periodically holding silly and selfcontradictoryrnpress conferences. Thernonly fun part of the show was the spokesman’srnembarrassing theological blatherings,rnwhich were as ignorant, confused,rnobsessive, and boring as he said Koresh’srnwere, though the spokesman offeredrnthem only in the hope of divertingrnAmericans from the real issues.rnAccording to all accounts, commonlyrnreported in newspapers and never contradicted,rnthe FBI was not called in byrnthe local authorities, from whom theyrnnever asked permission. They threatenedrnto arrest the local sheriff for interference.rnThey arrested persons for “defamingrnthe ATF”; Sheriff Lynch setrnthem free. The FBI never even asked forrna declaration of martial law, which mightrnhave given them some sort of legal authority.rnThen, after weeks of psychologicalrnwarfare by glaring lights and deafeningrnsound, the FBI attacked andrnsmashed into a complex lit by kerosenernlamps and candles, with tanks equippedrnwith long-necked cranes and tear gas.rnDuring a windstorm. Surprise—fire engulfedrnthe complex, killing almost everyonernin it. Was it mass suicide? Was itrnkillings by Davidian leaders? (Both ofrnthese possible endings were glorified inrnthe TV mini-series Masada, about thernJews besieged by the Roman Army. Andrnthe Jews didn’t have to listen to the amplifiedrnscreeching of Buddhist chants 24rnhours a day.) Or was it the kerosenernlamps and candles that set off the fire?rnJlpr Immediikte Servicern.-;-S •rnA-‘i-WW SUig^C^lBERSrnFRSENiOMBERrn•;. i rn1-800-877-5459rnr r m n ^itliE. iSffiS^^rnWhat difference does it make?rnThe entire federal operation, from beginningrnto end, was illegal, and horriblyrnimmoral. It slaughtered almost a hundredrnpeople. Not to mention violatingrnnine of the ten amendments in our Billrnof Rights. (That must be a record.) Allrnwe have by way of explanation is the alreadyrndiscredited FBI spokesman’s wordrnthat Koresh “talked as though he wantedrnArmageddon to begin.” If that wererntrue, the ATF and FBI were apparentlyrnhappy to oblige.rnThe final, and lamest, excuse by thernFBI spokesman was that “the Davidiansrncould have surrendered to us anytimernthey wanted.” This reminds me of arnrapist-killer 1 was once appointed as arnlaw}’er to represent, whose defense wasrnthat “the slut could have given in to mcrnanytime she wanted.” I convinced himrnto plead guilty.rnIncidentally, in a city like Waco, whichrnis almost totally Southern Baptist, whatrnis a “cult”? Jehovah’s Witnesses?rnMethodists? Roman Catholics (led by arnPope with more spiritual power than Koreshrnever aspired to)? My family is AnglicanrnCatholic, a tiny denomination givenrnto Elizabethan English, male priests,rnand hats on ladies in church. We requirernthe ritualistic consumption of anrnaddictive drug (communion sherrv). Werneven engage in “cannibalism” (the Bodyrnand Blood of Christ). Are we a cult?rnKoresh, in his public statements beforernbeing censored and reinterpreted b thernFBI, clearlv stated that he was “thernChrist, just as every one of us is thernChrist, anointed by the Father.” Doesrnthis mean that liberal churchmen likernEpiscopal Bishop Spong of New Jersey,rnwho periodically echo this kind of meaninglessrnbilge, all have Messiah complexes?rnPerhaps a “cult” is just any religiousrngroup that one disapproves of.rnAlso, did all of this begin becausernthe ATF barelv survived abolition underrnReagan? Its appropriations, after all,rnwere currently under review, and itrnhadn’t had a good shootout since AlrnCapone. When James Higgins, thernhead of the ATF, appeared and testifiedrnbefore a congressional committee a fewdaysrnafter the raid, it was not, as mostrnpeople assumed, to answer for Waco.rnThe hearing had long been scheduled torninvestigate the usefulness of and appropriationsrnfor his Special Operationsrnbranch. Were the timing of the raid andrnunnecessary violence (and advance noticernto the media) just political ploysrnstaged to preserve Higgins’ power andrnfunding? Did almost a hundred Americansrndie for this? The Houston Chroniclernrecentlv obtained a tape of a conversationrnbetween Koresh and ATF negotiatorrnJim Cavanaugh a few hours after the initialrnraid, indicating again that Koreshrnwouldn’t have resisted had the ATFrnagents given him a chance. “It wouldrnhave been better if you just called me uprnor talked to me,” Koresh said. “Thenrnyou all could have come in and donernyour work.” Instead there is a bloodvrngunfight. Perhaps a tame service of warrantrnand quiet investigation by one orrntwo agents wouldn’t have served Higgins’rnpurpose, especiallv if no illegalrnweapons were found.rnAs to who should investigate thernWaco Massacre, I nominate the InternationalrnRed Cross. They proved, in thernmidst of World War II, that our Sovietrnallies, and not the Germans, were responsiblernfor the Katyn Forest Massacrernof 10,000 Polish officers. The TreasuryrnDepartment, Justice Department, andrnCongress will be as useless investigatingrnWaco as the Soviet Secret Police were tornthe Katyn investigation.rnThe Treasury Department has alreadyrnannounced that its “fair and impartial”rninvestigation of Waco is nearly completedrnand that it was undertaken with nornpreconceived notions, bias, or prejudices.rnThen way down in the last paragraph ofrnthe newspaper accounts of the announcementrnis a postscript by the Treasuryrnspokesman: the investigation wasrnconducted as a memorial to the four innocent,rnmurdered ATF agents, who werernonly trving to serve a warrant. So muchrnfor impartiality.rnAt the very time of the Waco Massacre,rnseveral Los Angeles police officersrnwere undergoing their (double jeopard))rntrial for merely roughing up (not killing)rnRodney King, a man seen committing arnmisdemeanor, caught in “hot pursuit,”rnand possessing a long criminal record.rnSurely trials of the ATF and FBI leaders,rnincluding at least Higgins and JanetrnReno, that resulted in swift justice andrnstiff Nuremberg-like sentences couldrnhelp return us to constitutional government.rnPerhaps this is the only way forrnthe public to understand that the federalrngovernment is dangerously out of controlrnand that the Constitution of thernUnited States is now a dead letter.rnEgon Richard Tausch practices constitutionalrnlaw m San Antonio, Texas.rn46/CHRONICLESrnrnrn