Domestic Terrorism – The Oklahoma City Bombing

Essay by sjustis2College, UndergraduateB+, March 2009

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Criminal Investigation CJ210-12

Final Project

Domestic Terrorism

By Shelly Justis

Professor James Schlicher, MS

September 1, 2008

Domestic Terrorism - The Oklahoma City Bombing

The first think people may think of when they think terrorism is the "9-11" attacks. But they fail to think of the attacks that can take place or have taken place here on our soil by our own people. Until the Oklahoma City bombing, Americans generally though of terrorism as a foreign problem that could not invade the walls of our nation. Militia and patriot groups were thought to be relatively harmless groups who enjoyed rousing people's emotions. The majority of Americans did not realize how serious or dangerous these groups were. Very few people understood why a fellow countryman would wreak such havoc on them. When it was realized that the accused suspects in the Oklahoma City bombing evidently had ties to a political extremist group, citizens started to look at these groups closer.

Over several decades, these extremists and political patriots have evolved into the most dangerous enemy this country has ever faced. Transnational terrorism, which is almost always connected to political terrorism, has gone through a slow evolution since the 1930s. For example, according to Philip Jenkins, the forefather to today's extremists was an organization called the Christian Front, which prospered in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Jenkins states that the Christian Front was founded by Father Charles E. Coughlin, host of a weekly radio show. He contends they were anti-Semitic, anti-communist, and anti-government. Jenkins suggests the Christian Front recruited easily from citizens who had been brutalized by the depression. He also believes that the Christian Front was able to convince many people that the government had caused the depression. During the 60s and 70s, extremist groups fed on the Vietnam...