'Oklahoma City' Exposes the Unrelenting Threat of Homegrown Terrorism in America
The Oklahoma City bombing killed 168 people, injured 680 and left a local community devastated. Now the domestic terror attack is the subject of a new PBS documentary exploring the life and psyche of its perpetrator, Timothy McVeigh.
Prior to 9/11, the worst terrorist attack in American history took place April 19, 1995, when McVeigh set off a truck bomb leveling one third of a federal building. The anti-government militant was a former soldier, consumed by the paranoia of the radical right.
Oklahoma City argues that McVeigh was greatly influenced by the white supremacists he had met traveling the country for gun shows.
"The bombing in Oklahoma City was an attack on innocent children and defenseless citizens. It was an act of cowardice and it was evil. The United States will not tolerate it, and I will not allow the people of this country to be intimidated by evil cowards," President Bill Clinton announced the following day.
Timothy McVeigh was arrested for the attack less than 24 hours later and executed for his crimes in 2001. His co-conspirator, Terry Nichols, is serving a life sentence.
The documentary premiered at the Sundance Film Festival on January 24, where director Barak Goodman spoke about America's increasingly fractious political environment. “Where we come in as the media is with the ability to provide people with real facts, real reporting and old-fashioned journalism," Goodman said.
Oklahoma City airs Feb. 7, 9pm on PBS.
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