Admire them

During the stand-off at Mount Carmel I know ATF, FBI and local law-enforcement officers have been under attack for actions they or others have taken or may not have taken.

I want them to know that I’m glad they’re here, and I don’t feel things could have been handled much differently. They don’t deserve nine-tenths of the criticism that has been administered.

I, like many others, want them to know that we think they are doing things right. We’ve noticed, and we admire them for it.

Suzanne Hall



I have always been quick to criticize those who, in my opinion have not acted in the way that I think they should have, and slow to praise when that is warranted.

I am 70 years old, and have seen the federal government get continually more powerful. Much of this is spelled out in the book 1984. There are some who say that this book was merely a parody, and that the things therein did not come to pass.

But, had not the critics brought those predictions to light, would they not have materialized? We need the press.

Though I have rarely had praise for your writers lately, I feel that I must offer praise to Rowland Nethaway for some of his writings, and especially for his column of April 9, concerning the erosion of the protections of the Bill of Rights.

Those rights not specifically given to the federal branch by the Constitution are reserved to the states, and we definitely need more people with guts in the press and in the state Legislature willing to speak out against this continual encroachment of our rights by the federal government.

And that encroachment is the fundamental basis of the on-going complaints in the Mount Carmel fiasco, not against the individual officers.

Al Vavra


Read the Tribune-Herald's 7-part investigative series on the inner workings of the Branch Davidians. Hours after Part Two appeared in print, the ATF raided the group's compound.

Read the Tribune-Herald’s account of the ATF raid on the Branch Davidian compound on Feb. 28, 1993. Four ATF agents and six in the compound were killed in the gunfight.

Read the daily news accounts of the 51-day siege at the Branch Davidian compound near Elk, which began Feb. 28 and lasted until April.

Read the accounts of April 19 and beyond: FBI agents began inserting canisters of tear gas into the Branch Davidian compound in the early morning hours. By noon, it was on fire.