Re: Waco: Sniper's Nest Revealed

From: Michael M. Butler (
Date: Mon Feb 07 2000 - 22:34:27 MST

So substitute the word "operator" pr "shooter" for the word "sniper" or
"sharpshooter" and the discussion can continue.

One with better 3D models than I might be able to deduce if the "hide"
or "blind" was improvised by operators out of fallen housing materials,
and if its placement was consistent with establishing a field of fire
sufficient to control the (expected?) exits in that area, possibly
including parts of the building opened up by the fallen materials.

I don't know if there were any windows, etc. facing that putative
"courtyard", nor do I know anything about the intelligence available to
the operators. It's possible they knew where every threat was, all the
time. They surely weren't short on surveillance gear. So, though high
risk, perhaps it didn't need to be highly defensible. Or maybe there
were Spectra-laid trauma plates just behind the wood. I don't know if
the Davidians were in any shape to make excursions enough to account for
the appearance of this whatever-it-is.

MMB, still ignorant

Ian Goddard wrote:
> At 12:57 PM 02/07/2000 -0800, Hal wrote:
> >I spent several hours studying the earlier Waco video a few months ago.
> >I agree that, based on these photographs, a structure of some sort is
> >present in the courtyard on the day of the fire, which was not there a
> >few days ago.
> >
> >However I question whether this would be a "sniper's nest" for a couple of
> >reasons. The main one is that this does not seem to be a very reasonable
> >position for a sniper to hide. It is in the courtyard, surrounded on
> >three sides by buildings occupied by the people he would be sniping at.
> >
> >It does not appear to be a very defensible position, as he could have
> >bullets coming at him from three directions. Further, he would himself
> >be firing at virtually point-blank range.
> >
> >"Sniping" usually connotes a somewhat long-distance firing activity.
> >Placing your "nest" in the middle of the enemy's courtyard, mere yards
> >from the walls, just seems utterly absurd.
> IAN: Your analysis seems reasonable on its face.
> We should note that the tank's penetration around
> the rear of the gym, with supplemental machinegun
> fire, was obviously providing cover for the close-in
> sniper(s). The thermal flashes in the courtyard are
> very pronounced, and can be broken down into rapid
> fire of machine guns. The vast majority of expert
> analysis says they are gun shots, and the initial
> counter explanation of sunlight reflections has
> been invalidated and abandoned by the FBI. Now
> the FBI says (1) that FLIR can't pick up gun
> shots and (2) the flashes are glitches on the
> tape. (1) is false, "Waco: A New Revelation" shows
> FLIR tape of a gun fight where gun shots are visible
> in the exact same way seen at Waco. (2) is improbable,
> since the locations of flashes over time remain fixed
> with respect to the ground, even as the camera changes
> it's location. In short, flash locations are not random.
> Why shots would be fired so close is odd, but I believe
> the evidence indicates that they were. There must be a
> reason why they needed to get so close, maybe we'll
> figure it out. As for the snipers nest. I got word
> from one of the lawyers that the tank punched the wall
> out at that point (not visible on the FLIR) and a sniper
> or snipers used the punched-out-wall as a makeshift hide.
> ========================================================
> ========================================================
> "There are times when you cannot keep your job and
> put alternative explanations for data on the table."
> Former FBI Special Agent Dr. Frederic Whitehurst

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