exclusive clip

Timothy McVeigh Recounts His Plan for the OKC Bombing in a Clip From PBS Documentary Oklahoma City

To this day, the 1995 bombing of Oklahoma City’s Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building remains the deadliest instance of domestic terrorism in United States history. Spurred to action by a standoff between the FBI and a cult in Waco, Texas, and inspired by white nationalist literature, ex-soldier Timothy McVeigh chose to target the Murrah building because it could provide a high body count: The concrete building held a day-care center and offices of several government agencies, including the Social Security Administration, Housing and Urban Development, and the ATF. Oklahoma City, a new documentary from PBS, explores both the attack, which killed 168 people, and the ideology of white nationalism that enabled McVeigh’s terrorism. “From a military perspective, to get a message across you need to hurt them where they hurt the most,” McVeigh recounts in a jailhouse interview excerpted in this clip. “The only way they’re going to feel something and the only way they’re going to get the message is with a body count.” Oklahoma City opens in limited release on February 3 and airs February 7 on American Experience/PBS.

Hear Timothy McVeigh Recount His Plan for the OKC Bombing