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Terrorism – Domestically Speaking

With all of the attention being paid to al Qaeda inspired terrorism, most people lose sight of the fact that we have had domestic, non-Islamic terrorists for a number of decades. What makes Americans turn against other Americans is beyond my understanding. Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nicols in Oklahoma City, Eric Rudolph who bombed women’s health care clinics and was responsible for the bombing at the Centennial Olympic Park in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, the madman acts of Theodore Kaczynski and even the Rajneeshis in Oregon are previous examples of domestic terrorism.

This past week brings another incident of an attempted act of domestic terrorism with the arrest of Jeffrey Don Detrixhe, a Texas man, in Oklahoma by the F.B.I. Jeffrey Don Detrixhe, 38, of Higgins, Texas, was arrested Monday in southeastern Oklahoma on a complaint of possession or transfer of a chemical weapon. The F.B.I. used an informant and covert recordings to implicate Detrixhe in the plot to supply cyanide to the Aryan Brotherhood.

Between March and April, the informant and Detrixhe allegedly held several discussions that were covertly recorded by the FBI. In many of the conversations, Detrixhe commented about mixing the cyanide with acid to release poisonous gas. According to the court papers, during a March 27, 2008, meeting, Detrixhe claimed, "I could kill a city with that son-of-a-bitch. Euthanize a whole village."

Courts records apparently indicate that Detrixhe had previous legal issues and drug use. Further, there are some reports that despite telling the informant that he had a 25 gallon drum of cyanide pellets, that he didn’t have any real intention to carry out an attack.

James O. Ellis III of the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism says the arrest was for trafficking, but had someone tried to "weaponize" the cyanide it would've been a far more serious situation.

Detrixhe waived his initial court appearance Wednesday (May 15th) in US District Court, and a judge ordered US Marshals to extradite him to Texas. Somehow, I don’t see how this incident can be minimized ("I could kill a city with that son-of-a-bitch. Euthanize a whole village."). The fact that the situation was interrupted, or that some people claim that Detrixhe was “merely trafficking” the cyanide or that the chemical hadn’t been weaponized in my opinion is immaterial. A conviction for intent to sell a chemical weapon is punishable by up to life in prison.