Timothy McVeigh wanted to start a movement. After the Oklahoma City bombing, the Gulf War veteran expressed no regrets. Jeffrey Toobin details how McVeigh's principles and tactics have flourished in the decades since his death in 2001, reaching an apotheosis on January 6 when hundreds of rioters stormed the Capitol. Based on nearly a million previously unreleased tapes, photographs, and documents, including detailed communications between McVeigh and his lawyers, as well as interviews with such key figures as Bill Clinton, Toobin reveals how the story of Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City bombing is not only a powerful retelling of one of the great outrages of our time, but a warning for our future.
The entirety of Toobin’s book is given over to McVeigh and the ensuing trials ... The first half of the book recounts the events leading up to the bombing in Toobin’s unfussy prose ... Homegrown repeatedly draws a 'direct line' (as promised on the jacket copy) between the Oklahoma City bombing and the insurrection on Jan. 6; at multiple points Toobin interrupts his brisk narrative with some galumphing sentences reminding the reader of parallels that are glaringly obvious. The more intriguing parts of the book come from his descriptions of all the legal wrangling.
Authoritative and compelling ... Benefits from fresh interviews from figures such as former President Bill Clinton and Attorney General Merrick Garland, who oversaw the prosecution of McVeigh and Nichols ... His account of the bombing serves as a warning sign as much as it does a history of that legacy.
Toobin gathered insider facts from a trove of documents donated by the defense lawyers to weave together this hard-hitting narrative. Given the continued threats of violence and other actions against officials and democracy itself, Homegrown is a must read.