Six service members who committed heinous terrorist acts

Terrorism takes many forms- from foreign agents to disgruntled “lone wolf” attacks from within our own communities, just about anyone could be driven to commit an act of terrorism if the circumstances, motivation and provocation all max out at just the right time.

The United States Military has had it’s share of homegrown terrorists borne from its ranks. Be it ideological disagreement, changing times, growing government or a brain tumor, these six veterans all crossed the line and left an indelible black smear on their respective pages of history.

1: Timothy McVeigh

Timothy Mcveigh

A former member of the Army’s 1st Infantry Division, McVeigh was awarded a Combat Infantry Badge and Bronze Star during Operation Desert Storm. Working with M2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles, McVeigh was actually considered a stellar soldier- though he was counseled once for buying a racially-charged tshirt. He tried out for Special Forces but was not able to pass the PT requirements.

After the military, McVeigh had a lot of issues re-adapting to civilian life. Rarely seen without at least one piece of his old uniform on, McVeigh drifted around, getting involved with some extremist right-wing groups and his equally disgruntled Army buddy, Terry Nichols.

Angered by the way the FBI and ATF handled incidents like the Waco and Ruby Ridge sieges, McVeigh and Nichols decided they wanted to blow up a federal building in retaliation. Renting a storage unit, the pair compiled enough homemade explosive material until they deemed it suitable enough to load into a rental truck that they picked up outside of Fort Riley, Kansas.

In 1995, Armed with a giant VBIED, McVeigh drove into the parking garage of the A.P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City. Arming a timed fuse, he drove away in a getaway truck left by Nichols.

Roughly 168 people were killed in the bombing, including children that were in a daycare center. Nichols and McVeigh were detained quickly and following their trials, Nichols received life without parole while Mcveigh was sentenced to death.

On the day of his execution, he handed a copy of William Ernest Henley’s poem “Invictus” to the prison warden.


  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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