OT: Waco news-mild

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Here is the link: http://www.newsmax.com/showinsidecover.shtml?a=1999/9/10/214817

FBI Alerted Dallas Hospital Hours Before Waco Fire

Inside Cover has learned that Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas was warned, by federal agents on the scene in Waco, to prepare for trauma victims at least six hours before a fiery inferno consumed the Branch Davidian compound on April 19, 1993.

Contemporaneous reports reviewed by Inside Cover and interviews this week with hospital staff indicate that the FBI expected their assault on Mt. Carmel to result in heavy casualties among church members.

But despite the anticipated carnage the attack was executed as planned, raising serious questions about the motives behind the ill-fated decision to act.

A news report, broadcast on local Dallas television as the Mt. Carmel church fire raged out of control, revealed that Parkland Hospital staff had been called by the FBI just after 6:00 A.M. that day, more than six hours before fire erupted inside the compound.

The report featured a live interview with Parkland's then-Director of Emergency Services Jorie Kline by Channel 4's Cynthia Gau, a little more than an hour after the fire erupted. A tape recording of their exchange obtained by Inside Cover late on Friday shows that Parkland Memorial had been placed on full alert status:

UNIDENTIFIED ANCHOR: You bring up a good point here that 25 to 30 people may have survived. Let's go live now to Parkland Hospital, where Cynthia Gau is standing by with more on the medical aspect. Cynthia, what can you tell us in that respect?

GAU: We are in one of the largest and best burn centers in the state of Texas. And standing with me right now is Jorie Kline. And she is a nurse administrator here and she was put on alert; the whole hospital was put on alert, at 6:11 this morning. Now, what's going to be happening here?

KLINE: Well, everyone is on alert because of the potential situation in Waco and everybody's prepared to take care of any patients that are flown to us from the Waco area.

GAU: How many doctors will be available?

KLINE: Well, from the general surgery service we can pool our resources of approximately 50 surgeons. And then we also have our emergency medicine program as well as internal medicine in case there are any smoke inhalation victims.

GAU: When we spoke earlier you said that perhaps there might not be a possibility that all patients could be taken care of here. Is that true?

KLINE: Well, obviously we--our burn unit is almost at its capacity level. I understand that we can take four to five victims of this situation. And the burn physicians, Dr. Perdue and Dr. Hahn, who are recognized worldwide, as well as Cam Walker, the head nurse, are up there evaluating the patients and deciding how many patients we can take and how many we'll have to decide if they need to go to other facilites.

On Tuesday Parkland spokesperson April Foran told Inside Cover that its burn unit ultimately treated three Waco victims.

The 6:11 A.M. alert to Parkland staff came only minutes after the FBI began it's tank and tear gas assault on the Branch Davidian compound. Less than a year after the raid, Parkland's director of legal affairs, Tom Cox, told the Washington Times that there had been at least two early morning calls from the FBI to the hospital that day.

The same report noted that at 6:06 A.M. FBI microphones hidden inside the compound picked up comments the government said showed Davidians were preparing to torch the compound. Five minutes later, according to Director Kline, the FBI called Parkland.

On Friday, Parkland Communications Director Susan McBee could not determine the time of the second call reported by Mr. Cox before press time.

But McBee noted that the FBI had been in regular contact with Parkland Memorial throughout the more than seven-weeks Waco standoff,suggesting that the April 19 pre-fire tip-off was not particularly sinister by itself.

Still, the FBI's early morning alert to Parkland clearly indicated the government expected trouble that day. Yet after hearing what they say were church members preparing to burn Mt. Carmel down, the FBI spent the next six hours filling the compound with flammable CS gas.

Video, shot minutes after flames and smoke began to belch from the compound's windows, shows a U.S. military tank continuing to ram the wooden structure.

Parkland lawyer Cox told the Washington Times that the FBI's early morning heads-up warned that "there was a possibility of something occurring that day," but he added that agents had called "several previous times" during the 51-day siege.

"As soon as they (the FBI) took over, they made the decision they were going to bring everybody who needed to come to Parkland. Parkland was the closest Level One trauma facility to Waco," said Cox (Washington Times--Feb. 16, 1994).

On Tuesday, Harry Martin, editor of California's Napa Sentinel, told Inside Cover he was informed the day before the FBI's Waco assault that three area hospitals, including Parkland Memorial, had been warned to set aside beds for burn victims.

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******** Maybe not BIG news, but it makes me wonder; If they heard the Davidians were planning to start a fire, WHY continue to pump in a flammable gas??? Why continue to ram the building, opening up holes so that the wind can blow thru the building??

-- Brent James Bushardt (brentj@webt.com), September 16, 1999

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