Just who was John Doe 2?
Posted: April 26, 2007
Pat Livingston, the proprietor of Pat's Pawn & Gun Shop in Ogden, Kansas, tells a credible story. It not only has internal consistency, but it also corresponds with the facts and logic of the Oklahoma City bombing as they are known.
A former military policeman, Livingston shatters the stereotype of the anti-government, gun-peddling, conspiracy theorist that haunts the liberal imagination.
Livingston cooperated fully with the authorities for months on the Oklahoma City bombing and considers the leg work of the FBI and ATF “outstanding.” He tells me, “They kicked every bush here and turned over every stone.”
They did not, however, find John Doe #2. Livingston thinks he knows why.
On the morning of April 19, 1995, shortly after the destruction of the Murrah Building, an Oklahoma state trooper pulled over an old yellow Mercury Marquis that lacked a rear license plate. The driver was Timothy McVeigh.
More troubling than the absence of the tag was the Glock 45 that McVeigh was carrying concealed in a shoulder holster. This earned him a trip to the pokey in Perry, Oklahoma.
Just before releasing McVeigh two days later, the troopers ran a gun check on the Glock. The check led to Pat's Pawn & Gun Shop. The day before, Livingston had been shown a composite of John Does #1 and #2, the result of an identification at Elliott’s Body Shop in nearby Junction City, where McVeigh had rented the Ryder truck.
Livingston told the authorities he had seen both John Does and thought he had sold guns to #1. When he saw on TV that these composites were related to the Oklahoma City bombing, he dug through his records, identified McVeigh by name, and informed the authorities of the same.
When the call came in from the ATF on the Glock, Livingston understood exactly what he had on his hands. Said he to the startled ATF agent in something of an understatement, “This is the most important gun trace of your life.”
In the days that followed, Livingston found gun records for Terry Nichols. Nichols had bought a Glock from him in January 1995 and another in February 1995. Since McVeigh already had his, Livingston wonders for whom that second Glock was bought.
According to the recent Rohrbacher report, Nichols had just returned from the Philippines. He had left on this final trip in November 1994 and brought with him a book entitled The Chemistry of Powder and Explosives.
On January 6, 1995, a fire broke out in the Manila apartment where master bomber Ramzi Yousef was mixing chemicals for his planned assault on American airliners called the Bojinka plot. Yousef fled, but his co-conspirator, Abdul Hakim Murad, was arrested, and the Bojinka plans were seized.
On that same January day, Nichols “inexplicably” changed the travel plans he had recently made and “hastily departed” the Philippines. “All this,” notes the Rohrbacher report, “justifiably leads to speculation that the Bojinka plot may have been tied to a more grandiose scheme”—one that included a coordinated attack on the American homeland.
“I think that Terry Nichols was the mastermind behind the OKC Bombing without any doubt whatsoever,” says Livingston. McVeigh, as he sees it, “was just the delivery boy.”
That much said, McVeigh had the wherewithal to carry out the plan. Nichols did not. “He wasn't the kind of guy that would go through with this attack,” says Livingston, who describes Nichols as a “wormy, cowardly, sneaky type that wouldn't look you in the eye.”
As Livingston tells it, in early 1995 Nichols started spending thousands of dollars on surplus equipment at the Fort Riley surplus sales that he also attended. Another surplus dealer told Livingston that Nichols was shipping the material to the Philippines.
During those early months of 1995, according to Livingston, Nichols was the one “running around here” renting storage spaces, looking for racing fuel, blasting caps, det cord, fertilizer, and other necessary materials.
The problem, however, was that Nichols “was a basic infantryman with no bomb making skills of any kind.” To compensate, Livingston believes that Nichols’ contacts in the Philippines “sent John Doe 2 up here to mix the bomb and make sure that it got delivered.”
Livingston had seen the John Doe #2 first identified at Elliott’s Body Shop with McVeigh but did not know his name, had not talked to him and had never sold him any weapons. Livingston describes him as short, Hispanic-looking, thick-necked and husky.
“He wore a hat with a z pattern with bright colors on it like maybe a foreign soccer team,” says Livingston. Scores of people in the Fort Riley area had seen this character at gun shows and surplus sales with Nichols or McVeigh.
Livingston is not looking for an easy way to tie up loose ends. He is sure that Hussain Al-Hussaini, the Iraqi national in Oklahoma City suspected of being complicit, was not the John Doe #2 he or anyone else had seen in the Fort Riley area.
“If he had any sense,” says Livingston of John Doe #2, “after the bombing he was on the next flight back to where he came from.” And Janet Reno, “the most corrupt attorney general in this nation’s history,” was not about to go looking.
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