TEXT OF UNABOMB CASE LETTER RECEIVED BY N.Y. TIMES
Date: Fri, 28 Apr 95 22:43:33 PDT
From: Peter Langston <psl>
Subject: TEXT OF UNABOMB CASE LETTER RECEIVED BY N.Y. TIMES
[Here's a real buckle-buster... -psl]
Forwarded-by: bostic@CS.Berkeley.EDU (Keith Bostic)
Forwarded-by: firstname.lastname@example.org (Craig Good)
04/26:TEXT OF UNABOMB CASE LETTER RECEIVED BY N.Y. TIMES
c.1995 N.Y. Times News Service
Following is the text of the letter received by The New York Times on
Monday from the self-designated "terrorist group FC," claiming
responsibility for the serial bombings that the FBI attributes to a single
person or group in the case known as Unabom.
The document is presented verbatim, with original spelling, emphasis and
punctuation. Three passages have been deleted at the request of the FBI.
(Passage deleted at the request of the FBI)
This is a message from the terrorist group FC.
We blew up Thomas Mosser last December because he was a Burston-Marsteller
executive. Among other misdeeds, Burston-Marsteller helped Exxon clean up
its public image after the Exxon Valdez incident. But we attacked
Burston-Marsteller less for its specific misdeeds than on general
principles. Burston-Marsteller is about the biggest organization in the
public relations field. This means that its business is the development
of techniques for manipulating people's attitudes. It was for this more
than for its actions in specific cases that we sent a bomb to an executive
of this company.
Some news reports have made the misleading statement that we have been
attacking universities or scholars. We have nothing against universities
or scholars as such. All the university people whom we have attacked have
been specialists in technical fields. (We consider certain areas of
applied psychology, such as behavior modification, to be technical
fields.) We would not want anyone to think that we have any desire to hurt
professors who study archaeology, history, literature or harmless stuff
like that. The people we are out to get are the scientists and engineers,
especially in critical fields like computers and genetics. As for the bomb
planted in the Business School at the U. of Utah, that was a botched
operation. We won't say how or why it was botched because we don't want
to give the FBI any clues. No one was hurt by that bomb.
In our previous letter to you we called ourselves anarchists. Since
"anarchist" is a vague word that has been applied to a variety of
attitudes, further explanation is needed. We call ourselves anarchists
because we would like, ideally, to break down all society into very small,
completely autonomous units. Regrettably, we don't see any clear road to
this goal, so we leave it to the indefinite future. Our more immediate
goal, which we think may be attainable at some time during the next
several decades, is the destruction of the worldwide industrial system.
Through our bombings we hope to promote social instability in industrial
society, propagate anti-industrial ideas and give encouragement to those
who hate the industrial system.
The FBI has tried to portray these bombings as the work of an isolated
nut. We won't waste our time arguing about whether we are nuts, but we
certainly are not isolated. For security reasons we won't reveal the
number of members of our group, but anyone who will read the anarchist
and radical environmentalist journals will see that opposition to the
industrial-technological system is widespread and growing.
Why do we announce our goals only now, through we made our first bomb some
seventeen years ago? Our early bombs were too ineffectual to attract much
public attention or give encouragement to those who hate the system. We
found by experience that gunpowder bombs, if small enough to be carried
inconspicuously, were too feeble to do much damage, so we took a couple
of years off to do some experimenting. We learned how to make pipe bombs
that were powerful enough, and we used these in a couple of successful
bombings as well as in some unsuccessful ones.
(Passage deleted at the request of the FBI)
Since we no longer have to confine the explosive in a pipe, we are now
free of limitations on the size and shape of our bombs. We are pretty sure
we know how to increase the power of our explosives and reduce the number
of batteries needed to set them off. And, as we've just indicated, we
think we now have more effective fragmentation material. So we expect to
be able to pack deadly bombs into ever smaller, lighter and more harmless
looking packages. On the other hand, we believe we will be able to make
bombs much bigger than any we've made before. With a briefcase-full or a
suitcase-full of explosives we should be able to blow out the walls of
Clearly we are in a position to do a great deal of damage. And it doesn't
appear that the FBI is going to catch us any time soon. The FBI is a joke.
The people who are pushing all this growth and progress garbage deserve
to be severely punished. But our goal is less to punish them than to
propagate ideas. Anyhow we are getting tired of making bombs. It's no fun
having to spend all your evenings and weekends preparing dangerous
mixures, filing trigger mechanisms out of scraps of metal or searching
the sierras for a place isolated enough to test a bomb. So we offer a
We have a long article, between 29,000 and 37,000 words, that we want to
have published. If you can get it published according to our requirements
we will permanently desist from terrorist activities. It must be published
in the New York Times, Time or Newsweek, or in some other widely read,
nationally distributed periodical. Because of its length we suppose it
will have to be serialized. Alternatively, it can be published as a small
book, but the book must be well publicized and made available at a
moderate price in bookstores nationwide and in at least some places
abroad. Whoever agrees to publish the material will have exclusive rights
to reproduce it for a period of six months and will be welcome to any
profits they may make from it. After six months from the first appearance
of the article or book it must become public property, so that anyone can
reproduce or publish it. (If material is serialized, first instalment
becomes public property six months after appearance of first instalment,
second instalment, etc.) We must have the right to publish in the New York
Times, Time or Newsweek, each year for three years after the appearance
of our article or book, three thousand words expanding or clarifying our
material or rebutting criticisms of it.
The article will not explicitly advocate violence. There will be an
unavoidable implication that we favor violence to the extent that it may
be necessary, since we advocate eliminating industrial society and we
ourselves have been using violence to that end. But the article will not
advocate violence explicitly, nor will it propose the overthrow of the
United States Government, nor will it contain obscenity or anything else
that you would be likely to regard as unacceptable for publication.
How do you know that we will keep our promise to desist from terrorism if
our conditions are met? It will be to our advantage to keep our promise.
We want to win acceptance for certain ideas. If we break our promise
people will lose respect for us and so will be less likely to accept the
Our offer to desist from terrorism is subject to three qualifications.
First: Our promise to desist will not take effect until all parts of our
article or book have appeared in print. Second: If the authorities should
succeed in tracking us down and an attempt is made to arrest any of us,
or even to question us in connection with the bombings, we reserve the
right to use violence. Third: We distinguish between terrorism and
sabotage. By terrorism we mean actions motivated by a desire to influence
the development of a society and intended to cause injury or death to
human beings. By sabotage we mean similarly motivated actions intended to
destroy property without injuring human beings. The promise we offer is
to desist from terrorism. We reserve the right to engage in sabotage.
It may be just as well that failure of our early bombs discouraged us from
making any public statements at that time. We were very young then and
our thinking was crude. Over the years we have given as much attention to
the development of our ideas as to the development of bombs, and we now
have something serious to say. And we feel that just now the time is ripe
for the presentation of anti-industrial ideas.
Please see to it that the answer to our offer is well publicized in the
media so that we won't miss it. Be sure to tell us where and how our
material will be published and how long it will take to appear in print
once we have sent in the manuscript. If the answer is satisfactory, we
will finish typing the manuscript and send it to you. If the answer is
unsatisfactory, we will start building our next bomb.
We encourage you to print this letter.
(Passage deleted at the request of the FBI)
© 1995 Peter Langston