Talk:Sterling Hall bombing

Add topic
Active discussions


I created this page to elaborate on the Sterling Hall bombing, which I felt we could go into more detail about if it were on it's own page. I did not want to detract from the UW-Madison history by discussing this even in too much detail.

I'm also interested in this article personally, not only because I took classes in this building, but now I actually work in the building next door (to which the physics department has moved). So please don't just speedy delete. There is a lot more to be said about this topic, I just didn't have time recently myself to do it. So is this a way of saying "hurry up!"? JabberWok 13:46, 5 October 2005 (UTC)

An article with original research meeting Wiki standards could be appropriate but not in the sense that the new article detracts the history of Sterling Hall from the History of the University which must remain on the main page. Also, the topic heading, Hall needs to be capitalized.


There is more content on the page today, however sketchy. It appears to be going beyond what is on the main page.

So far it is kinda anecdotal and non researched.

You might expand by looking into the Karlton brothers being hometown boys from the blue collar side of town, dad worked at Gisholt on East Washington where perhaps they got some of their orientation (as opposed to being West Siders). And David was sorta a New Yorker outatown guy. It was kinda pathetic when he was released on bail in his pink sweater to see him putting up "Free David" posters all over campus by himself to be viewed by a student community that did not even remember his name by that time. Of course, the locals did.

Leo was the one that looked the part of a radical, he was a terrifically friendly guy on the rowing team with long "radical hair" that made him standout as being close to whatever secret things were going on. You might describe his writing and editorials on the Cardinal and his role as Editorial Director.

An article would be greatly improved by profiling the bombers backgrounds and also the interplay of the campus administration totally failing the community by not recognizing the ticking time bomb on their hands (admin not faculty). There probably should be inclusion of Chancellor Young who was a very nice guy, but again, had his head in the sand.

Also, this article would require a comprehensive research of the damage that ocurred, its costs, bio on the fatality, info on the MATH research project and its denials. And inclusion of how the bombing completely shocked the campus, local and state community. And how the bombing changed the anti war movement on campus.

Kyle Andrew Brown 02:11, 6 October 2005 (UTC)

Much of the information I've placed on this page is derived from the two books I've placed in the "References" section. So I'm confused by your "anecdotal and non researched" statement. Tom Bates researched his book with many personal interviews - even interviews with Karl Armstrong, and David Fine themselves. I've also personally looked up and printed off full copies of stories that ran in the Madison papers after the bombing. But I'll try to add more references as soon as I can.
Also, it sounds like you seem know a lot about the bombing and the campus at the time. You could add some stuff too, no? JabberWok 03:01, 6 October 2005 (UTC)

is the quote significant?Edit

What is the significance of the the Howard Zinn quote? It's factually incorrect, and it doesn't add anything new or insightful. Either get rid of it, or add more to make a balance. There are lots of quotes in Bates' book, and plenty of others have publicly commented on it, including James Michener (sp), Paul Soglin, and John Wiley. Professor (retired) Frank Scarpace was interviewed about the incident in May, 2007, on Wisconsin Public Radio.—Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 21:59, June 6, 2007

In what way is it factually incorrect? Please list references. JabberWok 03:06, 8 June 2007 (UTC)
Maybe the anon means the last part where Zinn says: "But one man was working there, and he was killed." versus "injuring four men inside, and killing Robert Fassnacht, a post-graduate student and promising young physicist." [1] or maybe they mean "planted a bomb in a military research building" versus "parked a stolen Ford Econoline van next to Sterling Hall" [2] which was not a "military research building". Maybe the anon takes issue with the statement "remarkably nonviolent movement", even though this was the only car bombing that occurred, there were riots and major cases of civil disorder in other locations that forced national guard call-ups, and caused thousands of dollars in damages. One such incident was in Carbondale, IL at SIUC, "By the end of the May demonstrations, windows were broken out of 78 businesses causing more than $75,000 in damages. The University reported $25,525 in damages to the campus as a result of the demonstrations." [3] I'm sure there are other examples, perhaps they should clarify themselves. I also fail to understand why this article needs a quote section, especially one with just one quote. What other quotes would be added to it? --Dual Freq 04:31, 8 June 2007 (UTC)
Dual Freq raises some very interesting points about the Zinn quote, and I'd like to add one more. The bomb was not "timed" to go off; there was no timer switch. It was ignited by an ordinary fuse. The perpetrators made a warning call to the police at 3:38 AM; the bomb detonated 4 minutes later. The perpetrators saw lights on the building, and were aware that the building was in use 24/7, based on their prior surveillance (the perpetrators left behind notebooks detailing their plans). These facts are substantiated in Bates' and Morris' books. If Zinn has other quotes pertinent to the political implications of the bombing, those would be fine. But his quote in the article is a mischaracterization of the bombing altogether.
Dual Freq, thanks for finding the interesting quotes from Behr and Knowles.

" this day..."Edit

I have tagged this {{when}} not because I don't understand the expression, but because in this context it is meaningless.

Whenever it was added, it meant that he had not been captured as of whatever date the source was. Now it's some period of time later. Maybe the source is only a couple of days old, maybe it's five years old. Reading the article, we cannot tell if he had not been captured as of 15 January 2008 or 17 January 2003.

For clarity, this should say "and as of (date of source) was still at large."

Mdsummermsw (talk) 19:23, 17 January 2008 (UTC)

Nonsense. It means 'as of the day you are reading this, he is still at large', with the task of updating the article to add the additional information (i.e., date) of an eventual capture left for the future. I will do it if no-one else will. HenryLarsen (talk) 11:16, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Zinn quote issueEdit

I really don't understand why would someone put to question the relevance of a Zinn's quote about an historical bombing. It was pointed that the quote reveals some inacuracy since it does not clearly state the precise location of the bomb (some people may argue that you "bomb a building" or "plant a bomb in a building" even when you choose the ground zero point at the door) and the fact that besides the one person who was killed there could have been others. Personally, I think this is just cherry picking.

When he pointed out that the bomb only killed one man that was working there was in the context of describing how, in his view, the radicals sought to bomb the place when it was empty, in contrast with the government actions. The fact that he is not sensible to the reality of the bomb potentially killing a big group of people is just a POV that needs to be address somewhere else. The quote is a perspective of a respected author and I don't see how there is a clear mistake on how it is reported. Even the comment about this being a university and not a military research building, I think it is just cherry picking. If the university was being used in scientific investigation for the militaries, than someone might see it as a part of the military complex. Maybe this is just the usual rant from those "leftist nuts", but it is still just the perspective of an author and not the "wrong" account of someone who didn't get his facts straight. Maziotis (talk) 23:28, 29 October 2008 (UTC)

The quote seems more about his opinion on the war not the bombing itself. As mentioned above, his statement is factually incorrect in nearly every way relating to this article. Perhaps it would fit better in the Opposition to the Vietnam War article. His book was not specifically about this attack, he doesn't appear to be a witness and he doesn't appear to be closely associated with the event. I'm not sure why his opinion is required since thousands of historians have expressed their opinion on the subject as well. Should we list all of their quotes as well? --Dual Freq (talk) 00:56, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
About the quote being "factually incorrect", I have nothing else to add. I believe it is not, for the reasons I already mentioned.
I didn't add the quote and I never argued that it was essential or required. Personally, I don't care if the quote is there or not. That's why I didn't revert your edit. I do believe that the quote is relevant to this article and that it was wrong of you to remove it. The quote is clearly about the social and political implications of the bombing itself. I don't know where it could fit the Opposition to the Vietnam War. This is the historical context, which is essential to understand the meaning of the bombing. This is done by a notable author, so I don't see where is the problem.
I think you have a problem with Zinn's POV, but you shouldn't bring that here as an wikipedian. Maziotis (talk) 12:21, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
My POV about Zinn? I really don't know anything about Zinn, I do know that someone picked a quote from his book "Declarations of Independence" and put it in the article. Since its a book quotation, not something he was quoted as saying, my POV is why would he spend as much time as he did writing a book and then gloss over the details of the incident. He must have spent many hours writing it and researching it, yet he still messed up the minor details of the attack that could have easily been placed in that quote. The quote itself is about the anti-war movement, which he claims was non-violent and uses this attack as the example of its non-violence. It's one author's opinion on the movement, not the attack. His description of the attack is certainly lacking. That said, I don't particularly understand why his opinion on the anti-war movement belongs in an article about the attack. What makes his opinion worth mentioning in this article? Was he associated with the attack? Was he in Madison at the time? Did he write a book about it? Did he thoroughly research the attack and is considered a subject matter expert on it? --Dual Freq (talk) 02:42, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
As for social and political implications the quote mentions, which sentence in that quote says anything about its implications? "The movement against the Vietnam War reveals the double standard of government", I don't see anything there. "It was a remarkably nonviolent movement", no not there either. "There was one instance, so rare that it must be noted", nope not there either. One implication that is often mentioned is that the attack marked the climax of the violent protests, at least at UW. His quote provides no analysis of the implications, just his opinion on the movement in general, which is why I pointed to the article about the movement. --Dual Freq (talk) 02:42, 31 October 2008 (UTC)
You insist in saying that he failed to be true to the facts, but you have not yet respond to any of my initial comments. I still believe that you are wrong about that. You are wrong about the "bombing of the building"; you are wrong about the "military research building"; you are wrong about "one man being caught in the incident".
As for the social and political implications, I see it in all the excerpts you took from the quote. I don't know exactly what you are looking for, but any of those points put this attack in its historical context, and comments about various aspects of society in relation to the bombing. It is far from being a thorough analyzes; it's far from being any kind of analyzes, but this is only a one-sentence quote. I don't know what you expect. Since this is done by a notable author in the field, I don't see where is the problem. Maziotis (talk) 10:42, 31 October 2008 (UTC)

Merging subpages back into articleEdit

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a

Merge Proposal and / or Redirect. Please do not modify it.
The result of the request for the Proposed Merger of several articles into this talk page's article was:

Not Done—No Consensus to Merge.
— — — — —

Per WP:CRIME notability guidelines: Armstrong and Fine are only known in connection with the bombing. Since they are not renowned individually and this article already exists to cover the incident, any relevant information about them should be incorporated into this article, and their separate subpages should become redirects. I would put Burt and Fassnacht in the same category, but they are different cases since Burt was on the FBI's Top Ten Fugitive List (yet I don't think that warrants notability in itself) and Fassnacht (per his talk page circa 2006) may be known as one of the few notable deaths of the Vietnam War protest era. But back to WP:CRIME, the article is not long enough to warrant spin-outs, and the existing article could reasonably incorporate all of the notable aspects of the perps and victim. Thoughts? czar · · 18:04, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Personally, I would prefer to keep the articles separate. I think that this article would become cluttered if it contained the biographical information for all of the people mentioned. I also think that all four are notable under the WP:CRIME notability guidelines. All three of the perpetrators are notable under condition 2. The Sterling Hall bombing is notable for both its execution and the motivation behind the crime. Coverage of the incident continues till the present day and it and the perpetrators are mentioned in historical coverage of the Vietnam period. Crumley (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 21:45, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
If the articles were merged, I doubt the extra biological info would be necessary to include. Also if the four perps are notable under #2, what about the victim? czar · · 17:01, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
Yes, the biographical information on these 5 would not be as important in a combined article, but I think that Wikipedia as a whole would be losing out if that information is excised. They were the main parties in a seminal moment in the anti-Vietnam War protest movement. Their lives are worth understanding as background for the bombing itself. Plus, I do think that Fassnacht is notable as well. The bombing is an important historical event and many books published within the last 10 years mention him. Crumley (talk) 17:40, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
— — — — —
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a WP:PM.

Please do not modify it.
Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

GenQuest "Talk to Me" 01:02, 11 June 2013 (UTC)

A copy of this template can be found here.

Leo Burt looks far older than 21 in his photoEdit

21?? This guy's 30+ if he's a day:

We are to believe that is the photo of a 21 year old, and that Karl Armstrong (middle photo) is, here, a 22 year old:

These guys were supposed to be undergrads; they look like they're pushing 35-40. What's going on here? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:58, 8 January 2018 (UTC)

External links modifiedEdit

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified 3 external links on Sterling Hall bombing. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

This message was posted before February 2018. After February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{source check}} (last update: 18 January 2022).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 06:13, 9 January 2018 (UTC)