Examined from both sides - the Bureau of Alcohol and Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) and the FBI on one hand, and David Koresh and his followers on the other - this text focuses on the events at Mt. Carmel, near Waco Texas. Dick J. Reavis contends that the government had little reason to investigate Koresh, and even less to raid the compound at Mt. Carmel. The government lied to the public about most of what happened - about who fired the first shots, about drugs allegations, and about the child abuse. The FBI was duplicitous and negligent in gassing Mt. Carmel - and that alone could have started the fire that killed 76 people. Drawing on interviews with survivors of Koresh's movement (which dates back to 1935), as well as from esoteric religious tracts and audiotapes, and previously undisclosed government documents, Reavis uncovers the story of the burning at Waco, including the trial that followed. The author quotes from Koresh himself to create a portrait of a movement, an assault and an avoidable tragedy.