Dust jacket from the hardcover edition
|Author||Lou Michel and Dan Herbeck|
|Published||April 3, 2001, Harper|
American Terrorist: Timothy McVeigh & The Oklahoma City Bombing (2001) is a book by Buffalo, New York journalists Lou Michel and Dan Herbeck that chronicles the life of Timothy McVeigh from his childhood in Pendleton, New York, to his military experiences in the Persian Gulf War, to his preparations for and carrying out of the Oklahoma City bombing, to his trial and death row experience. One of the appendices lists all 168 people killed in the blast, along with brief biographical information. (There were plans to include a chapter about his execution in the softcover edition.) It is the only biography authorized by McVeigh himself, and was based on 75 hours of interviews that the authors had with McVeigh. McVeigh was said to be pleased overall with the book, but disappointed with the way he was portrayed and the explanation of his motive. Coauthor Michel said he viewed McVeigh as a "human being with a limited range of feelings in the areas of empathy and sympathy and with an oversized sense of rage and resentment."
According to Salon, McVeigh is portrayed in the book as an extremist:
He hates and fears the federal government, worships guns, fetishizes "liberty" (defined in almost purely negative terms, as freedom from external interference of any kind), embraces survivalism and sees himself as having acted in a proud American tradition of resistance to tyranny that goes back to the Founders. Throw in belief in the gold standard, certainty that a U.N.-run "New World Order" is poised to take over the world, racial resentment and an obsessive fixation on Ruby Ridge and Waco as proof that federal agents are jackbooted thugs waiting to make their final move, and the ... portrait is complete.— Gary Kamiya, Salon 
On April 19, 2010, a two-hour special, the "McVeigh Tapes", narrated by Rachel Maddow, was aired by MSNBC which was based on 45 hours of the interviews that Michel conducted with McVeigh while he was in prison. The program was criticized as providing a forum for McVeigh to air his viewpoints, and as blunting the effect of McVeigh's cold statements with flashy, computer generated images.
- Kamiya, Gary (April 7, 2001). "The patriot: He was prepared to shed blood to defend liberty. What separates American terrorist Timothy McVeigh from thousands of other gun-worshiping zealots?". Salon.com. Archived from the original on 25 April 2010. Retrieved April 21, 2010.
- Candiotti, Susan (April 5, 2001). "McVeigh 'pleased' yet 'disappointed' with book". CNN. Archived from the original on 23 April 2010. Retrieved April 21, 2010.
- Hinckley, David (April 19, 2010). "MSNBC's 'McVeigh Tapes' acts as Oklahoma City bombing killer Timothy McVeigh's megaphone". New York Daily News. Archived from the original on 22 April 2010. Retrieved April 21, 2010.
- Stanley, Alessandra (April 18, 2010). "'The McVeigh Tapes': A Terrorist, Plain-Spoken and Cold". New York Times. Archived from the original on 21 April 2010. Retrieved April 22, 2010.
- Resource materials for the writing of the book are housed at St. Bonaventure University
- "McVeigh author Dan Herbeck quizzed" (Transcript). Forum. BBC News. June 11, 2001. Retrieved April 22, 2010.
- Michel, Lou (April 20, 2010). "Review Lou Michel's chat about 'McVeigh Tapes'". Buffalo News. Archived from the original on April 23, 2010.
- "'The McVeigh Tapes: Confessions of an American Terrorist'" (VIDEO clips and Press release). MSNBC.com. April 15, 2010. Retrieved April 22, 2010.
- Hartung, Clint (December 19, 2004). "American Terrorist: Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City Bombing". Catholic New Times.
- Stuever, Hank (April 19, 2010). "Hank Stuever reviews MSNBC's 'McVeigh Tapes'". Washington Post.