FBI Torches Elian, Family
Published April 25, 2000 in Whoa!

MIAMI -- Attorney General Janet Reno ended her tenure much as it began today, ordering the FBI to attack the Miami home of Elian Gonzalez' relatives, which subsequently burned to the ground, killing all inside.

As an amplified voice deadpanned, "This is not an assault," armored vehicles crushed the north facade of the Little Havana home of Lazaro Gonzalez and pumped enough toxic gas inside to kill a herd of wild IMF protesters. At around noon a fire erupted that quickly consumed the Cuban compound.

After delaying firefighters for about 17 hours, FBI officials allowed fire trucks near the property shortly before sundown. Unfortunately, by then everything within its wrought-iron gates had decayed into a fine, volcanic dust.

"We at the bureau are devastated by this tragic turn of events," Reno said in a sit-down interview with a tearful Diane Sawyer. "We really thought it would work this time. Maybe the third time's the charm, as they say. The most agonizing part is that all physical evidence has been melted into the earth."

The gender-funny top cop said she was unaware that it was the seventh anniversary of the assault on Mount Carmel, near Waco. "I thought it was just Hitler's Birthday Eve," she admitted sheepishly.

Echoes of the ill-fated attack on wild-eyed, maniacal, child-molesting, spittle-erupting cult leader David Koresh and his disciples abounded. Assistant Director Louis Freeh attempted to downplay the similarities at another sit-down interview, this one conducted by ABC's Head Dunce Cokie Roberts.

"Sure, it happened on the same day," Freeh maintained. "Sure, it involved tanks, tear gas and a mysterious fire - but other than that, I don't see the similarity. I mean, these were cigar-chompin' spics! They probably can't even VOTE for chrissake!"

Freeh said authorities were looking into the possibility that the Gonzalez' burned themselves with Cuban cigars and cheap rum.

Meanwhile, Reno said little Elian's tragedy-prone father will be properly compensated for his loss.

"Regis Philbin has already promised him a slot on 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire,'" she said. She stated she didn't know if Philbin would allow for international "lifeline" calls.

"We'll also give him one of our cool jackets that says 'FBI' in yellow letters on the back to take home to his native Cuba," she added. "We hope these token gestures will help ease the pain of his loss."

See also...
... in the Whoa! section
... from April 25, 2000