Since Eric Rudolph pleaded guilty in April 2005 and was given two life sentences without parole, the serial bomber has issued his side of the story -- or parts of it, anyway -- to various correspondents, family members, media outlets and the public at large. Below are excerpts from Rudolph's writings on why he did what he did.
"Because I believe abortion is murder, I also believe that force is justified ... in an attempt to stop it. ...
"You so-called 'Pro-life,' 'good Christian people' who point your plastic fingers at me saying I am a 'murderer,' that 'two wrongs do not make a right,' that even though 'abortion is murder, those who would use force to stop the murder are morally the same,' I say to you that your lies are transparent. ...
Along with abortion, another assault upon the integrity of American society is the concerted effort to legitimize the practice of homosexuality. Homosexuality is an aberrant sexual behavior, and as such I have complete sympathy and understanding for those who are suffering from this condition. Practiced by consenting adults within the confines of their own private lives, homosexuality is not a threat to society. ... But when an attempt is made to drag this practice out of the closet and into the public square in an 'in your face' attempt to force society to accept and recognize this behavior as being just as legitimate and normal as the natural man/woman relationship, every effort should be made, including force if necessary, to halt this effort. ...
In the summer of 1996, the world converged upon Atlanta for the Olympic Games. Under the protection and auspices of the regime in Washington, millions of people came to celebrate the ideals of global socialism. ... [T]he purpose of the attack [at the Centennial Olympic Park] was to confound, anger and embarrass the Washington government in the eyes of the world for its abominable sanctioning of abortion on demand. ...
And now after the [plea] agreement has been signed the talking heads on the news opine that I am 'finished,' that I will 'languish broken and unloved in the bowels of some supermax,' but I say to you people that by the grace of God I am still here -- a little bloodied, but emphatically unbowed."
-- from Rudolph's 11-page statement issued April 13, 2005, the day he was sentenced
"The decision to act was the result of many years of my being confronted with the decline of Western Civilization and the realization that only radical action would slow or halt the decline."
-- from one of Rudolph's letters to Maryanne Vollers, responding to her question about what "transformed [his] belief into action"
"The problems threatening Western Civilization are too numerous to list here, but here are a few. Generally all that parades under the leftist banner is pathological, especially when it touches on domestic cultural social issues: The homosexual agenda, multiculturalism, diversity, the counter-culture, gun-control, Feminism, anti-Christianity, affirmative action and racial quotas, socialism, liberalism, Marxism, Pacifism, the destruction of the family, dissolution of the small family farm.
However, economically I share many things in common with the Left: Job protection, protectionism for industry, universal health care and college education, and most things that would fall under the populist banner."
-- from one of Rudolph's letters to Vollers, responding to her question about what factors (besides abortion) represent "the decline of Western civilization"
"Deadly force is sometimes justified to save life. That is what [the judge's] law books say. This is a riddle that even a fool can resolve. The only question is under what circumstances it is justified to take a life."
-- from Rudolph's 16-page satire of his prosecution, parts of which were published by the Colorado Springs Gazette Dec. 10, 2006