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(Editor's note: On May 11 the planet Mars turned retrograde and the government announced a 30-day delay of the execution due to the discovery of FBI documents that were not shared with McVeigh's defense team. The opposition from Uranus to McVeigh's birth Jupiter on May 16, the original execution date, will remain in effect until late July.)

Timothy McVeigh killed 168 innocent people—men, women and children—in the worst terrorist act in U.S. history. He has no remorse, referring to the dead children as "collateral damage," and said in a biography written by two reporters, he wished he could have leveled the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.

On May 16, Timothy McVeigh will be executed by lethal injection at the federal prison in Terra Haute, Indiana. The execution will be broadcast over closed circuit television for viewing by 250 relatives of the victims. About 1,300 reporters are expected to converge on the prison to cover the execution, and 400 law enforcement officers are scheduled to be on duty around the prison grounds.

Despite the monstrous indifference McVeigh shows toward the victims of his own acts, he claims that what motivated him was sympathy for the victims of the U.S. government—those killed by government agents at Ruby Ridge and the Branch Davidian Compound in Waco, Texas. Can such twisted reasoning be explained astrologically? Is there a star pattern in his horoscope that can provide some explanation?

Sun and Mercury in Taurus

Astrology Horoscope: Timothy McVeighMcVeigh was born on April 23, 1968, in Lockport, New York at 8:30 am. Both the Sun and Mercury are in tight conjunction in the fixed earth sign of Taurus. When Mercury, the planet of thinking and communicating, is that close to the Sun, it is said to be "combust," indicating that the individual's reasoning processes may be blinded to objective reality by the ego needs of the Sun. Placed in the fixed sign of Taurus, the Sun and Mercury also form fixed ideas that once formulated can be clung to stubbornly, to the point of obsession in some cases.

McVeigh's Moon is located in Pisces in the Tenth House. Pisces is the sign of compassion and meditation on the plus side, and delusion and confusion on the negative side. In itself, McVeigh's Pisces Moon indicates a highly impressionable personality. The Moon receives an opposition from Pluto and Uranus which are conjunct in Virgo in the Fourth House—the sector of the chart related to the psychological impact of childhood and the past. This indicates a turbulent home life during childhood that probably had a traumatic effect on his emotions.

So far we have a picture of an individual with an impaired emotional life, who, with Mercury and Sun in Taurus may have a tendency to hold obsessive ideas. While Mercury is in charge of thinking and communicating, ideas and ideology are the province of Jupiter. Let's take a look at McVeigh's Jupiter to see if we can learn what his beliefs were.

Of Heroes and Kings

Jupiter, the planet that helps us form our beliefs, is in Leo, the sign of heroes and kings, possibly pointing to a need to believe in the self as someone heroic, echoing Mercury's tight conjunction with the Sun. Jupiter is under considerable stress caused by square aspects from Neptune in Scorpio and Mars in Taurus. Jupiter is actually the apex planet in what is known as a t-square formation.

A t-square creates a dynamic structure within the personality that can become the dominant overriding force that drives the individual. The apex planet is the outlet for the formation, and can be the most important planet in the horoscope.

In this case, Jupiter is influenced by Neptune in eye-for-an-eye Scorpio. McVeigh's belief system was tinged with Neptunian fantasies of revenge for perceived wrongs whether real or imagined. Neptune and Jupiter together prompted Mars in Taurus to take action based on potentially delusional misperceptions.

McVeigh's Mars also receives favorable 120 degree trine aspects from Pluto and Uranus in Virgo. Remember Uranus and Pluto oppose his Moon, creating extreme emotional stress. Uranus is revolutionary and rebellious while Pluto, ruler of Scorpio, wants vengeance, reform and change. The Pluto-Uranus combination can be a highly volatile combination, and would only encourage Mars to take whatever action is deemed necessary in order to relieve the emotional stress of the Moon.

A Twisted Idealogue

Whatever name comes to mind when you think of McVeigh—monster, mass murderer, psychopath—if you really stop to think about it, perhaps "twisted ideologue" is more accurate, since his actions were based on the belief that the U.S. government had become oppressive. In an interview on 60 Minutes last year, McVeigh said he became disillusioned with the U.S. government while he was serving in the Gulf War, asking himself whether he was doing the right thing "to come over to this persons' country and kill him? How did he ever transgress against me?"

Disillusion often comes with transits of Saturn, the planet of reality. In 1991, as Saturn in Aquarius squared his Taurus Sun and Mercury, McVeigh was discharged from the Army early. He had tried and failed to qualify for the Special Forces, clearly a blow to his heroic self concept. Disillusionment with the government grew with the deaths at Ruby Ridge and Waco. In March 1993, while transiting Saturn still in Aquarius opposed his natal Jupiter and squared natal Neptune, McVeigh actually went to Waco and stood outside the police cordon around the Branch Davidian Compound. After the siege in which 70 people were killed McVeigh said he was "shaken, angered that that could happen in this country, where our core beliefs are freedom and liberty."

Two years later, on April 19, 1995, when transiting Saturn, now in Pisces, opposed his natal Pluto in Virgo and sextiled his angry Mars, McVeigh, with the help of his friend Terry Nichols built a truck bomb that McVeigh now admits he drove to the Murrah Building. By now McVeigh had become a hero in his own mind, striking back on behalf of helpless victims of an "oppressive" government, and as a result 168 innocent Oklahomans lost their lives.

Execution Day

When the state of Indiana delivers the lethal injection into McVeigh's body on May 16, transiting Uranus will oppose McVeigh's misguided Jupiter. Jupiter is often activated at the time of death, indicating a sudden final release from the Earth plane. This transit gives weight to those who say McVeigh's wish to be executed rather than spend life in prison should not be granted because it will release him from further punishment.

Finally, as the media circus surrounding the event unfolds that day, the transiting Sun will be in opposition to McVeigh's natal Neptune in Scorpio and his misconstrued existence (Sun) will come to an earthly end by means of intravenously delivered drugs (Neptune).

Society will have exacted a punishment to fit the crime, but with a televised execution, and some even attempting to have coverage of the execution disseminated over the Internet, or on national television, it will be a day calling not for blood and exploitation, but for reason and introspection.



John M. Whalen is freelance writer, astrologer, and editor of a business publication based in Washington, D.C. He writes about film, TV, music and travel for various magazines and newspapers. He contributed a chapter on the life and films of director Sam Peckinpah to the new book, The Astrology of Film: The Interface of Movies, Myth, and Archetype.

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For more information about John Whalen, click here.

Other StarIQ articles by John Whalen:

  • Astro-Zen   3/10/2012
  • Astro-Zen   9/10/2004
  • Polarized Politics   8/20/2004
  • Saturn and the Vanquishing of Illusion   11/3/2003
  • The Grand Illusion   1/9/2003
  • Two Degrees of Scorpio   10/10/2002
  • Venus Elements   2/14/2002
  • Kevin Spacey: A Mystery Wrapped in an Enigma   4/9/2001
  • Keanu Reeves' Excellent Adventure   3/8/2001
  • Steven Soderbergh: Putting the Cuffs on Oscar   3/5/2001
  • The Christmas Eclipse: Bringing Your Heart's Desire   12/25/2000
  • Robert DeNiro: Master of Form and Essence   11/18/2000
  • Sylvester Stallone: A Fallen Star, Rising Again?   10/28/2000
  • Yasser, Ehud, Can We Talk?   8/31/2000
  • Alec Guinness: Reluctant Jedi   8/19/2000
  • Human Genetics: O Brave New World!   8/16/2000
  • Survivor: Candid Camera Runs Amok   7/8/2000
  • Samuel L. Jackson: Shaft for the New Millennium   7/1/2000
  • Jackie Chan: Fearless Aries with the Comic Touch   6/23/2000

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