Encyclopedia of Modern Worldwide Extremists and Extremist Groups

By Stephen E. Atkins | Go to book overview

K

Kaczynski, Theodore John “Ted” (1942-)

Ted Kaczynski, the notorious anarchist Unabomber, was born on May 22, 1942, in Chicago, Illinois. His father worked in a sausage factory in Chicago. Showing early promise in mathematics, Kaczynski graduated from Evergreen Park Community High School in 1958 at the age of sixteen. As a National Merit Scholarship finalist, he obtained a scholarship to Harvard University were he earned a B.S. in mathematics in 1962. After Harvard, Kaczynski moved to the University of Michigan where he studied advanced mathematics receiving his M.A. in 1965 and his Ph.D. in 1967. While at Michigan University, he won a prize for writing the best dissertation. In 1967 Kaczynski was offered and he accepted the position of assistant professor of mathematics at the University of California at Berkeley. Apparently successful both as a teacher and a researcher, he was making steady progress toward tenure. In January 1969, he abruptly resigned his teaching position and announced that he wanted to leave the field of mathematics.

Kaczynski retired from organized society by moving to the wilds of western Montana. He and his brother, David Kaczynski, bought an acre and a half on Bald Mountain near Lincoln, Montana. By 1972 Kaczynski had built a 10-by-12-foot primitive wooden cabin with no toilet, no plumbing, no water well, no sewage, no telephone, and no electricity. He survived by hunting small game. With no visible means of support, Kaczynski lived on occasional checks from his mother and brother.

Kaczynski opened his campaign against modern society in 1978. He admitted later that he initiated his bombing campaign after a logging road was constructed near his cabin. On May 25, 1978, Kaczynski sent a bomb in a package that was found in a parking lot at the University of Illinois at Chicago. A security guard was injured at Northwestern University the next day while opening the package. Two more bombs were found in 1979, and one of them exploded in the cargo hold of an American Airlines passenger jet. In 1980 and 1982, two more bombs injured people who opened his packages. In 1985 four bombs were delivered, and one of them killed Hugh Scrutton in Sacramento, California, on December 11. By this time a national hunt was on by federal authorities to find the bomber who had been dubbed the Unabomber. On February 20, 1987, a witness in Salt Lake City, Utah, spotted Kaczynski planting a bomb. After this narrow escape, Kaczynski retired from bomb making for the next six years. When he returned to bomb making, his explosive devices were more powerful. His new mail

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Encyclopedia of Modern Worldwide Extremists and Extremist Groups
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Chronology of Events vii
  • Introduction xxi
  • A 1
  • B 26
  • C 57
  • D 80
  • E 89
  • F 96
  • G 110
  • H 123
  • I 137
  • J 142
  • K 149
  • L 166
  • M 184
  • N 215
  • O 230
  • P 238
  • Q 252
  • R 253
  • S 267
  • T 291
  • U 301
  • V 304
  • W 306
  • Y 326
  • Z 328
  • Selected Bibliography 331
  • Index 339
  • About the Author 375
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