04/15/1998 AT 12:00 AM EDT
The world's largest retailer, Wal-Mart, will not sell "American Terrorist: Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City Bombing," a controversial new book in which the unrepentant convicted bomber refers to his child victims as "collateral damage," in any of its 1,724 stores. "We're not carrying it," Tom Williams, a spokesman for the Arkansas-based chain, told the Associated Press on Thursday. "We believe that's what most of our store associates and customers would expect from us." The book's authors, Buffalo (N.Y.) News reporters Lou Michel and Dan Herbeck, spent 75 hours interviewing McVeigh in prison. All this week on the "Today" show and other news programs, as well as in print, survivors of those who were killed in what has been called possibly the worst American tragedy in modern history have attacked the book, its authors and their publisher, ReganBooks/HarperCollins, for, in their words, providing McVeigh a platform to air his anti-government opinions. In response, the authors are saying that they are being condemned even before the public has had a chance to examine their the book, which also contains interviews with FBI agents, victims, McVeigh's friends and family and his psychiatrist. McVeigh, who has no financial interest in the book, is scheduled to be executed May 16.