ATF Death Watch 88: FFL Letter Destroys “Botched Sting” Defense


A letter published by the gun bloggers at The Sipsey Street Irregulars and the Gun Rights Examiner reveals that the ATF purchased firearms from American gun dealers and delivered them into the hands of Mexican gun smugglers. The June 2010 missive is a short and damning document. [Click here to download the pdf.] Then-ATF Phoenix Group VII Supervisor David Voth asks an unidentified Federal Firearms Licensee to sell ATF Special Agent John Dodson a Draco 7.62×39 mm pistol. Voth directs the gun dealer to forgo the usual federal formalities (Form 4473). A hand-scribbled addition notes that the ATF paid cash for the Draco.

There’s no way around the obvious conclusion: ATF operation known as Fast and Furious was actively engaged in gun smuggling. The Bureau was not the beleaguered passive observer that the Power That Be would have the public believe. Sipsey Street’s Vanderboegh hammers the nails into the coffin containing that excuse.

The existence of this letter provided to these reporters by a previously reliable source familiar with the Fast and Furious investigation, coupled with interviews of other sources across the country which put it into context, provides startling proof that the Federal government did not merely “lose track” of weapons purchased by “straw buyers” under surveillance by the ATF and destined for the Mexican drug cartels. In an undercover operation ordered by Fast and Furious supervisor David Voth, the U.S. government purchased firearms with taxpayer money from licensed firearms dealers, instructed them to conduct the sales “off the books,” and used an ATF agent, John Dodson, to deliver them directly to people that Dodson believed were conducting them across the border.

Which still beggars the question: why? Why was the U.S. government so hot to send firearms down the mythical “iron river” of weapons flowing from U.S. gun stores to Mexican drug thugs?

There are competitive—and complimentary—theories. But one thing is for sure: Operation Fast and Furious and Operation Castaway and whatever you want to call the operation that let grenades go South and official U.S. firearms and grenade sales (that somehow seeped) to the cartels indicate a distinct pattern of behavior. A policy, if you will.

Even as Congress investigates Fast and Furious, they should focus their attention on the administration’s wider policy towards Mexican narco-terrorists. It’s time to wake up. Our neighbor to the south is in the midst of a mind-bendingly horrific full-scale civil war. We need to figure out what we as a nation needs to do (e.g. deploy the U.S. military to seal our border) and do it soon.