The Fast and Furious scandal is on holiday at the moment. Congressional hearings poking into Uncle Sam’s gun and grenade running operations will continue in the New Year. There will be a steady drip of revelations about the ATF et al.’s dirty dealings with Mexican narcoterrorists that will torpedo the Obama administration’s credibility on national security, ethical transparency and moral integrity. Meanwhile, the Mexican government continues its covert cooperation with the American federales, helping their neighbors to the north destroy any physical evidence of collusion . . .
Since the inception in 2002, the Ministry of Public Security of Baja California has destroyed more than 30,000 firearms, while during 2011 they disabled 2,138 pieces.
The 2011 stat in elimparcial.com‘s report refers to weapons “delivered to military installations by people socially responsible.” Guns exchanged for a 1500 peso grocery voucher. How many were eTraced against the ATF’s database, which includes firearms “walked” during Operation Fast and Furious? I’m thinking . . . none.
The Mexican government is doing its level best to keep all the weapons that it’s recovered—including those found at crime scenes—from inspection. Remember that the Mexicans used to provide a full accounting of recovered firearms. That practice stopped shortly before Operation Fast and Furious went live.
Also, clock this from an msnbc.com “Iron River” propaganda piece, dated 2010:
Meanwhile, Mexican authorities are taking steps to ensure the weapons that are seized don’t find their way back to the cartels.
At a military base, in Mexico City, soldiers use torches and hammers to destroy thousands of guns, saving others for evidence in criminal investigations.
The photo caption claims the Mexican government destroyed 90k weapons in four years (2006 – 2010). Despite the need for hard evidence of ATF gun running (ostensibly to capture the “bad guys”) and data on the “seepage” of American-supplied military weapons to narcoterrorists—or because of it—the Mexican melt-down continues. Are they saving F&F firearms? You must be joking mate . . .
On this side of the border, the ATF has admitted that it enabled over 2000 weapons during the ten months that Operation Fast and Furious was live. The feds “recovery” of these firearms has been . . . irregular. As far as we know, and we don’t know much, some 400 guns have been accounted for. The last specific heads-up hit the net in November via azstarnet.com:
When investigators served search warrants in central and southern Arizona Oct. 13, they recovered two firearms that had been sold as part of Operation Fast and Furious, the discredited investigation into gun smuggling.
But any further details are proving hard to find . . .
Where the weapons were found and what sort of guns they were is as yet unknown. Drew Wade, a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives spokesman, told me his agency is prohibited by law from revealing gun-trace results and referred me to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. But ICE, as that agency is known, initially said that information is ATF’s responsibility and so far has no other comment.
No update available. In other words, the coverup continues.
The Fast and Furious scandal broke through the blog barrier into the mainstream media when Mexican drug thugs (FBI informant on board) gunned down U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry with ATF enabled AKs. The last thing the U.S. and Mexican governments want: another U.S. citizen killed by an ATF-enabled firearm.
And yet it’s a distinct possibility. For all we know, it may have already happened. [Note: it sucks that Mexicans murdered by F&F firearms are considered collateral damage---if they're even considered.] If Congressional investigators want to get to the bottom of the Fast and Furious conspiracy (which involves at least nine federal agencies), they need to do what the ATF never did: follow the guns.