“Both the N.R.A. and the smaller but more strident Gun Owners of America have made Thursday’s House contempt vote crucial to their ratings of House lawmakers,” the New York Times opines. “The N.R.A. is pressing to win Democratic votes, said Wayne LaPierre, the group’s chief executive, and White House officials and House Democratic leaders concede that a handful of Democrats are likely to vote for the contempt resolution.” Their problem being? “That may be more a testament to the enduring power of the gun lobby than to the bipartisan belief that Mr. Holder and the Obama administration have stonewalled Congress over the gun-smuggling investigation known as Operation Fast and Furious.” Maybe. But probably not. And here’s the funny (ironic/moronic) thing . . .
Scribe Jonathan Weisman sees the Holder vote as a conspiracy by gun nuts who see Fast and Furious as a White House conspiracy to pump-up the numbers of U.S. gun store guns recovered at Mexican crime scenes to pave the way for draconian gun control laws. It’s a conspiracy theory about anti-conspiracist conspiracists, if you will.
As the White House hasn’t made a specific defense against charges that Fast and Furious was part of an “under the radar” gun control program, Weisman goes all anonymous source on his readers.
To White House officials, such assertions are bewildering. Fast and Furious was started by the Phoenix office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to track guns as they moved into Mexico from United States gun dealerships. Seeking to build a bigger case against high-ranking gunrunners, agents did not move quickly against weapons obtained by low-level smugglers, and they lost track of 2,000 guns, most of which probably reached Mexican drug cartels.
Two were found near the scene of a shootout in which a United States Border Patrol agent, Brian Terry, was killed.
Wow, that’s some serious spinmeisterwerk. (Kind of revolting really, when you consider that Brian Terry’s family might be reading it.)
First, if the White House is “bewildered” by the idea that Fast and Furious was an attempt to build support for gun control maybe they should explain why they deliberately mislead the public about the size of the “Iron River” (their term) of guns flowing from Bob’s Gun Store to Mexican drug thugs.
If you recall, they claimed that 90 percent of the guns recovered at Mexican crime scenes came from U.S. gun stores. When in fact 90 percent of the guns submitted by the Mexicans to the ATF for trace came from U.S. gun stores. A relatively small subgroup of a much larger number of guns confiscated by the Mexicans NOT submitted for trace.
A not so-surprising-fact considering that most of the cartel guns come from the Mexican military. Which bought them from Uncle Sam. Of course, we’d know the exact percentages and origins if the Mexicans provided all the data on all the guns—a practice that stopped just as Fast and Furious began.
No conspiracy there. That said, the President signed an executive order creating a new ATF long gun registry for four border states (8500) gun dealers during the investigation into F&F. I’m sure that a registry [allegedly] designed to thwart gun smuggling to Mexico had nothing to do with the fake stats about guns smuggled to Mexico. Pure coincidence.
I digress. Kinda.
Weisman’s claim that ATF agents “did not move quickly” against the guns that they pretty much placed into the hands of known criminals (with the help of the FBI’s subversion of their NICS background check system and the DEA’s cash) is deliberate disinformation.
There’s no getting around it: the ATF agents did not move at all against the Fast and Furious guns. We have sworn testimony from ATF Agent Dobson that his boss called him on the phone and ordered him NOT to arrest a gun smuggler when the guns and the smuggler were about to part company.
After 10 months and over 2000 weapons purchases, the program did not yield one single arrest. All the F&F-related arrests came after the black bag job was exposed. I repeat the ATF did not attempt to track the Fast and Furious guns.
That’s the crucial difference between Operation Wide Receiver (run under President Bush) and Operation Fast and Furious (run under President Obama). Not to mention the-guns-from-Florida-to-Honduras Operation Castaway (run concurrently with Fast and Furious). The ATF intentionally let guns walk. Hence the formerly frequently used nickname for F&F: “gunwalker.”
You can tell the New York Times scribe is in the bag for the White House when he says “most of [the F&F firearms] probably reached Mexican drug cartels. WTF? They people who bought them belonged to Mexican drug cartels. Does Weisman think some of the illegally-purchased guns went to sportsmen? Does he want us to think that?
Yes. Yes he does. Because the Times, like the White House, is looking for any wiggle room they can find. The gun nuts are nuts! It was a botched sting! Eric wants to surrender the documents! There’s an Inspector General’s report coming! The problem here: there’s only two possible reasons for the distinctly, intentionally arrest-less F&F: build a case for gun control or arm the drug thugs.
As the second explanation isn’t even on the table (anywhere but in this series), Weisman must confront the first. And the facts.
Among the thousands of pages of internal e-mails and documents Congressional investigators have gathered about the operation, they found a few showing that A.T.F. officials considered using some examples of documented gun flows to build a case for requiring greater reporting of multiple “long gun,” or rifle, sales by federally licensed gun shops. They singled out AK-47 assault-style rifles and their variants.
But the gun lobby is convinced that the documents being withheld would prove a far-reaching conspiracy to build support for a gun control agenda in a second Obama administration.
Is Congress being swayed by the “gun lobby” to issues a contempt citation to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to uncover the truth about Fast and Furious, its links to the White House and the coverup following the murder of U.S. Border Patrol Brian Terry at the hands of cartel members wielding weapons enabled by the ATF? God I hope so.