August 23, 2011

The Fife Element

"I believe the primary purpose of Gunrunner was so the the administration could be shocked, shocked! that American guns were being used by drug runners in Mexico and thus have an excuse for ever more draconian gun laws in the US.

"It's as though Barney Fife sold his only bullet to the bad guys, hoping to arrest them after they'd shot someone."

That droll summary by a commenter to a post on the blog Wizbang! over the weekend sums up the opinion of a growing number of Americans that are learning of the "Gunwalker" scandal and the apparent cover-up of the botched program by elements of the Executive branch.

Operation Fast and Furious was a poorly conceived and ineptly executed multi-agency scheme that Obama Administration officials claim was a attempt to catch trafficking rings supplying Mexican drug cartels with weapons from U.S. gun shops.

What actually transpired is that a multiple-agency federal anti-crime task force composed of agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (BATF), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) watched and effectively provided a law enforcement shield so that a relative handful of low-level gun runners without any ties to cartel leaders were allowed to traffic 2,020 firearms to the foot soldiers of the Sinaloa drug cartel.

The strike force placed tracers (GPS "bugs") on just two of 2020 weapons; there was no possible way of tracking them. Nor was there a possible mechanism of affecting arrests of cartel leaders in Mexico. Worse, they purposefully kept Mexican officials in the dark about the operation.

The weapons seem to have been sent to Mexico for one reason only; to be used in crimes. When the weapons were discarded at crimes scenes--which gunmen frequently did to avoid to being tied to specific murders via ballistic forensics--the recovered weapons were traced by the BATF and used to manufacture evidence to support President Obama's dishonest claim that U.S. guns stores were the primary supplier of cartel weapons. The President and federal law enforcement agencies reporting to him seemed to be working on gun control "under the radar," indeed.

The gun-running operation came to an end only after a U.S. border Patrol Agent was gunned down in a firefight, and two of the weapons were traced back to the operation, at which point whistleblowers within the BATF came forward to expose the plot.

It has been more than six months since Operation Fast and Furious was exposed, and during that time the federal law enforcement agencies involved in the scandal have participated in what appears to be a high-level cover-up of the operation, and one that the Obama Administration and their allies in the media are desperately trying to contain. They are using a number of methods, including attacking congressional investigators, stonewalling requests for information, and controlling individual employees inside the operation by recalling them to Washington and putting them in desk jobs where they can be more easily monitored.

Despite the stonewalling attempts of the Administration, it is becoming increasingly difficult to hold up the preferred narrative of a localized law enforcement operation gone horribly wrong.

The mainstream media and the White House are eager to portray Operation Fast and Furious as a solitary and limited operation that was the responsibility of a small band of BATF misfits in Arizona, backed by an overzealous U.S. District Attorney.

While the Administration has continued to push that story, emails confirm that every director of a law enforcement agency within the Department of Justice was briefed on the scheme from the beginning, and that FBI criminal informants were part of the plot.

Dennis Burke, the U.S. Attorney that holds at significant responsibly for this debacle is a close confidant of Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano; he was her Chief of Staff when she was the governor of Arizona and their relationship no doubt played a role is his appointment as a U.S. attorney, one of dozens of politicized hirings in the Department of Justice that other PJMedia reporters have been following. Despite these close ties between Burke Napolitano, the media and White House are doing their best to try to pretend that this was a BATF operation, with minimal contacts with other elements of the DOJ or from other branches of government.

We must ask ourselves as rational people, "How likely is it that someone as deeply connected to law enforcement in Arizona as Janet Napolitano as former governor and state attorney general, who is now the Secretary of Homeland Security with a huge stake in the events occurring along the southern border, has a close confident and former staffer as the U.S. Attorney running Operation Fast and Furious, and she knew nothing about the operation?" It is almost inconceivable that Napolitano wasn't directly involved in briefings regarding Operation Fast and Furious from the very beginning; one could and perhaps should make the argument that she has even more reason to be aware of and involved with Operation than any of the other directors or cabinet level officials that had a role in the plot. You won't see her name mentioned in the narrative however; it simply won't do to have another Cabinet level official facing fire in editorials and from Congressional investigators.

The mainstream media not pursuing this line of questioning because they've invested their own "single bullet" on the claim that Operation Fast and Furious was a horrible, but isolated mistake. But emerging evidence suggests that Fast and Furious was just one element of a scandal we know as "Gunwalker," with allegations of operations in two Texas field operations areas and one in Florida already on congressional radar and subject to inquires by Senators and Congresspersons alike.

And some media outlets are becoming tired of the obedient elitist press corps.

As the Dallas Morning News vents, "details only get worse" in regards to the Gunwalker conspiracy. CNS News pointedly notes that the Justice Department is being as vague as possible, dancing around the question of, "What did Attorney General Eric Holder know, and when did he know it?"

In an interview with Human Events, House Oversight and Government Reform committee member Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona's 1st District admits that the President himself is a potential target of the investigation.

Goser indicates that Operation Fast and Furious is the focus of the current investigation, but notes that they are aware of other allegations, including plots to supply both the Sinaloa cartel and the Zetas with weapons, which could be the basis for even wider investigations of the Obama Administration's role is supply drug cartels with advanced weaponry.

Those close to the investigation seem to think that evidence of corruption and criminality in Operation Fast and Furious may be enough not to bring down just U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, but his peers and perhaps even the Obama Administration.

Barney seems to have fired his only bullet, and shot himself in the foot in the process.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at August 23, 2011 09:20 AM

Aiding and abetting murder of their own citizens.
Just following in the footsteps of Marxist everywere . May they all "go staight to hell" with Rep. Maxin Waters ! Sooner or later we will have to take to the streets to defeat these ruthless marxist,you know that don't you?

Posted by: Jackosan at August 24, 2011 09:34 AM