Fast & Furious II: The Sequel

Two of every three suspected crime guns recovered by Mexican authorities and reported to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives came from the U.S., according to data the agency released Thursday.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) said the new data make it “very clear that we need to increase our efforts to starve the supply of American weapons that arm Mexico’s brutal drug trafficking organizations.”

Aka Gun Control. Something wanna-be dictators always want.

In the end, ATF counts stolen guns in this data, guns sold to foreign governments by FFLs under the approval of the State Department in this data and counts guns ATF and DOJ purposely sent into Mexico as “guns being traced back to the U.S.” (Kate Pavlich)

So they can inflate the statistics and make it look worse so they can push for more gun control which is what Fast & furious was all about anyhow originally until it went tits-up on them.

“We also have to remember that the only guns Mexico is going to submit for tracing are guns they know are from the United States, which clearly paints an incomplete picture of the firearms found in the Mexico,” Sen. Grassley said. (townhall.com)

Now we have…GRENADES!

First it was “Operation Fast & Furious”…now there is a new scandal in the ATF. “Grenade Gate” is centered around alleged cartel arms dealer Jean Baptist Kingrey. ATF agents were supposed to be tracking Kingrey…but they let him go TWICE! The Justice Department just handed over a slew of disturbing new photos (including the ones below) to Congress shedding light on the case.(Greta Van Sustren)

They were tracking him, they lost him and lots of explosives made it across the border.

The ATF and/or the US Attorney’s office in Phoenix allowed at least 1,400 guns to be smuggled from the US to drug cartels in Mexico, ostensibly so they could track the guns up the food chain and then make big arrests. Instead, and tragically, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was murdered. One of the weapons nearby was indeed one that US law enforcement had allowed to pass through to Mexico. Other weapons have apparently been linked to other crimes.

US Attorney General for the District of Arizona, Dennis Burke, resigned  last year over Fast & Furious. But no one has actually been arrested, prosecuted or even charged because of this mess.

It gets worse. Burke may also have been involved in another smuggling attempt. This one involved parts for hundreds of grenades. The suspect, Jean Baptiste Kingery, was arrested in Arizona, only to be released hours later. ATF agents wanted him held but were overruled by the Attorney General’s office. Kingery was recently arrested in Mexico, with parts for yet hundreds of more grenades.

So how many guns and grenade parts have US law enforcement allowed to pass to drug cartels? More to the point, isn’t this against the law? It shouldn’t matter if law enforcement wanted to do a sting and track the weapons to cartel leaders. They did in fact allow guns to be smuggled into Mexico. This is not only wrong, it’s also, well, crazy. We’re supposed to be cooperating with Mexico yet they weren’t told.

The emails also show Obama administration officials acknowledging that they may lose track of grenades but would still be able to accomplish their original objective even if the grenades explode.

According to an internal email that was provided to Congress by the Department of Justice and first reported by CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson — who’s been the media’s most dogged reporter in tracking down facts on Fast and Furious – ATF began watching accused smuggler Jean Baptiste Kingery’s AK-47 purchases in 2004. In the 2009 internal ATF email, Obama administration officials admitted they believed Kingery was “trafficking them into Mexico.”

The 2009 email shows the ATF officials had then become aware of Kingery’s alleged grenade trafficking.

The administration officials then put together a plan: They secretly intercepted Kingery’s grenade parts after he ordered them online, marked them with special paint and gave them back to him. Then, they allowed him to take those grenade parts into Mexico. ATF was going to try to find his weapons factory there — even though the U.S. government and its federal law enforcement agencies have no jurisdiction in Mexico — with the apparent goal of building a bigger case against Kingery.

ATF agents had planned to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials — who, unlike ATF agents who ultimately report to Attorney General Eric Holder, report up the chain to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

The emails show ATF agents were aware they might lose track of Kingery while they allowed him to transport the grenade parts into Mexico. The emails also show ATF agents knew that the grenades could end up exploding and killing innocent people if they proceeded with the plan. That didn’t stop the Obama administration’s ATF from allowing the grenades to walk.

“Even in a post blast, as long as the safety lever is recovered we will be able to identify these tagged grenades,” an official wrote in one email.

Hey, even if they explode and kill people it’s ok!!! No need to do anything about it because we can still get what WE want out of it!

According to Attkisson’s report, officials had taken Kingery into custody in 2010 — long before Border Patrol agent Brian Terry was murdered with a Fast and Furious-supplied gun — after having caught him trying to transport that ammunition and those grenade parts and fuse assemblies into Mexico hidden inside the spare tire of the SUV he was travelling in.

Attkisson said that ATF agents questioned Kingery at that point but then “inexplicably released” him.

“We are forbidden from doing that type of activity,” ATF’s Mexico attaché, Carlos Canino wrote in one email. “If ICE is telling you they can do that, they are full of shit.”

According to the Journal article, the June decision to release Kingery:

“… is at the crux of a bitter fight between ATF agents and prosecutors at the U.S. attorney’s office in Phoenix. The lead ATF agent on the grenades case, Peter Forcelli, “was horrified with the thought of releasing this individual” and “practically begged” senior prosecutor Emory Hurley “for permission to arrest the suspect on a criminal complaint…”

An e-mail later surfaced in which Burke wrote, “Agree [with] the course of action as the variables play out.” (New Times 2011)

Sources tell CBS News that, in January 2010, ATF had Kingery under surveillance after he bought about 50 grenade bodies and headed to Mexico. But they say prosecutors wouldn’t agree to make a case. So, as ATF agents looked on, Kingery and the grenade parts crossed the border — and simply disappeared.

Six months later, Kingery allegedly got caught leaving the U.S. for Mexico with 114 disassembled grenades in a tire. One ATF agent told investigators he literally begged prosecutors to keep Kingery in custody this time, fearing he was supplying narco-terrorists, but was again ordered to let Kingery go.

The prosecutors — already the target of controversy for overseeing “Fast and Furious,” wouldn’t comment on the grenades case. U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke recently resigned and his assistant, Emory Hurley, has been transferred. Sources say Hurley is the one who let Kingery go, saying grenade parts are “novelty items” and the case “lacked jury appeal.” (Michelle Malkin 2011)

But don’t worry, they knew nothing about all this. It was all Bush’s/Someone else’s Fault! 🙂

And we just need more Gun Control in THIS country!!

Not one government official has been held accountable for Operation Fast and Furious. (DC)

The top Justice Department official who signed a letter erroneously telling lawmakers investigating “Operation Fast and Furious” that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives never allowed guns to be sold to cartel members will be leaving the department to head up a law school.

He previously served as Chief Counsel to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.,
Hmmm….
Another rat desserts the ship before he has to rat on Holder.

Weich himself testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform committee in June 2011. He mostly testified about the Justice Department’s efforts to comply with congressional subpoenas, but he was also asked about the Feb. 4, 2011, letter.

“Every time the Justice Department sends a letter to Congress, it is true to the best of our knowledge at the time that we send it,” he said. Still, he insisted again that ATF “doesn’t sanction or approve of the transfer of weapons to Mexico.” (FOX)

And if we have to retract it later, as this one was, as being blatantly false and misleading that wasn’t our fault that you discovered it was false. 🙂

So Burke is gone, his replacement was an idiot, and several other flunkies have deserted the Ship and ATF and ICE are both left with sh*t on their face but yet, curiously no is being prosecuted for this fiasco. Holder says they are “investigating” but curiously nothing has been happening for more than a year.

Attorney General Eric Holder and “Big Sis” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napalitano are curiously still here too. The Peter Principle in action.

Curiouser and Curiouser… 🙂

WASHINGTON — Republican House leaders have drafted a proposed contempt of Congress citation against Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. in which they charge that he and his Justice Department have repeatedly “obstructed and slowed” the Capitol Hill investigation into the ATF’s flawed Fast and Furious gun-tracking operation.

The 48-page draft citation is being drawn up by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Top committee officials recently met for most of a day in the House speaker’s office and were given the green light to proceed toward a contempt citation, according to sources who declined to be identified.

The draft describes a 2010 meeting in the office of then-acting Deputy Atty. Gen. Gary G. Grindler in which charts were presented showing 31 people had illegally paid cash for 1,026 weapons. Also shown were the locations of “stash houses” before the weapons were moved to Mexico.

“Despite receiving all this information … Grindler did not order Fast and Furious to be shut down, nor did he follow up with ATF or his staff about the investigation,” the draft says.

Grindler, however, has told congressional investigators that he was not advised at the meeting about the unusual tactics used by ATF agents in allowing the guns to be illegally sold under Fast and Furious. (LA Times)

But he didn’t do anything about it either!!

Yet another, stooge. Geez, they come out of the woodwork like cockroaches!

Gun, Grenades, eh, so what…No Big Deal. It’s all Bush’s Fault anyhow! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

 Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy

 

 

Security, It’s Our Job

Notes on that “more secure” Border.

PHOENIX (KPHO) –   A suspected human smuggler who  has been deported 14 times was among a group of illegal immigrants  arrested Monday night in Arizona, the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office  said.

Juan Ramos-Alegria was most recently arrested one week ago in Colorado, MCSO said.

Five suspected illegal immigrants, including Ramos-Alegria, were apprehended without incident.

Sheriff’s investigators said the immigrants  had paid anywhere from $1,500 to $2,000 each to be smuggled into the  U.S. Those arrested reported to be heading to Arkansas and Georgia as  their final destination, MCSO said.

So how long before #15??

Just days prior to that:

(Maricopa County, AZ) Sheriff Joe Arpaio reports that the Maricopa County
Sheriffs Office Human Smuggling Unit arrested 12 illegal aliens involved in
smuggling operations last night in the north valley, including the smuggler Ivan
Lara-Roque who has been previously deported from the United States 13 times
and has been permanently banned from entering the United States.

But don’t worry, if you want to enforce the law Attorney General Holder will just sue you and sell guns to the Drug Cartel members who are trying to kill you.

No Problem. If they, the Government, want to ignore the law and the security and safety of the US Citizens there is nothing you can do. Just suck it up, even if it’s lead.

Documents show that the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) discussed using their covert operation “Fast and Furious” to argue for controversial new rules about gun sales.

In Fast and Furious, ATF secretly encouraged gun dealers to sell to suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels to go after the “big fish.” But ATF whistleblowers told Congress it was a dangerous practice called “gunwalking,” and it put thousands of weapons on the street. Many were used in violent crimes in Mexico. Two were found at the murder scene of a U.S. Border Patrol agent.

ATF officials didn’t intend to publicly disclose their own role in letting Mexican cartels obtain the weapons, but emails show they discussed using the sales, including sales encouraged by ATF, to justify a new gun regulation called “Demand Letter 3”. That would require some U.S. gun shops to report the sale of multiple rifles or “long guns.” Demand Letter 3 was so named because it would be the third ATF program demanding gun dealers report tracing information.

On July 14, 2010 after ATF headquarters in Washington D.C. received an update on Fast and Furious, ATF Field Ops Assistant Director Mark Chait emailed Bill Newell, ATF’s Phoenix Special Agent in Charge of Fast and Furious:

“Bill – can you see if these guns were all purchased from the same (licensed gun dealer) and at one time. We are looking at anecdotal cases to support a demand letter on long gun multiple sales. Thanks.”

At least 300 people in Mexico have been killed with Fast and Furious weapons, as was U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry who records were sealed by the Administration so no one can see them. But they have nothing to hide. 🙂
And who will Holder through under the bus tomorrow to deflect blame from himself and his cronies???
Now, Would you like some salt for those wounds?
Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

The House committee probing government gun-running now sets it sights on possible money-laundering involving drug cartel funds run in the name of drug enforcement. Why should we believe DOJ this time?It’s an old adage that when investigating criminal activity you should follow the money. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, has announced an investigation into a money-laundering operation allegedly run by the Drug Enforcement Administration. We may need to follow the people following the money.

Just as Fast and Furious was allegedly intended to track and interdict gun-trafficking into Mexico, this operation, detailed in a New York Times article Sunday, is said to have as its purpose to follow how criminal organizations move their money, where they keep their assets and, most important, who their leaders are.

But the question once again arises: Have the feds interrupted or aided the flow?

After a Friday document dump showing how deliberately deceptive the Department of Justice and Attorney General Eric Holder were regarding Operation Fast and Furious, the government’s gun-running operation that led to the death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, it’s hard to believe this latest scheme was well-run.

In a Monday letter to Holder, Issa noted that as in Fast and Furious “this same goal of dismantling Mexican drug cartels motivated the Drug Enforcement Administration in aiding and abetting these same cartels in laundering millions of dollars in cash.”

It may have produced equally tragic results.

According to the Times report, agents said the requirement that the laundering of amounts greater than $10 million get formal DOJ approval was routinely waived.

According to Issa, that means “hundreds of millions of dollars” could’ve been “laundered” into the hands of drug cartels by the Obama administration and Holder’s Justice Department.

The Times quoted an agency official, who asked not to be identified: “My rule was that if we are going to launder money, we better show results. Otherwise, the DEA could wind up being the largest money launderer in the business, and that money results in violence and deaths.”

Is that the case?

In anticipation of Holder’s testimony on Thursday, Issa requested that his staff be fully briefed on the money-laundering operation no later than 5 p.m. Wednesday and that he would not accept on Thursday another my-dog-ate-the-memo excuse for not knowing what his department and its agencies were doing.

If this was a clone of Fast and Furious, this time involving money rather than guns, we need to know the extent of the damage. Money is the lifeblood of drug-trafficking, and we may have only succeeded in giving the drug lords a transfusion.

We have argued the possibility that Fast and Furious was a planned attempt to augment gun violence in Mexico using U.S. weapons as a predicate to pushing for more gun control.

Aiding and abetting the money laundering of these same drug cartels is equally unconscionable.

We agree with Issa that it is “almost unfathomable to contemplate the degree to which the United States government has made itself an accomplice to the Mexican drug trade, which has thus far left more than 40,000 people dead in Mexico since December 2006.”

This latest scheme involves handling blood money.

Some 52 GOP congressmen and two senators have called for Eric Holder’s resignation or firing. Maybe when President Obama gets back from his 17-day vacation. (IBD)

Political Cartoons by Ken Catalino

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

Political Cartoons by Eric Allie