Did AG Holder know about Fast and Furious long before he claimed to have known?

January 29, 2012

I know, I know. The idea that Attorney General Eric Holder, that paragon of the Rule of Law, might have lied to the House Oversight Committee when he claimed he had heard of Operation Fast and Furious “only a few weeks” before his testimony last May is hard to accept. Inconceivable, in fact.

Except that’s not what the latest Friday-night dump of emails seems to say:

Also among the documents are Justice Department emails involving a former top aide to Attorney General Eric Holder. The emails show that then-deputy chief of staff Monty Wilkinson was notified by then-U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke the day after [Border Patrol Agent Brian] Terry was slain that guns found at the murder scene were connected to an investigation that Burke and Wilkinson had planned to discuss. The emails did not identify the investigation, but it was Operation Fast and Furious.

(Emphases added)

Keep this in mind: Wilkinson was Holder’s deputy chief of staff and, while the name “Fast and Furious” wasn’t used, it’s not credible that he didn’t know that was the investigation Burke was referring to. The mention in the email indicates a reference to an earlier conversation or conversations.

What’s even more unbelievable is that Wilkinson, having received news of the death of a federal agent by criminals using weapons they obtained as part of this “investigation” wouldn’t tell his boss, the chief of staff, and that neither of them would tell their “boss of bosses.”

Attorney General Eric Holder.

So, to ask of Mr. Holder the famous question from Watergate — What did he know and when did he know it? — we now have a pretty good idea.

He likely knew everything and he knew it at the latest the day after Brian Terry was murdered.

Months before he claimed in his testimony.

So either the Attorney General of the United States either lied under oath to the committee, or his memory is so bad regarding important DoJ events that he is incompetent to serve in his office.

Regardless (and my bet is on “liar”), Eric Holder is unfit to be US Attorney General and must go.

LINKS. More at Hot Air. Earlier Gunwalker posts.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

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Eric Holder is a funny man

December 30, 2011

So funny, in fact, it makes you wish you could smack him across his sanctimonious, hypocritical mouth:

The number of officers killed in the line of duty jumped 13 percent in 2011 compared with the year before — and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder condemned the increase as “a devastating and unacceptable trend” that he blamed on illegal firearms.

The number of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty rose to 173 this year, from 153 in 2010, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund announced Wednesday. This year’s figure is 23 percent higher than 122 killed in the line of duty in 2009.

Holder said “too many guns have fallen into the hands of those who are not legally permitted to possess them,” in explaining the increase.

Four words for you, Mr. Attorney-General: Operation Fast and Furious (1). It takes a special kind of brass to stand there po-faced before the press and cluck your tongue about the number of officers killed by illegal weapons, considering agencies under your supervision supplied thousands of firearms (and even grenades?) to Mexican drug cartels, even laundering money for them.

Let’s forget for a moment the over 200 Mexican civilians, soldiers, and federal agents killed by weapons supplied by Operation Fast and Furious (aka “Gunwalker”). After all, no one cares about dead Mexicans, do they?

But let’s talk about cops, law-enforcement officers, since you’re so obviously concerned about their safety. Persons such as Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, gunned down by smugglers in Arizona in late 2010: two weapons found at the scene were linked to Gunwalker, while a possible third “walked” firearm, which may have fired the killing shots, has gone missing.

And that makes this ending to the Politico piece so… special:

For much of the past year, one fatality in particular has weighed heavily on Holder’s mind, that of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, whose December 2010 murder sparked interest and public investigations into the Justice Department’s botched Fast and Furious gun-walking program.

Yeah, I bet it weighs heavily on his mind — as a reminder of his moral or even criminal guilt and his incompetence.

But, it not just one Border Patrol officer on some lonely stretch of the border, Eric. Guns linked to Operation Fast and Furious have been found at the scenes of at least 11 violent crimes inside the United States. There is evidence for other Gunwalker-style operations in states as far from the border as Indiana.

How many of those weapons have been involved in the cop-killings you decry, Mr. Attorney General? How much of that increase has been fed by your department? And yet you can stand there and feign outrage over “illegal firearms?”

Maybe you’re impressed with this farcical bit of mummery. Maybe the lackey media is, too.

But, I assure you, the rest of us aren’t.

via Pirate’s Cove

RELATED: Earlier posts about Gunwalker.

UPDATE: Welcome readers of The Sundries Shack!

Footnote:
(1) Executive summary: Gunwalker was a joint operation of several American law-enforcement agencies and apparently run out of the US Attorney’s office in Arizona. Legitimate gun-dealers in Arizona were encouraged by these agencies to sell thousands of heavy firearms to “straw buyers,” persons acting as covert agents for Mexican drug cartels. No effort was made to trace or keep track of these weapons, which are only found again when they turn up at crime scenes or during police operations. Unlike an earlier (but very different) operation, the Mexican government was not consulted for this, nor were our agents in Mexico kept informed. As a consequence, people have died on both sides of the border and the DoJ is stonewalling to a degree not seen since Nixon. Yeah, it’s a big steaming mess.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Gunwalker: more evidence of a third gun at the Terry murder — Updated

September 20, 2011

Let’s call it the “tale of the tape.” CBS’s Sharyl Attkisson obtained access to a recorded conversation between an ATF agent and a legal gun dealer in Arizona, who apparently was the source of the two “walked” firearms found at the crime scene. But during the conversation, mention is made of a third assault rifle:

Agent: Well there was two.

Dealer: There’s three weapons.

Agent: There’s three weapons.

Dealer: I know that.

Agent: And yes, there’s serial numbers for all three.

Dealer: That’s correct.

Agent: Two of them came from this store.

Dealer: I understand that.

Agent: There’s an SKS that I don’t think came from…. Dallas or Texas or something like that.

Dealer: I know. talking about the AK’s

Agent: The two AK’s came from this store.

Dealer: I know that.

Agent: Ok.

Dealer: I did the Goddamned trace

Agent: Third weapon is the SKS has nothing to do with it.

Dealer: That didn’t come from me.

Agent: No and there is that’s my knowledge. and I spoke to someone who would know those are the only ones they have. So this is the agent who’s working the case, all I can go by is what she told me.

(Emphases added.)

The agent’s last statement is a little unclear as to whether it means the SKS had “nothing to do” with the Terry killing or with the dealer’s store. What this exchange does in spades, however, is add weight to earlier email revelations about the existence of a third gun that “somehow” has gone missing from the evidence.

Earlier speculation was that the gun was “disappeared” to protect a high-level informant planted in the cartels, who would be exposed were the gun to become part of the public record.

However, Allahpundit at Hot Air raises another possibility: what if this missing SKS was the gun that fired the shot that killed Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry? Neither of the two AKs has been identified as the fatal weapon, implying that Terry might not have been killed with a “walked” firearm. If this putative third weapon fired the killing shot, however, then you have a direct connection between Operation Fast and Furious and the murder of a US federal agent.

The incentive some people might have to make this gun vanish seems pretty clear.

Eventually, the truth is going to come out about this; there are too many cracks in this story, already. I remember Watergate: the continual drip of questions and answers that lead to more questions, each round slowly eroding the wall around the truth until, one day, someone talked. And then it all came tumbling down around the Nixon administration.

Remember one thing, though: in Watergate, no one died.

In Operation Fast and Furious, however, one, perhaps two, US federal agents may have been killed with guns provided by the US government to Mexican drug cartels. Over 150 Mexican soldiers, federal agents, and civilians have been killed with “walked” weapons — and that number is growing. There is even evidence of other Gunwalker-style operations elsewhere in the US, with the weapons from which playing a part in who-knows-what-or-how-many crimes.

This isn’t going away.

RELATED: At Pajamas Media, Bob Owens suspect a Cloward-Piven strategy in play. I’m not yet ready to assume conspiracy when “felony stupid” will do, however.

UPDATE: The number of Gunwalker-related killings is indeed growing: the Attorney General of Mexico has listed 200 deaths related to the Obama-administration scandal, in addition to at least eleven crimes within the United States.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Gunwalker: did the FBI cover up evidence in the Brian Terry killing?

September 9, 2011

Brian Terry was a US Border Patrol agent killed last year near the Mexican border in Arizona a gun-battle with what were then described as “bandits.” Two of the guns used to kill Agent Terry were traced to a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATF) operation called “Fast and Furious” (aka “Gunwalker”), which allowed the illegal purchase of weapons at US gun shops by straw buyers for Mexican drug cartels and then allowed them to be “walked” over the border to the real buyers.

No, I have no idea what they were thinking, either.

Now evidence has come out that there was a third Gunwalker firearm at Terry’s killing, and that the FBI may have covered it up to protect a confidential informant planted with the cartels:

Sources say emails support their contention that the FBI concealed evidence to protect a confidential informant. Sources close to the Terry case say the FBI informant works inside a major Mexican cartel and provided the money to obtain the weapons used to kill Terry.

Unlike the two AK-style assault weapons found at the scene, the third weapon could more easily be linked to the informant. To prevent that from happening, sources say, the third gun “disappeared.”

In addition to the emails obtained by Fox News, an audio recording from a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agent investigating the Terry case seems to confirm the existence of a third weapon. In that conversation, the agent refers to an “SKS assault rifle out of Texas” found at the Terry murder scene south of Tucson.

The FBI refused to answer a detailed set of questions submitted to officials by Fox News. Instead, agency spokesman Paul Bresson said, “The Brian Terry investigation is still ongoing so I cannot comment.” Bresson referred Fox News to court records that only identify the two possible murder weapons.

However, in the hours after Terry was killed on Dec. 14, 2010, several emails written to top ATF officials suggest otherwise.

In one, an intelligence analyst writes that by 7:45 p.m. — about 21 hours after the shooting — she had successfully traced two weapons at the scene, and is now “researching the trace status of firearms recovered earlier today by the FBI.”

In another email, deputy ATF-Phoenix director George Gillett asks: “Are those two (AK-47s) in addition to the gun already recovered this morning?”

Be sure to read the rest.

Meanwhile, I’d sure like to know the answer to Mr. Gillett’s question, wouldn’t you? And, beyond that, where did the third gun go and who gave the orders not to include it in the evidence recovered from the crime scene?

We’re not just talking about a huge federal scandal involving multiple agencies here. A US Border Patrol agent was killed with weapons allowed purposefully to fall into the hands of the bad guys. Simple justice for Agent Terry and his family (who have been treated shabbily by the US Attorney’s office in Arizona) demands that the truth come out.

It’s time for people to start testifying under oath, both before Congress and a grand jury. And if the Obama administration won’t agree to a special prosecutor, then the attorney general offices in the affected states should open their own investigations. Surely there were multiple state laws broken here, too.

via Nice Deb through Michelle Malkin.

RELATED: Earlier Gunwalker posts.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Border Patrol Agent killed in southern Arizona

December 15, 2010

The federal government is suing the state of Arizona for trying to do the job the Obama administration refuses to do: control illegal border crossings.

This is the result of federal abdication:

The U.S. Border Patrol says that one of its agents has been shot to death after a confrontation in southern Arizona.

Border Patrol spokesman Eric Cantu confirmed the agent’s death to The Associated Press on Wednesday morning.

Cantu tells KTVK-TV the agent is identified as Brian Terry. Cantu says Terry was shot and killed after confronting several suspects near Rio Rico north of Nogales.

At least four people are in custody and possibly one more remains at large.

There are no details about the arrested people, but it wouldn’t surprise me to learn that Agent Terry had come across drug smugglers, who are often heavily armed — and even maintain bases inside US territory.

Earlier this year, a rancher in Arizona was gunned down on his own property, perhaps by a cartel scout. A few months ago, a man enjoying some sightseeing with his wife on Falcon Lake in Texas had his head blown off by cartel gunmen.  Now a Border Patrol agent has been shot dead.

While it would be an overstatement to say the situation in our southern borderlands is a war, it is increasingly lawless and dangerous. There are even areas of American parklands that Americans are warned not to enter, for fear of Mexican drug smugglers.

Local and state law enforcement agencies are being overwhelmed, as is the undermanned Border Patrol. Rather than trying to take over whole swathes of the economy, shouldn’t the President of the United States be doing the job he’s been assigned?

Oh, wait. I forgot the guy in the Oval Office doesn’t really want the job.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)