The Firing Line Forums

Go Back   The Firing Line Forums > The Conference Center > Law and Civil Rights

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old August 29, 2012, 10:03 PM   #2551
alan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 7, 1999
Posts: 3,722
Aguila Blanca wrote, if I understand correctly:

However, any and all of the BATFE agents who knowingly and willingly participated in allowing (and encouraging, and facilitating) the illegal sales of the firearms used and the transportation of those firearms across an international border contrary to U.S. law, Mexican law, and international law, most assuredly should be charged with conspiracy to commit various firearms offenses; with being an accessory to various firearms offenses; with aiding and abetting the commission of various firearms offenses; and possibly with being accessories to the murder of Agent Terry.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Re the above, yes, they certainly should be, and then re the following,

They should NOT be allowed to hide behind "the Agency told me to do it, I was only following orders." That approach was discredited at Nuremberg, it should not be allowed here in the U.S. Further, if any of the BATFE people involved were ever in the military, they should know that under the UCMJ a soldier not only does not have to follow an unlawful order, he/she is required to disobey the unlawful order and to report it up the chain of command.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
They most likely will be, which strikes me as rather sad, possibly displaying a failing of understanding on my part.
alan is offline  
Old August 29, 2012, 10:19 PM   #2552
zxcvbob
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 20, 2007
Location: S.E. Minnesota
Posts: 4,028
Quote:
and possibly with being accessories to the murder of Agent Terry.
Agents Terry and Zapata. And possibly war crimes against Mexico. There's more than enough here to seek the death penalty. (the problem with that is they might testify against their bosses at the Cabinet level and beyond, and nobody wants that)

Nothing is going to happen. Obama and Holder and Napolitano and various congressional leaders will not allow anything to happen.
__________________
"The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun"
zxcvbob is online now  
Old August 30, 2012, 08:21 AM   #2553
Spats McGee
Staff
 
Join Date: July 28, 2010
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 4,722
I really don't know if this is related, but I can imagine that it might be. It looks like BATFE is looking for a new Deputy Associate Chief Counsel in the West Region. http://www.justice.gov/careers/legal...-occ-ad-wr.htm
__________________
A gunfight is not the time to learn new skills.

If you ever have a real need for more than a couple of magazines, your problem is not a shortage of magazines. It's a shortage of people on your side of the argument. -- Art Eatman
Spats McGee is offline  
Old August 30, 2012, 09:22 AM   #2554
ChuckS
Member
 
Join Date: March 4, 2009
Location: Albion, PA
Posts: 74
So if the new policy is to throw agents under the bus for actions approved by their supervisor/manager then this will lead to unrest throughout the bureau. Ouch.
ChuckS is offline  
Old August 30, 2012, 10:11 AM   #2555
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,104
Quote:
then this will lead to unrest throughout the bureau. Ouch.
Based on the posts from agents on http://cleanupatf.org/forums/, I'd say the unrest is already in the house.
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearm Safety and Pistol Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 09:51 AM   #2556
Luger_carbine
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 18, 2012
Posts: 366
I think the unrest was inevitable.

You had upper levels of BATFE collaborating with appointees to subvert the mission of BATFE and turn the bureau into a component of a propaganda machine - manufacturing events that the administration could then spin to support their agenda.

Subverting the mission of BATFE made for tension.

Having tactics and operations manipulated by non-BATFE politicos like Burke and friends made for tension.
Luger_carbine is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 11:14 AM   #2557
alan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 7, 1999
Posts: 3,722
The following might be somewhat "off-point", but it still bears on the thrust of this discussion.

Interested readers might view the following . articles@mises.org in particular the 30 August 2012 article. Takes a few miniutes to read, but time well spent, I think. Judge for yourselves.
alan is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 12:11 PM   #2558
maestro pistolero
Senior Member
 
Join Date: August 16, 2007
Posts: 2,047
If the local office id thrown under the proverbial bus for carrying out an operation that originated up the line, then we might expect the information flow from those local agents top significantly increase.
maestro pistolero is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 12:53 PM   #2559
CowTowner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 17, 2007
Location: Cowtown of course!
Posts: 1,104
Here's a working link to the article alan mentioned from the Ludwig von Mises Institute. The author is George Reisman

http://mises.org/daily/6172/Gun-Cont...vernments-Guns
__________________
NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, Home Firearm Safety and Pistol Instructor
"There are three classes of people: those who see, those who see when they are shown, those who do not see."
Leonardo da Vinci
CowTowner is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 04:02 PM   #2560
thallub
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 20, 2007
Location: South Western OK
Posts: 2,020
Quote:
If the local office id thrown under the proverbial bus for carrying out an operation that originated up the line, then we might expect the information flow from those local agents top significantly increase.
Fast and Furious originated with the Phoenix office of the BATFE: The Phoenix office of the BATFE sold the plan to the US prosecutor for AZ and, presumably, up the line to their superiors.

See Memorandum, US Congressman Issa, dated 3 May, 2012:

Quote:
The ATF Phoenix Field Division began Operation Fast and Furious in the fall of 2009 after suspicious weapons purchases led agents to the discovery of an apparent Phoenix-based arms trafficking syndicate. Having been encouraged to devise grander strategies to stop the transfers of weapons to Mexican drug cartels, the Phoenix based agents devised a strategy that went beyond simple arrests or weapons confiscations. They would allow the U.S.-based associates of a Mexican drug cartel to continue acquiring firearms uninterrupted. In doing so, they hoped the weapons, after they were recovered at crime scenes in Mexico, could be traced and linked to cartel operatives including possible high-level financiers, suppliers, and possibly even king-pins.
thallub is offline  
Old August 31, 2012, 10:17 PM   #2561
alan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 7, 1999
Posts: 3,722
CowTowner :

Thanks. The link you put up is more direct than the approach I came upon. go to mieses.org, a list of areticles is found there, scroll down through it, not very far, and there find the article I referenced. The link is a lot quicker.
alan is offline  
Old September 1, 2012, 09:15 PM   #2562
Armorer-at-Law
Senior Member
 
Join Date: October 29, 2002
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 325
Quote:
They would allow the U.S.-based associates of a Mexican drug cartel to continue acquiring firearms uninterrupted. In doing so, they hoped the weapons, after they were recovered at crime scenes in Mexico, could be traced and linked to cartel operatives including possible high-level financiers, suppliers, and possibly even king-pins.
My question is, "To what end?" What good does it do to link a weapon, known to have been bought in the US and recovered at a crime scene in Mexico, with a king-pin? That doesn't make the king pin any more convictable. It doesn't make the straw purchacer, who you had and then let go in the US, and more convictable. It doesn't help Identify the king-pin.

Unfortuantely, the only conceivable utility for the gun walking plan, with no attempt to follow the weapons -- just wait for them to turn up at a crime sceme and a trace request to come in from MX -- is for political anecdotal support for ill-conceived gun control laws. The local agents don't benefit from that -- unless they get some personal gratification from narrowing the rights of Americans. The only political appeal for such a plan is higher up the ladder. There HAS to be some paper trail evidencing that. Hmmm . . . Wonder why exec privilege has been asserted for the documents subpoenaed?
__________________
Send lawyers, guns, and money...

Armorer-at-Law.com

Last edited by Armorer-at-Law; September 1, 2012 at 09:21 PM.
Armorer-at-Law is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 12:24 AM   #2563
Luger_carbine
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 18, 2012
Posts: 366
^ +1

Very few people in the media ever make a critical examination of the the F&F plan.

Even if the agents had never lost track of the weapons, does anyone believe those weapons were going to end up on the mantle over the fireplace of a Mexican drug lord's mansion or something?

Did they think the head of an entire syndicate was going to take one of these straw-purchase weapons and start carrying it themselves?

Those weapons only ever would have circulated among the bottom few tiers of the organization between the people who use them - the workers, the people who transport and guard shipments, assassins, enforcers and the soldiers of the organization.

The operation NEVER made sense for the stated goal. Instead of scrutinizing the stated objective, the reporters just chalk it up to a few bad choices, a few bad decisions. " Mistakes were made", "the strategy was flawed."

Only the NRA keeps beating the drum, that it wasn't a flawed strategy - the real objective of F&F was different from the stated objective, and the tactics made sense in light of the real objective - building a case for lax U.S. gun laws being responsible for the high level of violence in Mexico.
Luger_carbine is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 04:42 AM   #2564
publius42
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 9, 2002
Posts: 1,882
Quote:
Even if the agents had never lost track of the weapons,
Ack! Not here too!

I understand that the propaganda line being put forth by almost all media sources is that some agents lost track of some guns, and that is the whole problem with Fast and Furious. If you misidentify the problem, getting to the wrong solution becomes easier.

The agents did not "lose track" of some guns. They deliberately allowed them to get away on orders from their superiors and despite their better judgment. Saying they "lost track" of the guns implies it was a mistake and that agent competence might be the problem.

It was no mistake, the agents were competent. They did not lose track of any guns. They walked them. BIG difference, even if the media is trying to erase it.
publius42 is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 07:35 AM   #2565
thallub
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 20, 2007
Location: South Western OK
Posts: 2,020
Quote:
I understand that the propaganda line being put forth by almost all media sources is that some agents lost track of some guns, and that is the whole problem with Fast and Furious. If you misidentify the problem, getting to the wrong solution becomes easier.
Its fashionable to complain about the news media. i don't see any so called "propaganda". CBS has been on the case since early on:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/...in;contentBody

Quote:
WASHINGTON - Keeping American weapons from getting into the hands of Mexican gangs is the goal of a program called "Project Gunrunner." But critics say it's doing exactly the opposite. CBS News investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports on what she found.

December 14, 2010. The place: a dangerous smuggling route in Arizona not far from the border. A special tactical border squad was on patrol when gunfire broke out and agent Brian Terry was killed.

Kent, Brian's brother, said "he was my only brother. That was the only brother I had. I'm lost".

The assault rifles found at the murder were traced back to a U.S. gun shop. Where they came from and how they got there is a scandal so large, some insiders say it surpasses the shoot-out at Ruby Ridge and the deadly siege at Waco.


Not all the F&F guns went to Mexico. Never saw this one reported by any other news organization:

http://www.abc15.com/dpp/news/local_...-valley-crimes

Posted: 06/30/2011
• By: Lori Jane Gliha


Quote:
PHOENIX - Weapons linked to a questionable government strategy are turning up in crimes in Valley neighborhoods.

For months the ABC15 Investigators have been searching through police reports and official government documents. We’ve discovered assault weapons linked to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ controversial "Fast and Furious" case strategy have turned up at crime scenes in Glendale and Phoenix communities.

CBS won the Edward R. Murrow award for investigative journalism:

http://www.nraila.org/news-issues/in...d-furious.aspx

Quote:
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa today issued the following statement on CBS winning the Radio Television Digital News Association's Edward R. Murrow Award for Investigative Reporting on Operation Fast and Furious:

"First on the story, CBS and investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson tenaciously fought to bring Americans answers on Operation Fast and Furious," Issa said. "In looking into the heartbreaking death of Agent Brian Terry, they've remained committed to following the facts. It's encouraging to see CBS awarded for their important investigative reporting."
thallub is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 10:11 AM   #2566
publius42
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 9, 2002
Posts: 1,882
Thallub, Sharyl Attkisson is a notable exception to what I'm talking about, and the ABC report you linked is another. It says:

Quote:
Phoenix ATF agents recently testified during a Congressional hearing that they knowingly allowed weapons to slip into the hands of straw buyers who would then distribute the weapons to known criminals.
That's exactly right. Contrast with NPR:

Quote:
Probably the biggest item on the Horowitz agenda is a long-awaited report on Fast and Furious. That's the flawed gun sting in Arizona, where ATF agents lost track of 2,000 guns. Some later turned up at crime scenes, including the killing of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.
or the LA Times:

Quote:
Three White House national security officials were given some details about the operation, dubbed Fast and Furious. The operation allowed firearms to be illegally purchased, with the goal of tracking them to Mexican drug cartels. But the effort went out of control after agents lost track of many of the weapons.
My point is that saying the agents lost track of some guns suggests a different problem, and different solutions, than saying "that they knowingly allowed weapons to slip into the hands of straw buyers who would then distribute the weapons to known criminals."
publius42 is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 10:20 AM   #2567
publius42
Senior Member
 
Join Date: February 9, 2002
Posts: 1,882
The NY Times provides another example:

Quote:
For two years now, Representative Darrell Issa of California, the hard-charging chairman of the House Oversight Committee, and two deputies, Representatives Jason Chaffetz of Utah and Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, have pursued the details of a 2009 gunrunning investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that went awry.

Seeking to build a bigger case against high-ranking gunrunners, agents did not move quickly against weapons obtained by low-level smugglers in the gunrunning operation. The agents 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 Border Patrol agent, Brian Terry, was killed.
The 2009 operation was ongoing in December of 2010 right up until Brian Terry was killed.

Saying that "agents did not move quickly" against straw buyers and that they lost track of the guns is certainly part of the truth, in addition to being an excellent example of why courts ask people to swear to tell the whole truth.

On orders from superiors, the agents did not act quickly against those buyers, and when the agents were ordered to lose track of the shipments in various ways, they did as ordered. When you put it that way, it kind of suggests a different problem than the one the NY Times and the rest are suggesting.
publius42 is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 10:22 AM   #2568
MLeake
Senior Member
 
Join Date: November 15, 2007
Location: Outside KC, MO
Posts: 10,128
Thallub, you should also check out the coverage on MSNBC, CNN, and Huffington, for TV and web coverage bias.

NYT, WaPo, Boston Globe, AJC, even Kansas City Star, too, for print and web.

Most of the major media seem to deliberately miss the point on F&F.

Without going into my own politics, I try to follow news across a fairly broad spectrum. Patterns in coverage definitely begin to show.

Luger, while praising the NRA is fine, don't forget David Codrea or Sharyl Atkisson.
MLeake is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 01:51 PM   #2569
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 5,960
Quote:
Originally Posted by Publius42
On orders from superiors, the agents did not act quickly against those buyers, and when the agents were ordered to lose track of the shipments in various ways, they did as ordered. When you put it that way, it kind of suggests a different problem than the one the NY Times and the rest are suggesting.
They didn't have to be ordered to lose track of the guns. They had no way to track them.

One of the earlier gun-running operations, IIRC, did have tracking devices attached to or embedded in the guns, and my recollection is that the Mexicans found them and disabled them, rendering the operation a failure. The F&F guns did NOT have any tracking devices. The operation was not briefed even to BATFE agents in Mexico, or to any Mexican authorities. Which means that, even if the U.S. agents had managed to keep eyeballs directly on all 2000 guns right to the border ... once they were across the border they were gone. No tracking devices, nobody in law enforcement even knew they existed, let alone that they were coming into Mexico.

There was no need to "order" anyone to lose track of them. The operation was designed to lose track of them. The only "tracking" contemplated was to "trace" them back to U.S. gun shops after they were used in crimes in Mexico and recovered. Any innocent (or guilty) Mexicans killed by the guns were just collateral damage.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 02:04 PM   #2570
armoredman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 22, 2007
Location: Arizona
Posts: 3,659
Aguila, I watched the original Committee hearings - the agents in question DID testify that they had gun runners in sight about to transfer, asked for permission to arrest/interdict, and were ordered from above to allow the firearms to leave surveillance unhindered. They did testify they were ordered to let firearms "walk" out of their sight into Mexico, unlike the first operation, Wide Receiver, which the guns were watched all the way to the border and the Mexican authorities were advised...and did nothing, which was one major reason why Wide Receiver was terminated. One ATFE agent during the first hearing did testify he tried to build a tracking device, but it failed due to off the shelf components, limited range and limited battery life.
The agents on the ground testified they were repeatedly ordered to suspend surveillance and to allow known criminals to walk the firearms across the border, sometimes over strenuous objections by the agents testifying.
Yes, I remember seeing the report on F&F firearms found in Phoenix and Glendale, as well as other Arizona jurisdictions. Some of them are smuggled in, others probably walk in with the cartel enforcers along that lovely fed.gov superhighway gifted to them up through the state, the one marked "US Citizens stay out". That's not too many miles from my home.
__________________
http://czfirearms.us/ same original CZForum, new location.
armoredman is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 08:27 PM   #2571
Aguila Blanca
Senior Member
 
Join Date: September 25, 2008
Location: CONUS
Posts: 5,960
Quote:
Originally Posted by armoredman
... the agents in question DID testify that they had gun runners in sight about to transfer, asked for permission to arrest/interdict, and were ordered from above to allow the firearms to leave surveillance unhindered. They did testify they were ordered to let firearms "walk" out of their sight into Mexico, unlike the first operation, Wide Receiver, which the guns were watched all the way to the border and the Mexican authorities were advised...and did nothing, ...
Yes, I understand that. But that was on the U.S. side of the border. As I wrote, with NOBODY in Mexico even aware of the operation, the U.S.-based agents could have had eyes-on contact with the guns all the way to the border and they would have gone walk-about as soon as they entered Mexico anyway, because the operation simply didn't include any provisions for keeping track of the guns in Mexico.
Aguila Blanca is offline  
Old September 2, 2012, 10:14 PM   #2572
alan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 7, 1999
Posts: 3,722
Some above appearing posts make mention of "media coverage" or the lack thereof re the details of Operation Fast & Furious in particular, and might I add, of "gun control" in general.

Given the media in general are great supporters of the Tales of the Vienna Woods, also known as Gun Control, one would hardly be surprised, though the facts of the matter are worth mentioning.
alan is offline  
Old September 3, 2012, 08:47 AM   #2573
ltc444
Senior Member
 
Join Date: March 3, 2011
Location: Vernon AZ
Posts: 1,195
There have been many hours or testimony and documents placed before the Committee. Some of the most telling have been overlooked by the media and I think the lawmakers themselves.

The Commanding General for Southern Command testified that the Arsenals of Central America were the major source of weapons for the Cartels.
ltc444 is offline  
Old September 3, 2012, 01:05 PM   #2574
BGutzman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: December 4, 2009
Location: Frozen Tundra
Posts: 2,414
What will be interesting to see is what happens if the election goes against the current administration. The reason I say that is then it would really limit the time the president has to give pardons and it would be interesting to see if he used this power to make this issue go away. For myself if a pardon is issued on this I think it will have ramifications that won’t easily go away... Yet if they do loose then they have to already be aware they could very well end up being prosecuted at some point over this issue... Murder is still murder...
__________________
Molon Labe
BGutzman is offline  
Old September 3, 2012, 11:12 PM   #2575
Luger_carbine
Senior Member
 
Join Date: June 18, 2012
Posts: 366
Quote:
The Commanding General for Southern Command testified that the Arsenals of Central America were the major source of weapons for the Cartels.
^ This links to the State Department again.

If the United States was arming some government and the weapons "just happened" to find their way into the hands of right-wing death squads... the media would be running stories on the bloodshed (and blaming America) nightly. There would be protests calling for the U.S. to cut off foreign aid to the country, cease military coperation and cease military aid, freeze assets, etc, etc...

The State Department was arming narco terrorists in Mexico, and hundreds and hundreds of people were getting killed with weapons that were procured through the Direct Commercial Sales program, and the media hardly said a word. Sharyl Attkisson was the notable exception.

I think the architects of the whole thing counted on things being too chaotic for people to ever be able to track down which weapons were from the Mexican armories and which were from U.S. gunstores.

And with the media coverage on border issues being as bad as it was, their strategy probably would have worked, except for 2 things, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed and some BATFE blew the whistle.

The death of Brian Terry was a game changer, but the State Department's role in this has never been brought to light by the media
Luger_carbine is offline  
Reply

Tags
atf , fast and furious

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:28 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
This site and contents, including all posts, Copyright © 1998-2013 S.W.A.T. Magazine
Copyright Complaints: Please direct DMCA Takedown Notices to the registered agent: thefiringline.com
Contact Us
Page generated in 0.47043 seconds with 8 queries