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Old July 8, 2011, 08:42 AM   #526
publius42
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When is someone going to ask Hillary what she thinks of all this mucking around in foreign affairs?

Update on the ATF gunwalking to Honduras out of Tampa

Quote:
At one point the case was ready to be wrapped up with arrests and remain relatively efficient but O'Brien and McCampbell decided on their own to keep it going to "get more" against the advise of thier field employees and the walked guns numbers got out of control.

OB is terrified that her intentional concealing of her walked guns is going to do her in since she disregarded orders to report to DOJ and Congress.

Continue reading on Examiner.com Breaking News: Tampa SAC 'in full meltdown...shredders are buzzing' - National gun rights | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/gun-rights-i...#ixzz1RWN4ZVBf
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Old July 8, 2011, 08:57 AM   #527
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There is so much happening with Gunwalker now that it is tough to keep track of it all - thanks to everyone who helps keep me informed via this thread. In the "Who knew what and when?" category, it seems that Issa and Grassley have released this email from October 2009 discussing the border strategy.

From the memo, it isn't clear exactly what was covered; but Gunrunner is specifically mentioned as is the Arizona OCDETF strike force coordinated by the AUSA. It also makes clear that similar operations are taking place in other U.S. cities - which of course makes me wonder if Ken Melson and others at the top of the food chain were OK with weapons walking in Phoenix; what was going in Houston, San Diego, etc.?

The email also lists the following people as being involved:

SAIC Phoenix William Newell (the original author)
David W. Ogden (Office of the Deputt Attorney General)
Lanny Breuer (DOJ CRM)
Kenneth Melson (ATF)
William J. Hoover and Michele Leonhart (DEA)
Robert S. Mueller, III (Director of FBI)
Dennis Burke (U.S. Attorney - AZ)
Every U.S. Attorney in a district bordering Mexico.
Chair of the Attorney General's Advisory Committee
Director Executive Office US Attorneys
Director OCDETF
Director U.S. Marshal Service
Director of Bureau of Federal Prisons

The email includes the redacted cartel strategy memo outlining what was being discussed. Based on that it appears that the 2006 Project Gunwalker was on the list for discussing how this could be expanded to help target Mexican cartels as a topic of discussion. While I wouldn't say this implicates any of the people involved in knowing about the actual guns being walked (although several of the people on the list clearly did know this from other documents), it does add further evidence that AG Holder's claims of ignorance strain credulity. How is it that the Chair of your Advisory Committee is briefed on something at a hearing that involves almost all the major executives of your Department; but you've never heard of it until Judiciary Committee hearings on it began?

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; July 8, 2011 at 09:46 AM.
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Old July 8, 2011, 10:00 AM   #528
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I just love how "main stream" is silent on this right now. This should be splashed all over the front page of every news paper, and TV all day long.
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Old July 8, 2011, 11:43 AM   #529
Bartholomew Roberts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by publius42
I thought the biggest news of the day was that the Washington Post has finally printed what the government did, or at least a significant part of it.
Talk about alternate universe reporting... here are the main points I learned from the Washington Post coverage:

1. Melson testified to Congress with his own personal lawyer rather than ATF and DOJ lawyers and admitted his agency "made mistakes."

2. Anonymous sources (the same ones that claimed Issa was briefed on Fast and Furious?) claim that Melson testified that Holder had no knowledge of Fast and Furious and that it would be unusual for any DoJ officials in Washington to know the details.

3. The same anonymous sources say U.S. Attoney's Office in Phoenix was the one overseeing the program. (Attention Dennis Burke! DOJ Bus Service is now ready to board you. Please lie down in front of the vehicle and standby for further instruction. Whatever you do, don't show up before the Judiciary Committee with your own counsel).

4. Assistant AG Ronald Weich stated that the two Republicans unfairly criticized DOJ for not cooperating when they have released over 6,000 documents (no comment on the fact that some of those "released" documents were black pages from being entirely redacted of course)

5. The DOJ Inspector General is on the case and the important thing is that the investigation be allowed to run its course before we jump to any conclusions - even Melson's attorney agrees!.

6. Melson said DOJ's handling of the controversy has been "problematic."

In short, the WaPo got right to the meat of the story; which is that the heroic Justice Department is doing its best to comply with the ridiculous demands of Congressional oversight while simultaneously investigating the occasional mistakes of its lower-level, not-in-Washington, really-we-hardly-even-know-that-guy, minions.

How sad is it that ABC News Reporter and former Handgun Control, Inc. employee, Jake Tapper has been pushing the White House harder on this than the paper behind Watergate? I've got to give Mr. Tapper credit, he is one of the few supporters of gun control who isn't willing to turn a blind eye to this scandal because it was perpetrated by supposed allies.

Last edited by Bartholomew Roberts; July 8, 2011 at 11:49 AM.
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Old July 8, 2011, 12:03 PM   #530
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The WaPo managed to avoid mentioning Weich's earlier comments on this scandal. You know, when he said the gunwalking never happened.

The Washington Post is usually pretty sharp when a political opponent is caught in a lie, but no mention of the serious blemish on Weich's credibility in this matter.

It must be pretty humiliating for the paper that employed Woodward and Bernstein to have to stand by in "Sargeant Shulz" mode from Hogan's Heroes as those bloggers from the Examiner take up the reins.
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Old July 8, 2011, 02:11 PM   #531
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Using Recovery Act stimulus funding, there's gotta be at least one or two shovel ready jobs jokes in here somewhere.
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Old July 8, 2011, 04:40 PM   #532
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Quote:
[It must be pretty humiliating for the paper that employed Woodward and Bernstein to have to stand by in "Sargeant Shulz" mode from Hogan's Heroes as those bloggers from the Examiner take up the reins.
I don't think so. By way of example, take a look at the op-ed from Yale anthropology professor McGovern about the lady who brought down the Frenchie from IMF in NYC.

Her engagement in tax fraud, lying to police, prostitution and probable drug dealing should be overlooked, he thinks, because she is from Guinea and doesn't know any better...

In the "context" of Guinea, this stuff happens all the time so really she be forgiven these crimes and released without penalty. The message is that any act is permissable as long as the "context" is correct.

The WaPo, NYT and similar news organizations have a "context" they like with Obama, and about any act, regardless of legality or morality, is acceptable. Fascist and communist tyrannies share this mode of thought in justifying repression of those out of favor.

The Nurmeberg Principle provides no excuse for some types of criminality based on context or whose orders were being followed. Such high-mindedness is out of favor with the modern savants in government, some of the media and academia.

http://www.city-journal.org/2011/eon0707hm.html
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Old July 8, 2011, 09:02 PM   #533
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Obama and Holder didn't know about the operation? But it was in the stimulus package?

I guess we had to pass it so they could find out what was in it.
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Old July 8, 2011, 11:48 PM   #534
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More bovine feces from the uber-liberal MSNBC...I wonder if they could be more wrong in their reporting...Seems like someone is jealous of WaPo's position as the ask-no-questions-before-we-go-to-print propaganda outlet...

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/43688417...ience_monitor/

Now, they are quoting cartel leaders as fact...Sickening!
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Old July 9, 2011, 12:08 AM   #535
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Project Gunrunner has been in operation since 2006. It is well known; but the Gunrunner name just refers to a broad overall program to interdict gun trafficking to Mexico. Fast and Furious aka Gunwalker is part of the Gunrunner program; but they are not the same thing. Some of the Gunrunner projects may have been perfectly legit, though it appears the Phoenix and Tampa projects were not.

So while Holder probably knows about Gunrunner, it doesn't prove he knows about the details of Fast and Furious or the latest story about the Tampa office walking and losing guns to Central America.
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Old July 9, 2011, 04:30 AM   #536
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Agreed. It doesn't prove he knew of Fast and Furious, but it does beg the question of incompetence. How does the chief attorney for the U.S. not know the operational details of an operation given 10 million dollars specifically by his boss's legislation? I'd sure want to know if I was going to be held accountable for it.

Last edited by Micahweeks; July 9, 2011 at 05:13 AM.
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Old July 9, 2011, 04:42 AM   #537
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Holder swore an oath of office to protect America, internal/external
He has failed both intentionaly,,,?
Project Gunrunner has been in operation since 2006. It is well known; but the Gunrunner name just refers to a broad overall program to interdict gun trafficking to Mexico. Fast and Furious aka Gunwalker is part of the Gunrunner program; but they are not the same thing. Some of the Gunrunner projects may have been perfectly legit, though it appears the Phoenix and Tampa projects were not.

So while Holder probably knows about Gunrunner, it doesn't prove he knows about the details of Fast and Furious or the latest story about the Tampa office walking and losing guns to Central America.

quew lights

Last edited by kenno; July 9, 2011 at 04:48 AM.
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Old July 9, 2011, 02:37 PM   #538
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Read the entire thread, and have 30+ pages booked', looks like a couple more days of reading/viewing.
This kind of thing could've been stopped years ago but since then we've thrown the Constitution (most-of-it) in the trash. Sad.
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Old July 9, 2011, 03:07 PM   #539
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www.politico.com has a column indicating that the ATF might be doomed.
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Old July 9, 2011, 03:38 PM   #540
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Too bad the laws they "enforce" will not be doomed as well.
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Old July 9, 2011, 04:04 PM   #541
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Great article Glenn:

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0711/58532.html


“Even the name of the organization, it’s from the black-and-white movie era,” said Jim Kessler of Third Way, a centrist Democratic group. “I don’t think it should exist. The investigations should be subsumed within the FBI, and the licensing could be done by Treasury, which is a tax-collecting agency.”
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Old July 9, 2011, 04:44 PM   #542
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Interesting article, indeed.

Quote:
“I don’t see them merging with another agency,” said Ronnie Carter, another former ATF official. “Whatever agency you merge them with is going to have the same problems. … A lot of it is weakness in the law. ATF can do the job. They just have to be allowed to do it.”
Translation: We don't like the existing laws, so we make them up as we go along.
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Old July 9, 2011, 07:59 PM   #543
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Despite the talk of folding ATF into the FBI, gun control advocates also said they suspect that the NRA and pro-gun lawmakers actually prefer a hobbled ATF to the possibility of a forceful director or vigorous enforcement of gun laws by the FBI.
At least the FBI has some idea of restraint and discipline.
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Old July 9, 2011, 10:32 PM   #544
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Quote:
Translation: We don't like the existing laws, so we make them up as we go along.
Ya pretty much.

I wouldn't expect Ronnie Carter - former ATF to be in touch with reality, and I wouldn't expect anything he says to be accurate.

The problem is not some supposed weakness in the law - what a meaningless nonsensical statement.

The problem with the BATFE is that it is trying to justify it's own existence by fabricating a threat where no threat exists. It is a very expensive solution to a non-existent problem.

It is led by a group of people who are willing to whore the agency out for political purposes.

I think the top tiers of people who lead the FBI are much more tuned into the core mission of the FBI and they are experienced enough and smart enough to stick to enforcing the law, guarding the reputation of the bureau and not allowing it to be used as a tool in ideological debates between parties. If a president – any president went to the FBI and said – I want you to do this investigation that really paints abortion clinic doctors in a bad light so we can hopefully get some laws changed in this country – he would get pushback, if a president went to the FBI and said – I want you to do this investigation that really paints abortion clinic protesters in a bad light so we can change some laws in this country – likewise he would get pushback. Even if they have an idiotic director, the rest of the bureau is focused on the FBIs mission and value its reputation.

The BATFE isn’t like that. The top levels of BATFE whored the agency out in a myopic effort to curry favor with the administration and anti-gun politicians.

I would argue that we can’t afford an agency – any agency to lack integrity to this degree.

I doubt the NRA is secretly in favor of keeping the BATFE around because it serves their purposes to have some sort of paper tiger of an agency in charge of federal firarms regulations.

The NRA has always supported the military and law enforcement in this country, and is completely and strongly in favor of keeping firearms out of the hands of criminals. If the BATFE had the same view they would receive the full support of the NRA.
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Old July 9, 2011, 10:42 PM   #545
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Quote:
If the BATFE had the same view they would receive the full support of the NRA.
If the BATFE had that view they would have been shut down long ago, as a needless agency that could be redacted, to give the appearance of an administration "for the people" when in effect it would have outlived it's usefullness to said administration's agenda...
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Old July 9, 2011, 11:21 PM   #546
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At least the FBI has some idea of restraint and discipline.
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Old July 9, 2011, 11:31 PM   #547
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Ruby Ridge involved ATF after the Marshals concluded their investigation, and before the FBI came in. ATF did not notify FBI that they had been trying to recruit Randy Weaver as a CI.

Waco was initiated by ATF.

So what was your point, aaalaska?
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Old July 10, 2011, 05:50 AM   #548
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The "weak" straw buyer laws say that a straw buyer can go to prison for ten years and be fined $250,000. That's more than a wrist slap!

The complaints that straw buyers get a wrist slap are not due to weakness in the law, but due to the nature of our justice system. Prosecutors want to threaten straw buyers with a serious prison term and a serious fine? OK, they can already do that, in my opinion.

The problem is, they have to threaten the straw buyer with what a big, bad JURY might do to them. Keeping in mind that a straw buyer must be someone with little, if any, criminal record, what are the odds of that happening? No jury is going to put a first offender away for ten years and fine them a quarter million dollars. If we made the maximum penalty 50 years and ten million, no jury would do that to a first offender either.

A jury is just never going to be as threatening as the criminals that a straw buyer is being asked to finger.
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Old July 10, 2011, 09:03 AM   #549
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If taxes were increased just a little bit more on tobacco growers the government could incent people to produce and smuggle cigarettes illegally, (it's happening now to a small degree anyway, so we're very close to that price point as it is).

Once we as a society decide to recreate the prohibition experiment (this time with tobacco), the Bureau of alcohol, TOBACCO, firearms and explosives can prove their worth and keep themselves busy fighting the evil tobacco smugglers threatening our society. I can hear it now “The tobacco cartels are trying to turn our teens into nicotine addicts and are bringing about the collapse of our health care system as hospitals strain under the burden of providing lung cancer patients with expensive treatments.”

It may sound far fetched but it’s not that far off from what BATFE has tried to do with gun ownership. They want more firearms crimes to chase down so they manipulate public perception in an attempt to pass laws that criminalize gun ownership, and thus increase the perceived need for a BATFE.
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Old July 10, 2011, 10:26 AM   #550
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Glenn said:
www.politico.com has a column indicating that the ATF might be doomed.

I am all for ending the reign of the ATF. They are a pack of thugs with badges. However, as Mike Vanderboegh (one of the fellows who broke this story) has pointed out, ending the ATF will be a bone the Obama administration will want to toss to the rabid gun nuts. It won't stop the enforcement of more than 20,000 gun laws that exist. It could give greater power and less accountability to another alphabet soup agency. It is a "cure" that may turn out to be ever worse than the disease.

...and Tom Servo, if you consider the siege and fire on day 53 at The Branch Davidian to be a demonstration of "FBI restraint", I shudder to think what your idea of lack of restraint would be.

I believe a special prosecutor needs to be assigned to this matter. A full investigation followed by criminal prosecutions of all parties involved including, ATF, DoJ (Holder and company), State (St. Hillary), DEA, IRS, HSA (Janet Napolitano). Jail time for guilty parties and revocation of pensions would really get some attention. Maybe even impeachment proceedings against the Obama-messiah.
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