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Old October 25, 2001, 09:44 PM   #1
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Keeping Guns Away From Terrorists

Keeping Guns Away From Terrorists

By Eric Holder Jr.

Thursday, October 25, 2001; Page A31
In the wake of the horrific terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, the nation is eager for ways to increase security at home -- and understandably so. These unspeakable crimes have taken thousands of innocent lives, devastated countless families and made us feel a new and terrible kind of vulnerability. Throughout the country, people are having the same conversations: How could this happen? How do we cope with it? And what can we do, as a nation and as individuals, to safeguard against further acts of terrorism?
As the nation struggles to come to terms with these questions, we all agree on one thing: Our nation's security requires a multifaceted approach to preventing terrorism. This means increased surveillance of suspected terrorists, heightened security at public buildings, airports and especially our other means of transportation, and more resources for law enforcement.
Some citizens believe that they need to purchase firearms for self-protection. If the recent increase in firearms sales is attributable to people who may lawfully purchase firearms, that is the decision of the individual and not a matter that should be the subject of government oversight. If, on the other hand, any firearm purchased in this country falls into the hands of a terrorist because no background check was done, that is another national tragedy waiting to happen. Fortunately for our nation, there is an easy and safe solution.
One measure that is an essential part of any plan is the need to tighten our nation's gun laws, which allow the easy and legal sale of firearms to terrorists and criminals. While we are appropriately discussing requiring criminal background checks on airline pilots, baggage handlers and airport security personnel, federal law does not require background checks on all firearms sales. In the interest of national security, this should be changed immediately.
Under the Brady Law, gun buyers must undergo criminal background checks only when they buy firearms from licensed dealers. And that law has made our communities safer, stopping nearly 700,000 criminals and other prohibited people from purchasing firearms in the seven years it has been in effect. This requirement has resulted in only a minor inconvenience to law-abiding citizens, which has been far outweighed by the strong benefit to society of keeping firearms out of the hands of criminals and terrorists.
Unfortunately, unlicensed sellers are permitted by law to sell firearms with no background check whatever. Millions of firearms change hands every year through this back-door yet perfectly legal method, giving criminals and terrorists remarkably easy and undetectable access to weapons. This legal loophole must be closed immediately. We can no longer allow the purchase of firearms through the Internet or a newspaper ad, at a gun show or a flea market, or in any other type of sale from an unlicensed seller, without any background check or other record of purchase. The stakes are too high.
While the reasons should be self-evident, there are numerous and chilling examples of the need to extend the background check to every firearm sale. Just last year, for example, a previously convicted felon and terrorist, Ali Boumelhem, went to a Michigan gun show, where he was legally exempt from a background check, and purchased assault weapons, shotguns, ammunition and flash suppressors that he intended to ship to the terrorist group Hezbollah. Fortunately, Boumelhem was already under FBI surveillance for suspected terrorism and was captured before he was able to ship the weapons to Hezbollah.
In Florida, four people were convicted last year of smuggling guns and other weapons from the state for use by the Provisional Irish Republican Army. One of the convicted IRA terrorists, Conor Claxton, testified that he was shocked by the variety of weapons available in Florida at gun shows and through newspaper ads. "We have nothing like this at home," he said.
Indeed, if Osama bin Laden, who is under indictment in this country for the bombing of our embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, were to go to a willing or unwary unlicensed gun dealer at a gun show, no mechanism is in place to prevent him from obtaining a weapon of his choice. Unfortunately, the gaping holes in our current law have likely allowed thousands of undetected firearm purchases by criminals and terrorists. This kind of terrorist loophole in the laws of the United States is simply unacceptable and must be closed.
In addition to background checks on all gun sales, records used to check the eligibility of an individual to purchase a firearm should include whether the potential buyer is on an FBI or other law enforcement watch list of suspected terrorists.
To further strengthen the ability of law enforcement officials to track those suspected of terrorism or other criminal acts in this country, Congress should also pass legislation that would give the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms a record of every firearm sale. Current law makes it difficult for law enforcement officials to check whether suspected criminals or terrorists have bought a gun. As we have seen in the past few weeks, law enforcement officials have made incredible progress in the criminal investigation of the terrorist attacks by examining phone records, banking records, credit card records, travel records, immigration records and the like. The ability to review gun records is crucial to law enforcement's efforts to protect our communities from violence and terrorism.
Congress must take immediate action to close these two gaping loopholes in the law. Our national security requires it. And the public should demand it.
The writer is a partner at the law firm Covington and Burling; he was previously deputy attorney general and U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia in the Clinton administration.
© 2001 The Washington Post Company
who is Eric Holder?
"...the Second Amendment is not an individual right." -- ABC, This Week With Sam & Cokie (circa May 1999).
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Old October 25, 2001, 09:55 PM   #2
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Haven't these idiots noticed....the terrorists don't need guns.

And our most dangerous criminals are elected politicians, who would steal our very freedoms while dining at the trough of taxpayer assetts.
Sam I am, grn egs n packin

Nikita Khrushchev predicted confidently in a speech in Bucharest, Rumania on June 19, 1962 that: " The United States will eventually fly the Communist Red Flag...the American people will hoist it themselves."
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Old October 25, 2001, 10:11 PM   #3
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If terrorists need guns(which they seem to be getting around quite nicely) they will get them no matter what we do here.

Many of them have already gotten themselves here without benifit of any government OK, so something as small as a gun should be no problem.

What we need is for our own government to get out of the way and let us fully enjoy the right to keep and bear arms.
I think you will find that people don't generally do anything dangerous or rude to others where everyone in sight is armed.
Just wouldn't seem to be much future in it!
I reserve the right to keep AND arm bears.

Support those who support us.
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Old October 25, 2001, 10:19 PM   #4
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put one gun on my right hip, put one in a shoulder holster and one in my boot! That should keep them away from mine
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Old October 25, 2001, 10:21 PM   #5
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It seems the former Clinton apparatchiks are crawling out from under rocks, unfurling their tattered flags, and trying to advance their tired causes using disingenuous appeals to the WTC massacre to generate sympathy.

For shame.
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Old October 25, 2001, 10:47 PM   #6
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How could this happen?

I've seen this question asked for a LONG time. Apparently the people asking the question aren't bothering to look for an answer.
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Old October 25, 2001, 11:05 PM   #7
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I am Habib. That is German name. Here is national ID card. I want to buy .50 caliber machineguns and Stinger missiles. You can sell them to me, OK? My brother told me I can buy all this and F16 fighter jets here at gun show. My brother is Tom Brokaw. He knows all this and more. I pay cash.

"The writer is a partner at the law firm Covington and Burling; he was previously deputy attorney general and U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia in the Clinton administration."

The writer is brother, too. If it becomes cold, writer will become wife. Clinton will become wife. Is better than for him than Hillary as wife. Camels do not bite as hard as Hillary.
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Old October 26, 2001, 02:52 AM   #8
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THIS happened because Komrades BJ Bill, Hitlary Klinton and Komrade Polytikal Officer Holder spent the bulk of their miscreant lives actively destroying America, and all that makes Her great!

Holder spent his days subverting the most basic human right. The right to have the means to defend one's self. All the while mass murderers with expired visas were taking classes on how to fly jumbo jets "level and straight".

Those who use arms well cultivate the Way and keep the rules.Thus they can govern in such a way as to prevail over the corrupt- Sun Tzu, The Art of War
"This started out as a documentary on gun violence in America, but the largest mass murder in our history was just committed -- without the use of a single gun! Not a single bullet fired! No bomb was set off, no missile was fired, no weapon (i.e., a device that was solely and specifically manufactured to kill humans) was used. A boxcutter! -- I can't stop thinking about this. A thousand gun control laws would not have prevented this massacre. What am I doing?"

Michael Moore
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Old October 26, 2001, 04:58 AM   #9
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The F.B.I. has detained about 900 since 9/11.

I haven`t heard one report of "arsenals". Now there could be a lot of reasons for this starting with they`re all innocent to the feds can`t find their asses with both hands. I would imagine the answer is somewhere in between. I don`t think Achnod needs to go to a gunshow to advance his cause.

Someone should send this has been Michael Moore`s lament on gun control. Maybe one ninny`s word to another will get the point across.
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Old October 26, 2001, 05:17 AM   #10
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who is Eric Holder?
Some a-hole with an anti gun agenda that thinks he's a writer.

ABC, This Week With Sam & Cokie
Sounds like the title of the new Spice Girls CD.
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Old October 26, 2001, 07:03 AM   #11
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"Ali Boumelhem, went to a Michigan gun show, where he was legally exempt from a background check, and purchased assault weapons, shotguns, ammunition and flash suppressors that he intended to ship to the terrorist group Hezbollah."

Gee, I live in Michigan. Wonder why I've a;ways had to pass a NICS check when I buy a gun at a gunshows. Terrorist looking dudes must be exempt, eh?

More Lies and Crap from the media.:barf:
Fred S

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Old October 26, 2001, 10:32 AM   #12
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Convicted felons cannot legally purchase weapons from anyone. All this law would do is make the person who sold the weapon a criminal too.

All of the hijackers on 9/11 were not listed as felons and would not be prevented from buying a gun anywhere in this country even if we did "tighten America's gun laws."

"Okay, so maybe it won't do anything, but we've got to do SOMETHING."
There are two types of men: those with guns, and those at their mercy.
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Old October 26, 2001, 10:34 AM   #13
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His e-mail address is:
[email protected]
There are two types of men: those with guns, and those at their mercy.
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Old October 26, 2001, 10:35 AM   #14
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To keep guns out of the hands of terrorist all we need do is disarm the entire federal government and all of it's employees. Simple enough.
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Old October 26, 2001, 12:08 PM   #15
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scud! right on!
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Old October 26, 2001, 12:31 PM   #16
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Scud, hope you don't mind I had to steal your line of wisdom in my email to this pr*ck.

here's the email

Sorry, but your article is ridiculous!
Do you actually believe the hype that terrorists are buying guns at gunshows? when they can get guns in their own countries for free, courtesy of the U.S. government?

You need to do more investigative reporting if you want to be a real writer, not spew the same lack of fact B.S. that most lazy media writers keep regurgitating over and over.

Have you ever been to a gunshow? No? Try going sometime. Ask if you a guy selling overpriced military look-alike (but not functioning-like) at a table if he can sell you some Automatic weapons, or grenades. Try not to get flecks of spit on your face as he laughs in it.

Terrorists want REAL weapons, not the politically correct single shot, neutered weapons you buy at gunshows. And our government gives these out to foreign countries, but not it's citizens. Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Israel, need I really go on?

To keep guns out of the hands of terrorist all we need do is disarm the entire federal government and all of it's employees. Simple enough. There's your answer. Not disarming the citizens who obey the rules.

Quit bottom feeding and learn some facts. Read up on the Warsaw Ghetto. Or get modern and learn about how the Taliban disarmed Afghani citizens before they could take over. The real humdinger is what the Soviet Union did to it's disarmed citizens, scoring #1 in murdering it's own citizens.

More facts, closer to home. You want a REAL gun, terrorist style? why go to the gunshow where there are cops at the door and cops walking around buying ammunition and so forth. Yes, cops. Go to a gunshow and see for yourself. If you want hardware, in this country and don't have a crooked government source, you buy it from the drug-dealers. Who import the goodies and get let out of prison over and over and keep illegal imports (without background checks I might add) flowing the blackmarket.

Didn't know any of this? Well, maybe you should stop day-trading and do your research! Before writing articles. I give you a "D" on this paper, with opportunity for make-up.
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Old October 26, 2001, 12:41 PM   #17
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As far as I can tell, Eric Holder has always been anti-RKBA. I think the loony left is grooming him for a starring national role. He has made quite a few television appearances when he was assistant US Attorney General under Janet Reno.
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Old October 26, 2001, 03:21 PM   #18
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Just sent the following to the Washington Post. Didn't bother with Eric "My mind is made up, don't confuse me with facts" Holder.

Eric Holder's recent article "Keeping Guns Away from Terrorists" (Oct. 25, 2001) is
a solution in search of a problem, and is the kind of rabble-rousing journalism that
hurts your paper's credibility with knowledgeable and intelligent readers. A few facts
and conclusions:

1. The so-called "gun show loophole" is a straw man used by knee-jerk gun control
advocates. As an individual who is not a licensed gun dealer, I can meet some one at
a gun show and conduct a private gun sale. The show operator will not rent me a
table or let me exhibit at the show. I can conduct the same private sale through a
classified ad in your paper or an Internet posting.

2. The notion of foreign terrorists arming themselves through unregulated private gun
sales in the United States is utter stupidity. A semi-automatic AK-47 "assault rifle"
clone sells for about $350 new in the US. Fully-automatic real AK-47s are not
available in this country unless you have a special Federal license and pay a $200
per gun tax. The History Channel recently reported that the going price for a
fully-automatic AK-47 on the Third World black market was $75.

3. Many people have failed to notice that no guns were used by terrorists on
9/11/01. Mr. Holder shamelessly plays off of that tragedy to press his own agenda.

4. With absolutely no documentation, Mr. Holder asserts that million of guns change
hands every year through unregulated private sales. He admits that these transactions
are legal. He implies that they are evil, as if every one of these "millions of guns" is a
crime waiting to be committed. Innuendo without support.

5. Mr. Holder's greatest logical fallacy is his leap to the conclusion that outlawing
private gun sales will reduce terrorism. Logic and history contradict that conclusion.
Logically, his proposal to license private gun sales will lead to increased costs,
economic inefficiency, and a further bloated bureaucracy, with little impact on
terrorists. A terrorist with a mission will acquire a gun if necessary, legally or illegally,
or will work around it (i.e., box cutters).

6. Currently laws are not enforced. Mr. Holder cites 700,000 potentially illegal gun
sales stopped by background checks. Most of those attempts to purchase a guns
were crimes in themselves. How many were prosecuted? (Answer: near zero.) If the
government can't or won't enforce existing laws covering licensed sales, how can it
enforce new laws about private sales?

7. Mr. Holder insults the intelligence, integrity, and patriotism of gun-owning
American citizens, implying that many would illegally sell guns to terrorists or others
for a quick buck. No legitimate gun owner would sell a gun to an individual if there
was any suspicion of the legality of the sale, the character of the buyer or the ultimate
use of the gun. This was true before 09/11/01. Legitimate gun owners care about
both the legal liabilities and the moral implications of what they do. The events of
09/11/01 will heighten that awareness, probably make it impossible for legitimate
U.S. citizens with certain ethnic names or appearances to make a legal private gun
purchase for the foreseeable future.

8. New gun control laws, particularly in current circumstances, are doubly insidious:
they make some people think that progress is being made, and they devote people
and resources to pointless and ineffective activities at the cost of much more useful
anti-terrorist measures.

For the most part, laws only affect law-abiding citizens. At best, they inconvenience
law-breakers. Mr. Holder says that: "Current law makes it difficult for law
enforcement officials to check whether suspected criminals or terrorists have bought
a gun." He offers no evidence that his proposals will make it any less difficult. They
would only make it a little harder and a little more expensive for the criminals or
If you find yourself in a fair fight, you have not prepared properly.
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Old October 26, 2001, 11:16 PM   #19
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IM Proud of all of ya.........very good job. Im not as well versed, however i did send him a little something...........
To: [email protected]

I find it remarkable just how low the Anti-gun lobby will go to promote their agendas. You are trying to use FEAR...and an unfounded fear at that. Thats very similar to what "terrorist" do. ....promote agendas with fear. Let try and make some political mileage out of this awful thing that has happened to our country. Perhaps we would be better served getting background checks before getting on planes or buying postage stamps. At least there is a real threat there.
PS-- its well know yer a "Klintonite"...I hope you get over it and find another faith
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