If you asked the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to explain the purpose of their Project
Gunrunner, they would tell you they wanted to stop the alleged flow of guns
to drug cartels and other criminals in Mexico. That would be laughable
if the consequences weren't so deadly.
It would be more accurate to say the ATF wanted to track (and pad) the number of guns going into Mexico in order to further their gun-control objectives. Amazingly, officials forced gun dealers, mostly near the border, to sell weapons to prohibited individuals with connections to gun smugglers. The sales were made over the objections of our law enforcement agents and gun dealers themselves. The program started under President George W. Bush, with the sales going on for over two years now.
After ordering gun dealers to make the illegal sales, ATF officials forced their agents to allow these shady straw buyers to "walk across" the border without being stopped. Thousands of guns made the trip. Several of the guns were used to murder a U.S. Border Patrol agent. When ATF whistleblowers close to the situation stepped forward to speak out, they were blasted by their bosses and Justice Department officials.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder then diabolically stepped up and accused the gun shop owners of illegally shipping guns to the Mexican drug cartels. This is after his Justice Department went so far as to put some of the more resistant ones on his payroll to do just that! To top it off, he allows the President of Mexico to come here to misrepresent the entire dog and pony show to Congress.
"The largest gunrunner to Mexican drug cartels is our government under this Administration," said Wayne LaPierre, the CEO of the National Rifle Association.
The gun dealers' worst fears and warnings came true when guns from Project Gunrunner were found at the murder scenes of U.S. Border Agent Brian Terry in December and ICE agent Jaime Zapata in February.
Eventually, word of this ridiculous Project Gunrunner, and its off-shoot, Operation Fast and Furious, bubbled to the surface. As a result, the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, under Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) started hearings this month to determine if high-ranking Justice Department officials knew about this project. Ditto for the Senate Judiciary Committee.
When Attorney General Eric Holder appeared before the senate committee, he was a paragon of blissful ignorance. Asked by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) last Wednesday how guns allowed to "walk" during the federal gun sting operation ended up at Brian Terry's murder scene, Holder replied: "Frankly, I don't know." In fact, he denied giving authorization to Project Gunrunner.
"Holder is either monumentally stupid, or he is telling a monumental lie," stated Alan Gottlieb, chairman is the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms." He went on: "Either way, it is obvious that Holder is either hiding something or he is hiding from something."
To top it off, Kenneth E. Melson, acting director of ATF, has been stonewalling and refusing to reply to a subpoena for documents from Issa's house committee. Melson has been threatened with contempt, and appears to be aided in the stonewalling by Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich, leading one to surmise Eric Holder is up to his mustache in the cover-up.
Here's where President Barack Obama could step forward and order the Justice Dept to comply with the subpoenas in Congress and release all of the information. That would be doubtful, since the White House is probably in bed with the Justice Dept. here. And the theory is floating around that the grand plan is to have Mexico sue U.S. gun dealers and shut them down for good.
Congressional investigators came to Arizona last month. CBS News reported one of the key figures involved in the Phoenix-based "Fast and Furious" segment of the gun-running sting may provide a link to Director of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano by way of U.S. Attorney for Arizona Dennis Burke. Questioned in March, Napolitano said it was "premature" to comment on the details of the controversy and she was "not aware" an agent under Homeland Security was on the AFT Fast and Furious task force in Phoenix.
Nobody knows nothin'.