The Spanish television station Univision has aired a report on the ATF’s “Operation Fast and Furious”, and its violent impact on Mexico. The report focuses on Mexican murders in which drug cartels used the guns “walked” across the border in a failed gun tracking scheme by American authorities. So far the investigation by the House oversight committee has focused mostly on the death of border patrol Agent Brian Terry, but this broadcast showed the horror the operation has contributed to across the border.
The scene of one massacre in which “Fast and Furious” guns were used was a birthday party with about 60 teenagers, which La Linea cartel members surrounded, before entering the home and opening fire. Other cartel members waited outside for anyone who happened to escape. 14 young men and women were killed and another 12 were wounded before the cartel members fled the scene. Three high caliber “Fast and Furious” weapons were found at the scene. This is just one of many scenes of violence involving ATF weapons fed over the border by the American government.
“Univision News identified a total of 57 more previously unreported firearms that were bought by straw purchasers monitored by ATF during Operation Fast and Furious, and then recovered in Mexico in sites related to murders, kidnappings, and at least one other massacre,” the Univision report reads. (Full Article).
“Fast and Furious” weapons were also involved in the murders of 18 young men killed at a rehabilitation center in Mexico. The report found out which circumstances included “Fast and Furious” weapons by tracing the serial numbers of guns found at murder scenes and in connection to other murders, and claims that 57 guns used in Mexican murders were not mentioned in the recent congressional investigation report.
The father of a victim killed by a “Fast and Furious” gun wielding cartel member lamented that it seems Americans are not interested in the violence which our government contributes to, until it reaches our border. He was referring to the fact that most of the controversy surrounding the operation has involved murdered border patrol Agent Brian Terry, without mentioning the hundreds of victims from Mexico. And the mainstream media seems to be quite silent over this gargantuan screw up by the Obama administration, specifically Attorney General Eric Holder who heads the DOJ, which the ATF falls under.
Univision says the Obama administration’s actions “inadvertently” helped fuel violence and a war between the cartels.
“In Mexico, the timing of the operation coincided with an upsurge of violence in the war among the country’s strongest cartels,” according to Univision.
This whole situation also raises more questions about the documents over which Obama exerted executive privilege, to keep them from reaching the panel investigating the botched gun-running operation. Other controversy surrounding the case involved a later retracted false statement made by Attorney General Eric Holder in relation to the operation, and his refusal to provide subpoenaed documents to the House oversight committee. According to Univision about 175 guns reached Mexican cartels (other reports have the number significantly higher) because officials involved in “Fast and Furious” allowed the guns to “walk” across the border after forcing gun retailers in the United States to sell to known “straw-buyers”.
Univision also said that it was Phoenix ATF office leader Bill Newell who ultimately concluded that “the only way to track the guns was to wait for weapons to be recovered in crime scenes in Mexico.”
That charge, if true, would mean the Obama administration decided to allow cartel operatives to kill and injure people with the weapons it gave them, and to recover the guns only after criminals ditched them at brutal — often deadly — crime scenes.
If Eric Holder knew about this operation, and failed to stop it, he must be fired as Attorney General for allowing this type of abuse by American law enforcement. If Eric Holder did not know about this operation, he must be fired for incompetence and failure to articulate appropriate methods of law enforcement to his staff. But even now, still more digging is needed to find the true purpose of the operation “Fast and Furious”.
Many believe it was an attempt by the U.S. government to paint gun stores in a bad light, portraying lax U.S. gun laws as contributing to Mexican violence by drug cartels. It is possible that the Obama administration was looking for an excuse and a way to rally the public to support increased gun control, and restrictions on owning firearms. If the documents Obama exerted executive privilege over were released, it might debunk this theory–or it might substantiate it. [Of course the gun stores would not have sold to these suspicious straw-buyers unless instructed by the ATF and Arizona prosecutors; some store owners continued to be reluctant even after being approached by government officials.]
There is also some evidence to suggest that “Fast and Furious” was never a gun tracking operation at all, but rather a way for the U.S. government to sell weapons to the Drug Cartel Sinoloa in exchange for information on rival drug cartels.