Operation Fast and Furious has long been an outrage, albeit a barely reported one. That has changed with President Obama's assertion of "executive privilege" over the documents related to the scandal by the Department of Justice, effectively bringing attention to the idea that the executive branch may be involved in the ill-advised operation.
Conspiracy theories abound and evidence is mounting that the rationale for this criminal and fatal program had an ulterior motive: to justify gun control. Last week on his radio show, Rush Limbaugh raised eyebrows when he said, that Fast and Furious was simply a way to get assault weapons banned. He stated, "Politically, a ban on assault weapons wouldn't work," and therefore the stakeholders needed to "create a crisis," using Fast and Furious to ultimately justify a ban on assault weapons.
Steven Colbert mocked this theory, stating that it was "the fevered ramblings of a syphilitic brain..." Watch here:
It certainly sounds like a silly conspiracy theory...but consider...
The investigation by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee under House Republican Darrell Issa has been going on for 16 months, with little satisfaction.
No documentation has been provided that explains:
- why 2,000 guns would be allowed to "walk" into Mexico.
- how the guns would be tracked.
- who authorized this ill-advised program.
These seem to be the most important issues facing this investigation. After all, two border patrol agents have been killed and one has been injured. These weapons have been found at 100 bloody crime scenes. How many innocent Mexicans died because of this program?
In July of 2011, Issa told Fox News that under the Obama administration:
"...there seems to be a 'don't bother to enforce at all' policy, so that disturbs us Â— that there's less gun enforcement about illegal gun transactions under an administration that theoretically is more for gun control, and George W. Bush went out of his way to try to help the Mexicans by having a zero tolerance to illegal guns sales that could end up in Mexico."
Fast forward to April 2012, when Darrell Issa, after a year of being stonewalled by the Justice Department, stated that, if there "is no explanation that makes good sense, there can only be an explanation that makes the sense of ulterior motives of unthinkable proportions."
"Back in February 2011, Assistant Attorney General Ron Welch, in response to the investigations by Rep. Issa and Sen. Chuck Grassley of the Fast and Furious gun-'walking' program run out of ATF's Phoenix office, wrote a letter stating that the 'allegation that ATF "sanctioned" or otherwise knowingly allowed the sale of assault weapons ... is false.'" It actually was true. "In December the department formally withdrew the Feb. 4 letter, and Holder lamely told Congress that the officials responsible for the false claims 'did not know at the time that the information that they provided was inaccurate.'" Credibility is already deteriorating at this point for the DoJ.
Katie Pavlich has been on this case for quite a while. In July of 2011, she wrote a piece for Townhall saying that Fast and Furious was designed to promote gun control. Her article is a must read, as it is comprehensive and difficult to ignore. Sadly, the mainstream media did ignore her, and the scandal in general, until they were forced to report it.
CBS News reporter Sharyl Attkisson declares that the ATF used Operation Fast and Furious to "argue for controversial new rules about gun sales." The article states that "emails show they [ATF officials] discussed using the sales, including sales encouraged by ATF, to justify a new gun regulation called 'Demand Letter 3.'"
Consider the following quotes from President Obama, Eric Holder, and Hillary Clinton in 2009, the year Fast and Furious was implemented. These statements seem to be laying the framework for future policy changes and they all claim that weapons purchased in the United States make their way to Mexico:
President Obama on a visit to Mexico in April 2009 said, "This war is being waged with guns purchased not here but in the United States...more than 90 percent of the guns recovered in Mexico come from the United States, many from gun shops that lay in our shared border."
Eric Holder said in February 2009, "Putting the ban back in place [on assault weapons] would not only be a positive move by the United States, it would help cut down on the flow of guns going across the border into Mexico, which is struggling with heavy violence among drug cartels along the border."
Hillary Clinton said in April 2009, "The guns that are sold in the United States, which are illegal in Mexico, get smuggled over our border and arm these terrible drug-dealing criminals so that they can outgun these poor police officers along the border and elsewhere in Mexico."
Hillary Clinton said in March 2009, "Our inability to prevent weapons from being illegally smuggled across the border to arm these criminals causes the deaths of police officers, soldiers and civilians."
An interesting insight into Eric Holder can be found from 1995 (CSPAN): He states, "We have to be repetitive about this, it is not enough to have a catchy ad...we need to do this every day of the week and just really brainwash people into thinking about guns in a vastly different way [around the 3:00 minute mark]."
If one simply puts two and two together, Mr. Issa's allegations certainly have more credibility. Hopefully, the president will reverse his decision to withhold these documents, which can provide insight into this program; if not, the idea that this program was put into place to justify gun control will take on a life of it's own. After all, President Obama did state in 2008, "The use of executive power or executive privilege is subject to abuse."
It is time to allow the elected representatives to do their job.