From the UK Telegraph:
Here’s what Fast and Furious is all about – and for the uninitiated, be prepared for a shock. In 2009, the US government instructed Arizona gun sellers illegally to sell arms to suspected criminals. Agents working for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) were then ordered not to stop the sales but to allow the arms to “walk” across the border into the arms of Mexican drug-traffickers. According to the Oversight Committee’s report, “The purpose was to wait and watch, in hope that law enforcement could identify other members of a trafficking network and build a large, complex conspiracy case…. [The ATF] initially began using the new gun-walking tactics in one of its investigations to further the Department’s strategy. The case was soon renamed ‘Operation Fast and Furious.”
Tracing the arms became difficult, until they starting appearing at bloody crime scenes. Many Mexicans have died from being shot by ATF sanctioned guns, but the scandal only became public after a US federal agent, Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, was killed by one of them in a fire fight. ATF whistle blowers started to come forward and the Department of Justice was implicated. It’s estimated that the US government effectively supplied 1,608 weapons to criminals, at a total value of over $1 million. Aside from putting American citizens in danger, the AFT also supplied what now amounts to a civil war within Mexico.
It’s important to note that the Bush administration oversaw something similar to Fast and Furious. Called Operation Wide Receiver, it used the common tactic of “controlled delivery,” whereby agents would allow an illegal transaction to take place, closely follow the movements of the arms, and then descend on the culprits. But Fast and Furious is different because it was “uncontrolled delivery,” whereby the criminals were essentially allowed to drop off the map. Perhaps more importantly, Wide Receiver was conducted with the cooperation of the Mexican government. Fast and Furious was not.
Holy crap, somebody in the media is reporting it right (well, pretty darn close, anyway).
Under Operation Fast and Furious, which ran between 2009 and early 2011, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives let about 2,000 assault weapons slip across the border to Mexico so the guns could be tracked up the drug cartel ladder. The bureau kept A.T.F. agents in Mexico in the dark while their superiors botched the surveillance. Some of the guns turned up in deadly shootouts, including one where an American border agent was slain.
Except those are lies, because there was no tracing, there was no surveillance, and the objective was to have the guns turn up at crime scenes. ATF supervisors were almost “giddy” in the words of John Dodson, when they found guns at murder scenes in Mexico. It was not “botched”. Fast and Furious did exactly what it set out to accomplish. They just ended up breaking the wrong eggs while making their omelette.
The Republicans shamelessly turned what should be a routine matter into a pointless constitutional confrontation.
There was no reason the House committee and the Justice Department could not work out a deal to produce the documents requested, or some form of them. Instead, they show again that every issue, large or small, can be turned into ammunition for political combat.
And the NYT goes full retard. The DOJ’s “offer” was that Holder either wouldn’t give them the documents at all, or he would give them a briefing on the documents. The “deal” was either Oversight doesn’t get the docs, or they don’t get the docs. Not surprising that the NYT would be full of disgusting leftist partisan hacks who are ignorant of the facts of the case to the point that they sound like apologists for murder (and they are), but every once in a while, you’d think the facts of the case would actually get through to the schmucks who call themselves the “paper of record”. Really, if it weren’t for being a parody of leftist groupthink to be mocked, they’d serve no purpose at all.