Fast and Furious: Three Questions Not Asked
Attorney General Eric Holder provided a sixth unsatisfactory performance in front of Congress this past week, dodging questions about the nation's deadly gunrunning scandal.
To date, the media has largely buried the story of the Department of Justice scheme that contributed to the deaths of a federal agent and more than 300 Mexican citizens. Such a story would have held front-page, top-of-the-hour focus until answers were provided and officials had been hounded out of office or imprisoned had it occurred under a Republican administration.
But Barack Obama is a Democrat, and black. Also, Eric Holder is a Democrat, and black. It is inconceivable for the mainstream media to grill the decisions, motives, or goals of black Democrats for fear of being "racist" according to their own definition of the term, which is criticism of a minority member who professes the "correct" political ideology. Radically different rules apply for minority Republicans.
Whether Operation Fast and Furious was a legitimate law enforcement operation, as the Department of Justice claims, or was part of a plot to impose gun control, it was radically different from all other border gun operations in one crucial way. Operation Fast and Furious was the only border gun operation that was undertaken with the full intention of the straw-purchased guns leaving the control of law enforcement officers and reaching the armories of drug cartel murderers. That fact alone should lead to the impeachment or administrative removal of everyone, from field agents to political appointees and elected officials that knew or should have known about the plot.
But that is only half of the horror story.
Operation Fast and Furious was specifically conceived so that "walked" guns would be recovered at crime scenes in Mexico. Their serial numbers would be provided to the ATF by Mexican authorities for tracing. Regardless of motive, the entire operation was premised on weapons being recovered at crime scenes in Mexico, and law enforcement agencies are well aware that criminals primarily abandon weapons only after they've been used in serious felony crimes such as murder or attempted murder.
Operation Fast and Furious was conceived knowing that Mexican nationals would be sacrificed in significant numbers if the tracing operation had any chance of working.
Operation Fast and Furious allowed more than 2,000 weapons to "walk," indicating that those in charge of the operation were willing to let thousands of Mexican nationals die in an effort to identify the ringleaders of a cartel's weapon acquisition team.
The Department of Justice claims that they did this so that they could trace the weapons to higher-ups in the cartels and take down entire gun-smuggling networks. Decent people can disagree on many aspects of crime fighting and the amount of risk we should be willing to absorb to fight crime, but we should all agree that no criminal network is worth sacrificing the lives of hundreds or thousands of victims. Yet that is precisely the way Operation Fast and Furious was designed to work.
The first question is obvious, and yet remains unasked by the media and unanswered by the Obama administration and Department of Justice:
- Who conceived this radical departure from normal law enforcement practices? Who conceived an operation that depended upon the deaths of hundreds or thousands of Mexican nationals for its success?
But as disturbing as the conception of the plot was, it was merely an idea, if one that most would agree is objectively evil in design. It should have died stillborn on the proverbial drawing board. Somehow, this idea was not just allowed, but someone with significant political and operational clout within the Justice Department was able to shepherd this high-risk and inarguably lethal program from idea through planning and budgeting into execution. This strongly suggests high-level sponsorship within the Department of Justice. This demands answers to a second question:
- Which Department of Justice officials saw that Operation Fast and Furious was dependent on hundreds or thousands of firearms being given to the cartels and recovered at the scenes of crimes, knew that the crimes in question were likely to be murders of Mexican nationals or U.S. citizens along the Mexican border where the cartels operate, and approved the operation anyway?