Indictment in Border Agent Murder Turns up the Heat on Holder
"It's going to be some satisfaction for myself when I can see the person who could take part in killing Brian" said Carolyn Terry. She and her husband were disappointed to learn of the indictment from a telephone call from ABC News after it had happened. They hope those working the case will keep them better informed in the future.
Last week, in testimony before Issa's committee, Holder took umbrage with the charge that the ATF operation had been responsible for the death of Terry or Zapata:
The notion that somehow or another that this Justice Department is responsible for those deaths, that assertion is offensive.
What is offensive is the frivolity with which the ATF approached this entire affair. An email sent by the ATF agent in charge of the operation, David J. Voth, reads in part:
I don’t know what all the issues are but we are all adults, we are all professionals, and we have a exciting opportunity to use the biggest tool in our law enforcement tool box. If you don’t think this is fun you’re in the wrong line of work — period! This is the pinnacle of domestic U.S. Law enforcement techniques. After this the tool box is empty. Maybe the Maricopa County Jail is hiring detention officers and you can get paid $30,000 (instead of $100,000) to serve lunch to inmates all day.
We need to get over this bump in the road once and for all and get on with the mission at hand. This can be the most fun you have with ATF, the only one limiting the amount of fun we have is you!
Voth was responding to very real concerns and complaints by fellow ATF agents. CBS reported that they were living in fear that the weapons they allowed across the border would be used to kill Americans:
One agent called the strategy "insane." Another said: "We were fully aware the guns would probably be moved across the border to drug cartels where they could be used to kill."
CBS News has been told at least 11 ATF agents and senior managers voiced fierce opposition to the strategy. "It got ugly..." said one. There was "screaming and yelling" says another. A third warned: "this is crazy, somebody is gonna to get killed."
One agent argued with a superior asking, "are you prepared to go to the funeral of a federal officer killed with one of these guns?" Another said every time there was a shooting near the border, "we would all hold our breath hoping it wasn't one of 'our' guns."
Holder must stop obfuscating, and the DoJ must release all relevant information to congressional investigators -- something PJM reported last month they have refused to do. And Holder must answer two simple questions truthfully -- what did you know, and when did you know it?
(Also read "Holder holds on to closing Gitmo" at the Tatler.)