#6 U.S. Government Provides Weapons For Mexican Drug Cartels
For a long time there were those that claimed that the U.S. government was providing guns to Mexican drug cartels, but nobody wanted to listen. Well, it is all now a matter of public record. It turns out that the U.S. government facilitated the transfer of thousands of guns into the hands of Mexican drug cartels. The following is a brief excerpt from a CBS News report that discusses the fierce opposition that many ATF agents expressed to allowing thousands of guns to be given into the hands of the Mexican drug cartels.... On the phone, one Project Gunrunner source (who didn't want to be identified) told us just how many guns flooded the black market under ATF's watchful eye. "The numbers are over 2,500 on that case by the way. That's how many guns were sold - including some 50-calibers they let walk." 50-caliber weapons are fearsome. For months, ATF agents followed 50-caliber Barrett rifles and other guns believed headed for the Mexican border, but were ordered to let them go. One distraught agent was often overheard on ATF radios begging and pleading to be allowed to intercept transports. The answer: "Negative. Stand down." 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."Amazingly, three of the key ATF officials involved in putting thousands of guns into the hands of Mexican drug cartels were recently promoted.
Keeping American weapons from getting into the hands of Mexican gangs is the goal of a program called "Project Gunrunner." But critics say it's doing exactly the opposite. CBS News investigative correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reports on what she found.
December 14, 2010.The place: a dangerous smuggling route in Arizona not far from the border. A special tactical border squad was on patrol when gunfire broke out and agent Brian Terry was killed. Kent, Brian's brother, said "he was my only brother. That was the only brother I had. I'm lost." The assault rifles found at the murder were traced back to a U.S. gun shop. Where they came from and how they got there is a scandal so large, some insiders say it surpasses the shoot-out at Ruby Ridge and the deadly siege at Waco.To understand why, it helps to know something about "Project Gunrunner" an operation run by theATF the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
"ProjectGunrunner" deployed new teams of agents to the southwest border. The idea: to stop the flow of weapons from the US to Mexico's drug cartels. But in practice, sources tell CBS News, ATF's actions had the opposite result: they allegedly facilitated the delivery of thousands of guns into criminal hands.CBS News wanted to ask ATF officials about the case, but they wouldn't agree to an interview. We were able to speak to six veteran ATF agents and executives involved. They don't want to be quoted by name for fear of retaliation. These are their allegations. More at HERE
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ProjectGunrunner is a project of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) intended to stem the flow offirearms into Mexico, in an attempt to deprive the Mexican drug cartels of weapons. The primary tactic of Project Gunrunner is interdiction of straw purchasers and unlicensed dealers to prevent legal guns from entering the black market; between 2005 and 2008, 650 such cases involving 1,400 offenders and 12,000 firearms were referred for prosecution. However other tactics ("gunwalking" and "controlled delivery") have lead to controversy. In early 2011, the project became controversial when it was revealed that Operation Wide Receiver (2006-2007) and Operation Fast and Furious (2009-2010) had allowed guns to "walk" into the hands of Mexican drug cartels. Project Gunrunner is a project of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) intended to stem the flow of firearms into Mexico, in an attempt to deprive the Mexican drug cartels of weapons. The primary tactic of Project Gunrunner is interdiction of straw purchasers and unlicensed dealers to prevent legal guns from entering the black market; between 2005 and 2008, 650 such cases involving 1,400 offenders and 12,000 firearms were referred for prosecution. However other tactics ("gunwalking" and "controlled delivery") have lead to controversy. In early 2011, the project became controversial when it was revealed that Operation Wide Receiver (2006-2007) and Operation Fast and Furious (2009-2010) had allowed guns to "walk" into the hands of Mexican drug cartels.
3 May 2013
OBAMA BLAMES U.S. FOR GUN SMUGGLING IN MEXICO; NO MENTION OF FAST AND FURIOUS
President Barack Obama told the Mexican people today that the United States is partly to blame for Mexico’s drug violence because of illegal drugs and gun smuggling. However, he did not mention the gun smuggling undertaken by his own administration under the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Operation Fast and Furious.
Speaking to Mexican university students, Obama pointed a finger at his own country, as Reuters reported:
Drug-fueled violence in Mexico is not entirely the fault of the Mexican people, he said. Instead, the United States shares the blame because much of the violence is centered around the Americans' demand for illegal drugs and the fact that guns are smuggled into Mexico from the United States.
"In this relationship there is no senior partner or junior partner. We are two equal partners, two sovereign nations that must work together in mutual interest and mutual respect," Obama said.
Obama also vowed to jail gun smugglers--though did not mention any members of his own administration:
We recognize that most of the guns used to commit violence here in Mexico come from the United States...we’ll keep increasing the pressure on the gun traffickers who bring illegal guns into Mexico, and we’ll keep putting these criminals where they belong--behind bars.
Far from pursuing the smugglers in Operation Fast and Furious, President Obamaasserted executive privilege over documents related to the operation last year in an attempt to bar congressional investigations.
Fast and Furious was a gun-walking operation out of the Phoenix ATF office. Agents allowed guns to fall into the hands of Mexican drug cartels and did nothing to trace or intercept the weapons. It started in the fall of 2009 and only ended in December 2010 when Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was murdered in Arizona; the guns at the scene were traced to Fast and Furious.
Over 300 deaths in Mexico are linked to Fast and Furious guns and hundreds are still missing. No one within the DOJ has been held accountable and no one has revealed who came up with Fast and Furious or who approved it.
Evidence shows Fast and Furious was used as a way to promote tighter gun control laws. There is also plenty of evidence that shows knowledge of the operation went into the upper echelons of the DOJ and other departments.
Breitbart News’s Joel Pollak reported in July 2011 that Representative Darrell Issa and Senator Charles Grassley requested communications between the White House, State Department, and DOJ pertaining to Fast and Furious.
In March 2009, about six months before Fast and Furious launched, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Mexico almost the exact same thing Obama said today:
“Our insatiable demand for illegal drugs fuels the drug trade,” Mrs. Clinton said, using unusually blunt language. “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.”
The following month Obama repeated Clinton’s sentiments:
"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 line our shared border."
Obama forgets evidence proves the majority of guns in Mexico do not come from America. Only 17% have been traced back to America.
If Obama wants to stop gun smuggling to Mexico, he needs to start in his own administration.
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Border Patrol: Rules hinder effort to oust drug spotters
The Washington Times
The chief of the U.S. Border Patrol said Tuesday that his agents have a tough time ousting armed drug cartel spotters from the tops of U.S. mountains because the rules of engagement constrain them.
For years, cartels have stationed spotters on U.S. territory to help track American border efforts and to guide smugglers around roadblocks and past where agents are stationed. But in recent months, those spotters have gotten more attention as Congress prepares to debate an immigration legalization bill.
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“Why don’t we take those people out?” said Sen. Ron Johnson, Wisconsin Republican.
Sen. Thomas R. Carper, Delaware Democrat, who chairs the SenateHomeland Security Committee, said he was shocked to learn of the spotters during a trip to the border earlier this year, saying that if U.S. troops had come across spotter locations in Iraq or Afghanistan, those sites would have been taken out.
Border Patrol Chief Michael J. Fisher said there’s a major difference between those war zones and the U.S.-Mexico border, where agents have to obey strict rules of engagement.
“The rules of engagement, what we call our ‘use of force,’ applies to individuals on the street or whether they’re up on a mountaintop,” he told the Senate panel.
Chief Fisher said the agency had had some success in ousting “dozens” of spotters from mountaintops, but he couldn’t say how many more locations remains.
The mountaintop spotters have been a thorny problem for years.
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Two years ago, Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican, and Homeland Security Secretary Janet A. Napolitano engaged in a heated exchange over how many spotters there were. Mr. McCain said he had been told there were hundreds, while Ms. Napolitano replied that there were hundreds of peaks that could be used, but there weren’t hundreds of actual spotters.
“Look, they are there, and everyone knows they’re there, and for you and your staff to deny that they’re there is sort of symptomatic to me,” Mr. McCain said.
The Washington Times has visited well-camouflaged spotter locations in the Sonoran Desert National Monument 75 miles north of the border, with a view of Interstate 8, which runs from just south of Phoenix west to San Diego.
Officials told The Times that every potential smuggling corridor in Arizona is monitored by mountaintop spotters, who are usually low-level cartel employees or those who owe a debt to the cartel.
They are armed with radios and cellphones and occasionally with weapons, and are sometimes held responsible if the drug loads they are spotting for are interdicted by authorities.