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  1. #1
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    DOJ Inspector General Report Proves Dems Misled Public On ‘Wide Receiver’


    DOJ Inspector General Report Proves Dems Misled Public On ‘Wide Receiver’

    George W. Bush's administration had absolutely nothing to do with the operation.

    by BOB OWENS/PJ Media

    September 20, 2012 - 10:09 am


    The inspector general’s investigation into the Department of Justice’s role in Operation Fast and Furious was not expected to be a blockbuster report. The primary interest in the document for members of the media, investigators, and the public alike was how Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz would choose to participate in a cover-up.

    Horowitz did not disappoint. The six-part, 471-page report dedicated an entire chapter to Operation Wide Receiver, a program that began in 2006 and did not terminate until mid-2009.

    Wide Receiver was an ATF operation started by local agents during the Bush administration which allowed hundreds of weapons to “walk” into Mexico. During congressional hearings, House Oversight Committee Democrats pounded a “Bush did it too” theme — attempting to excuse the Obama administration for Fast and Furious because a similar operation took place in Arizona prior to Obama taking office.

    But what precisely did the inspector general’s report say about the practice of gunwalking during Operation Wide Receiver, and does it actually support what Democrats and the media have claimed?

    The first thing established by Horowitz is that the OIG’s report was by no means a “finished” report or the final word on either Wide Receiver or Fast and Furious. It did not compel those most closely linked to possible corrupt behavior to testify, something that only a much-needed criminal investigation by an independent prosecutor could provide.

    Key personnel involved in both cases flatly refused to talk to the inspector general (a significant detail most reporting on the story to date has overlooked). Charles Higman was the Resident Agent in Charge (RAC) in the ATF Tucson office during Operation Wide Receiver and had direct management responsibility. Wide Receiver was “his” case, and he flatly refused to respond to the OIJ’s repeated requests for interviews.
    Operation Wide Receiver started in early 2006, when a Federal Firearms License (FFL) holder contacted the ATF about a purchaser that had bought six AR15 lower receivers (the individual part that is legally the gun) at a gun show, and wanted to purchase 20 more. The FFL suspected the purchaser, an 18-year-old, was a straw purchaser. The ATF formally opened an investigation on March 2, 2006, after interviewing the FFL.

    Agents then “lost” the first batch of 20 guns on March 20 when they were given the slip by a smuggler.
    By March 28, the straw purchaser was recorded making arrangements to buy more lower receivers, and stated that the lower receivers were being illegally converted into fully automatic weapons. The ATF refused to arrest the straw purchaser at the time, hoping the illegal gunsmith could also be busted.

    RAC Higman then sent an email explicitly calling for 50 lower receivers to be walked on March 30:

    The bandits have put a $ deposit toward buying 50 this Sat., and intend on 50 more in the next week or two. We have verified 26 to date; the USAO is on board. We are looking to let these 50 walk while identifying the location/subject who is doing the conversions with an eye to doing Search/Arrest warrant the next go ‘round.

    Higman’s email was the first explicit, documented mention in the IG report noting an intention of facilitating weapons smuggling to Mexican drug cartels in hopes of catching “bigger fish.”
    PJ Media » DOJ Inspector General Report Proves Dems Misled Public On ‘Wide Receiver’
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    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    The Justice Department’s Tracy Schmaler and 3 Characteristics of Political Thugs

    September 18th, 2012
    By J. Christian Adams

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    In the days following the Night of the Long Knives in 1934, a bizarre press conference took place in Berlin. Hermann Goering stood before the foreign press corps and explained why Hitler’s regime had the obligation to murder hundreds of Germans in the dead of night without due process. The farce is described in Erik Larson’s In the Garden of Beasts.
    At the time, Germany still had one foot barely in in the democratic past and the other foot dragging the Reich toward indescribable madness. One wonders what the unrecorded thoughts were of the assembled journalists. Some might have considered this an aberration, a frightening yet short fit of madness by a man trying to reverse Germany’s malaise. Such apologists were particularly common in Roosevelt’s State Department. Others reporters surely had enough human decency to recognize the warning signs of a democratic and enlightened people experiencing a rapid moral collapse.
    Goering, however, as was his way, had no shame in standing before representatives of the foreign free press and justifying murder. It should have been obvious to everyone listening to him that the Nazis were a demonicsort, capable of anything, and afterwards equally capable of justifying their twisted behavior.
    Today’s revelation by Matt Boyle that the Justice Department is coordinating attacks on private citizens (including me) and coordinating with Media Matters on a wider scale than I first reported some months ago here at PJ Media provokes the question — why?
    I raise this German history not to compare the events of that era to events today in America, but rather to note peculiar characteristics common to political thuggery, regardless of the degree or nationality of the thuggery.
    To be perfectly clear, Eric Holder is no Hermann Goering, so the flying monkeys at Media Matters can abandon that meme. Others, at Investor’s Business Daily, for example, are willing to make comparisons I do not:
    After the acts, the DOJ then praised them: “Great piece,” gushed Schmaler after Media Matters attacked DOJ whistle-blowers J. Christian Adams and Christopher Coates. . . .
    Incredibly, this isn’t happening in some totalitarian dictatorship or banana republic, but here in the U.S.
    Now we see something else — Media Matters acting as an ideological goon squad of the Justice Department to enforce the kind of press Obama wants.
    This thuggish meddling crosses the line into dictatorship, and calls for a congressional investigation.
    Some time has passed since Matt Boyle broke the story today about the close coordination between Tracy Schmaler, head of the Office of Public Affairs (OPA), and Media Matters. Megyn Kelly’s Fox report notes that Schmaler writes “great piece” after attacking former Justice Department Voting Section Chief Christopher Coates. Coates is one of the most decent and courteous lawyers I have ever met. An attack on him by the head of OPA while he was still employed at DOJ is a disgrace.

    Schmaler’s high-salaried thuggery has three characteristics common to political thugs.
    First, like Schmaler, political thugs don’t think they are doing anything wrong. Thugs are convinced of their cause. They can’t imagine anyone questioning them. The moral among us call her behavior “the ends justifying the means.” Schmaler, and most likely her overlords like Eric Holder and James Cole, apparently don’t see anything wrong with her behavior, else they would no longer pay her enormous salary ($161,289).



    Tracy Schmaler

    Second, political thugs have an unintentionally comic element. Schmaler’s clumsy and intimate relationship with Matt Gertz at Media Matters, while she hasn’t returned calls from Matt Boyle at the Daily Caller or Quin Hillyer at the American Spectator for years, is laughable. Schmaler’s quick temper and screams are notorious among reporters, provoking bewildered chuckles. She has yelled at Pete Williams of NBC, Sharyl Attkisson of CBS, Boyle, Hillyer, and many many more.
    In most jobs, if you screamed at your customers (or, for that matter, anyone), you wouldn’t have a job for long — unless of course your boss approves of such behavior. The German verb “schmalern” means to reduce, narrow or belittle. Tracy Schmaler has reduced and belittled the long dignified history of the Department of Justice where she works.
    Third, while political thugs often have an unintentional comic streak, their behavior is deadly serious and destructive. Consider that Schmaler has taken the lead in defending the murderous Fast and Furious program at DOJ. She literally found herself in the disgraceful role of spinning away culpability for a government policy that killed people.
    How convenient for a hip, young resident of the Beltway living in comfort. While real people were dying real deaths, she enjoyed a fat salary for hiding the government behavior that caused it. She lied to the media about Fast and Furious and screamed at those she didn’t lie to.
    Most of us wonder how someone like that sleeps at night. But history is full of people, both petty and dangerous, who can sleep at night no matter what they do during the day.

    Rule of Law » The Justice Department’s Tracy Schmaler and 3 Characteristics of Political Thugs




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