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  1. #1
    Senior Member MontereySherry's Avatar
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    Holder: No cover-up in 'Fast and Furious,' no effort to hide details of the operation

    Holder: No cover-up in 'Fast and Furious,' no effort to hide details of the operation
    Published February 02, 2012

    Attorney General Eric Holder vigorously denied a "cover-up" by the Justice Department over "Operation Fast and Furious," telling a House panel investigating the botched gun-running program that he has nothing to hide and suggesting the probe is a "political" effort to embarrass the administration.

    "There's no attempt at any kind of cover-up," Holder told lawmakers well into a hearing about whether he had been forthright in responding to requests of the House Oversight and Government Relations Committee led by Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif.

    "We're not going to be hiding behind any kind of privileges or anything," he said.

    The hearing came after Issa and Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, his Senate partner in the probe, asserted that top Justice officials are covering up events surrounding the flawed gun-smuggling probe.

    Issa made the accusation in a letter threatening to seek a contempt of Congress ruling against Holder for failing to turn over congressionally subpoenaed documents that were created after problems with Fast and Furious came to light.

    Republicans also released a report in the hours ahead of the hearing claiming that Justice Department officials "had much greater knowledge of, and involvement in, Fast and Furious than it has previously acknowledged."

    Asked whether his assistants, Deputy Attorney General Gary Grindler or Assistant Attorney Lanny Breuer, head of the department's Criminal Division, ever authorized gunwalking or the tactics employed in Fast and Furious, Holder responded not to his knowledge.

    "Not only did I not authorize those tactics, when I found out about them I told the field and everybody in the United States Department of Justice that those tactics had to stop. That they were not acceptable and that gunwalking was to stop. That was what my reaction [was] to my finding out about the use of that technique," he added.

    He added that he doesn't think that the situation warranted the kind of response Republicans were giving after his department provided thousands of documents, and planned to deliver more.

    Holder also rejected arguments that his handling of the case had lost him any support for the effort he was putting forth as attorney general.

    "I don't think the American people have lost trust in me. ... This has become political, I get that," he said.

    But Holder also said no one has been punished "yet" in the case, despite the fact that lost guns from the operation ended up at the crime scene where U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was murdered in December 2010.

    Terry's family has informed the U.S. government that it has six months to respond to its inquiry into Terry's death or face a $25 million lawsuit.

    In the botched operation, more than 1,400 weapons sold to low-level straw purchasers believed to be supplying Mexican drug gangs and other criminals were lost during tracking by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents. Another 700 firearms connected to suspects in the investigation have been recovered, some from crime scenes in Mexico and the U.S., including in Nogales, Ariz., where Terry was killed.

    Holder said he didn't learn about Terry's murder until 24 hours after his death, and at the time did not hear that weapons tied to Fast and Furious were at the scene.

    "I didn't know about Operation Fast and Furious until the beginning parts of 2011 after I received that letter from Senator Grassley, I guess at the end of January and then that was about Operation Gun Runner. I actually learned about the Fast and Furious operation in February of that year."

    Holder told the committee, "I’m not sure exactly how I found out about the term, 'Fast and Furious.'" He testified repeatedly that he never authorized the controversial tactics employed in the operation.

    "There is no attempt at any kind of cover-up," Holder said. "We have shared huge amounts of information" and will continue to do so, he said.

    But Holder said under questioning that he has not disciplined anyone for his role in the controversial operation.

    "No I have not as yet -- as yet," Holder said when questioned by Issa on the matter. "There have been personnel changes made at ATF. We obviously have a new U.S. attorney in Arizona. We have made personnel switches at ATF. People have been moved out of positions."

    Holder's statements on the Justice Department's role in the operation did not sit well with Republican lawmakers on the committee, who accused the attorney general of intentionally withholding key documents in the case.

    "The conclusion that I come to is there are some things in there that's being hidden that you don't want us to see," said Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind. "We have every right under the Constitution to check on what you're doing... So for you to deny this committee anything like that is just dead wrong and I don't think you're going to find any way that you can do it."

    Burton went on to say that 93,000 documents related to the operation are being withheld by the Justice Department even though they've been turned over internally to the department's inspector general, a political appointee, Burton said.

    "And you're saying, well, the separation of powers prohibits you from (delivering them to Congress). That's baloney. That is just baloney," Burton said.

    Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, also questioned Holder's having not discussed the case with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

    "When people know that I'm going to be the subject of these kinds of hearings, you know six times and all that, nobody necessarily wants to get involved in these kinds of things or get dragged into it," Holder responded.

    Issa told Holder the committee will do what is necessary to obtain the information, "If you do not find a legitimate basis to deny us the material we've asked for."

    Holder said earlier during testimony that he would release additional materials "to the extent that I can."

    In Holder's defense, Rep. Edolphus Towns, D-N.Y., claimed the committee has "not obtained one shred of evidence that would contradict your testimony."

    "Not one witness, not one document, not one e-mail, and still some continue to suggest that you did personally authorize gunwalking and the tactics in Operation Fast and Furious."

    Read more:

    Read more: Holder: No Cover-up In 'Fast And Furious,' No Effort To Hide Details Of The Operation | Fox News
    Last edited by MontereySherry; 02-02-2012 at 03:32 PM. Reason: edited for source

  2. #2
    Administrator ALIPAC's Avatar
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    We need the source of this article and writers name near the top please....

    Whoever wrote this lied when they said...

    In the botched operation, more than 1,400 weapons sold to low-level straw purchasers believed to be supplying Mexican drug gangs and other criminals were lost during tracking by Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
    There was no "TRACKING" of these guns. Ive read where tracking devices may have been placed on a handful of the guns, but there was no effort to keep track once they went into Mexico.

    Most of the supposed "TRACKING" for these guns was to see what murder scenes they showed up at.

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  3. #3
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    Or he is a TRAITOROUS LIAR!!
    I'll go with all the above.....
    Last edited by airdale; 02-02-2012 at 03:18 PM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by ALIPAC View Post
    We need the source of this article and writers name near the top please....

    Whoever wrote this lied when they said...

    There was no "TRACKING" of these guns. Ive read where tracking devices may have been placed on a handful of the guns, but there was no effort to keep track once they went into Mexico.

    Most of the supposed "TRACKING" for these guns was to see what murder scenes they showed up at.

    Fast and Furious Was Not Botched

    Katie Pavlich
    Katie Pavlich
    News Editor, Townhall

    “Allowing loads of weapons that we knew to be destined for criminals, this was the plan. It was so mandated.” –Special Agent John Dodson ATF Phoenix Field Division.

    As allegations surrounding Operation Fast and Furious continue to heat up, many major media outlets continue to call the fatal program “botched,” which is a factually incorrect characterization.

    The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines botched as: to foul up hopelessly, to put together in a makeshift way.

    The only thing botched about Operation Fast and Furious is that the American public found out about it. Fast and Furious was carried out exactly as planned: allow straw purchasers to transfer guns to cartels, let those guns get trafficked back to Mexico and see where they end up. There was no plan to trace these guns and no plan to inform the Mexican Government of the operation, either.

    Tactics used during Fast and Furious seem like mistakes, but in fact were just part of the strategy and process of Fast and Furious. Calling the program botched implies the Obama Justice Department didn’t intentionally allow 2000 high powered guns, including AK-47s and .50-caliber sniper rifles, to walk into the hands of ruthless drug cartels without proper tracing mechanisms. The opposite is true. This was the intention of the program, not an operational mistake in the process.

    To prove the operation wasn’t “botched,” let’s take a look at some testimony from ATF whistleblowers about the operation.

    On June 15, 2011 ATF Field Agent John Dodson, one of the first whistleblowers to go public about the scandal, testified under oath before the House Oversight Committee about Fast and Furious.

    “I was involved in this operation, we monitored as they purchased hand guns, AK-47 variants, and .50 caliber rifles almost daily. Rather than contradict any enforcement actions, we took notes, we recorded observations, we tracked movements of these individuals for a short time after their purchases, but nothing more. Knowing all the while, just days after these purchases, the guns that we saw these individuals buy would begin turning up at crime scenes in the United States and Mexico, we still did nothing,” Dodson said. “Allowing loads of weapons that we knew to be destined for criminals, this was the plan. It was so mandated.”
    On July 26, 2011 ATF Senior Special Agent Jose Wall, who is based in Tijuana, Mexico also verified Fast and Furious was intended from the beginning to provide guns to cartels.

    “I could not believe that someone in ATF would so callously let firearms wind up in the hands of criminals. And that this activity has seemingly been approved by our own Justice Department and ATF management in the misguided hope of catching the “big fish,” Wall said. “These firearms that are now in the hands of people who have no regard for human life pose a threat to all of us, a threat to which none of us is immune.”

    ATF field agents knew Fast and Furious had the potential to get people killed, including federal agents. Vince Cefalu was one of those concerned agents and, although he knew he would face retaliation for exposing Fast and Furious to the public, he did it anyway. When Cefalu started speaking out against his superiors within ATF about the way Operation Fast and Furious was being conducted, he was approached within 24 hours and told to stop. He was also threatened and told if he didn’t shut his mouth, he would be relocated to North Dakota, a long way from where he had been working along the southern border with Mexico. Despite threats from his superiors, Cefalu blew the whistle about Operation Fast and Furious anyway, which has landed him under review for what he describes as “a proposal for removal for telling the truth.“

    In September, Cefalu explained his concerns during a Fast and Furious town hall meeting in Tucson.

    “To think that they could do this sort of operation knowing there could be a dead ATF agent at the ends of those guns made me nauseous,” Cefalu said.

    Cefalu also described the skyrocketing murder rate in Mexico as “people getting killed wholesale,” and the federal government gave cartels the guns they need to do it.

    To further prove Fast and Furious wasn’t botched in its implementation, ATF Phoenix Field Division Supervisor at the time, William Newell, described in emails that guns showing up at crime scenes in Mexico was proof the operation was working.

    The only people who have been trustworthy and credible throughout the investigation into Fast and Furious have been ATF whistleblowers. ATF management officials and Department of Justice officials have done nothing but lie, stonewall and cover-up the lethal program.

    The Obama Administration botched the cover-up of Fast and Furious. Lies perpetuated by the Holder Justice Department continue to be shredded by a handful of media outlets, Sen. Charles Grassley, Sen. John Cornyn, Rep. Darrell Issa and members of the House Oversight Committee, but in no way was allowing Mexican cartels to get their hands on high powered weapons a "mistake."

    Fast and Furious Was Not Botched - Page 1 - Katie Pavlich - Townhall Conservative

    more here

    AP Story Leaves Out Key Point on Fast and Furious

    Katie Pavlich
    Katie Pavlich
    News Editor, Townhall

    Oct 04, 2011 06:52 PM EST

    The Associated Press is reporting the following:

    The federal government under the Bush administration ran an operation that allowed hundreds of guns to be transferred to suspected arms traffickers — the same tactic that congressional Republicans have criticized President Barack Obama's administration for using, two federal law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

    When Bush, a Republican, was president, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Tucson, Ariz., used a similar enforcement tactic in a program it called Operation Wide Receiver. The fact that there were two such ATF investigations years apart in separate administrations raises the possibility that agents in still other cases may have allowed guns to "walk."

    The problem is, the "same tactic" under heavy criticism by the House Oversight Committee was not used under President Bush. Operation Fast and Furious started in Fall 2009 and was an offshoot of the Project Gunrunner program implemented under the Bush Administration. Project Gunrunner started as a pilot program in Laredo, Texas and went national in 2006. Project Gunrunner involved the surveillance of straw purchasers buying weapons, but those purchasers were immediately apprehended before crossing back into Mexico or tranferring arms to dangerous criminals. Shortly after Obama took office, Operation Fast and Furious allowed straw purchasers working for Mexican drug cartels to purchase mass amount of weapons in the United States and then take them back to Mexico in addition to allowing them to be lost at stash houses and tranferred to dangerous cartel members. ATF agents who have testified before Congress about the program said the idea was to "trace" those weapons, but the tracing ended up being a total failure as GPS batteries ran out and thousands of guns were lost in Mexico and only found at final violent crime scenes. Did both operations allow for straw purchasers to buy guns under ATF/DOJ surveillance? Yes, however, the key difference between Operation Fast and Furious under Obama and Project Gunrunner under Bush is that under Obama guns were allowed to go back into Mexico without interdiction or arrests. According to Chairman of the House Oversight Committee Darrell Issa, straw purchaser arrests and prosecutions have been way down under this administration, so much so it's almost as if the Obama Justice Department has no interest in prosecuting illegal straw purchasers at all. (A straw purchaser is someone who buys guns illegally for those who cannot buy them. In this case, cartels members can't buy guns, so they hired "straw purchasers" to buy weapons for them)

    Although "Operation Wide Receiver" does need more looking into, for the Associated Press to try and turn the pressure away from President Obama's Attorney General Eric Holder, who may soon be facing perjury charges, onto the Bush Administration is both predictable and non-factual. The "same tactics" under heavy criticism were not used under Bush.

    AP Story Leaves Out Key Point on Fast and Furious - Katie Pavlich

    & more here

    Insider: CIA Orchestrated Operation Fast and Furious

    The Alex Jones Channel Alex Jones Show podcast Prison Planet TV Twitter Alex Jones' Facebook Infowars store

    Federal government allowed Mexican drug cartel to import tons of cocaine into United States

    Paul Joseph Watson
    Friday, August 12, 2011

    Washington Times journalists Robert Farago and Ralph Dixon cite a “CIA insider” to make the claim that Operation Fast and Furious was a Central Intelligence Agency-orchestrated program to arm the Sinaloa drug cartel, a group that was also given the green light to fly tons of cocaine into the United States.

    “In congressional testimony, William Newell, former ATF special agent in charge of the Phoenix Field Division, testified that the Internal Revenue Service, Drug Enforcement Administration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement were “full partners” in Operation Fast and Furious. Mr. Newell’s list left out the most important player: the CIA. According to a CIA insider, the agency had a strong hand in creating, orchestrating and exploiting Operation Fast and Furious,” report Farago and Nixon.

    The program, with its designated cover of tracking where guns went so drug lords who purchased them could later be arrested downstream, was actually a deliberate effort to prevent the Los Zetas drug cartel from staging a successful coup d’etat against the government of Felipe Calderon by arming rival gang Sinaloa, according to the Times writers, a relationship that extended to “(allowing) the Sinaloas to fly a 747 cargo plane packed with cocaine into American airspace – unmolested.”

    “The CIA made sure the trade wasn’t one-way. It persuaded the ATF to create Operation Fast and Furious – a “no strings attached” variation of the agency’s previous firearms sting. By design, the ATF operation armed the Mexican government’s preferred cartel on the street level near the American border, where the Zetas are most active,” states the report.

    The notion that Fast and Furious was used as a cover through which to arm the the Sinaloa cartel would explain why the feds showed little interest in following up where guns ended up once they left the United States.

    The Obama administration and the ATF claim that the Fast and Furious program was part of a sting operation to catch leading Mexican drug runners, and yet it’s admitted that the government stopped tracking the firearms as soon as they reached the border, defeating the entire object of the mission.

    It would also account for the fact that the federal government failed to prevent Sinaloa importing tons of cocaine into the U.S.

    Back in April, Jesus Vicente Zambada Niebla, the “logistical coordinator” for the Sinaloa drug-trafficking gang that was responsible for purchasing the CIA torture jet that crashed with four tons on cocaine on board back in 2007 told the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in Chicago that he had been working as a U.S. government asset for years.

    A d v e r t i s e m e n t

    According to court transcripts, Niebla was allowed to import “multi-ton quantities of cocaine” into the U.S. as a result of his working relationship with the FBI, Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

    But the notion that Fast and Furious was solely an effort to isolate the Los Zetas cartel isn’t consistent with the fact that one of the gang’s kingpins recently told Mexican federal police that the group purchased its weapons directly from U.S. government officials inside America.

    “They are bought in the U.S. The buyers (on the U.S. side of the border) have said in the past that sometimes they would acquire them from the U.S. Government itself,” Rejón Aguilar told police.

    As we reported years ago, former DEA agent Cele Castillo has blown the whistle on how the US government controls the Los Zetas drug smuggling gang and uses it as the front group for their narco-empire.

    With the gang having first been trained at the infamous School of the Americas in Fort Benning, Georgia, Castillo affirms that Los Zetas are still working for the US government in protecting drug routes to keep the wheels of Wall Street well-oiled. Castillo has gone on the record to state that the commandos are working directly for the US government drug cartel in carrying out hits on rival drug smugglers who aren’t paying their cut.

    Fast and Furious may have served a dual purpose for the Obama administration.

    Some evidence indicates the program was a plot on behalf of the administration to discredit the second amendment. While the feds were selling guns to Mexican drug gangs, Obama was simultaneously blaming drug violence on the flow of guns from border states to Mexico.

    Even after the revelations surrounding the program became public, the ATF cited the trafficking of guns to Mexico as justification for a new regulation that has led to ATF intimidation of both gun sellers and purchasers, a policy which arrived months after President Obama told gun control advocate Sarah Brady that his administration was working “under the radar” to sneak attack the second amendment.

    During a March 30 meeting between Jim and Sarah Brady and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, at which Obama “dropped in,” the president reportedly told Brady, “I just want you to know that we are working on it (gun control)….We have to go through a few processes, but under the radar.”

    The quote appeared in an April 11 Washington Post story about Obama’s gun control czar Steve Croley.

    » Insider: CIA Orchestrated Operation Fast and Furious Alex Jones' Infowars: There's a war on for your mind!
    Last edited by kathyet; 02-02-2012 at 03:42 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member MontereySherry's Avatar
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    William this was on Fox News Website there is no writers name on the article.

  6. #6
    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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  7. #7
    Senior Member stevetheroofer's Avatar
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    somewhere near Mexico I reckon!
    Fox news played 20sec. of this video! And now it's gone, in the video Fox has Holder says he is bringing more agents to mexico to help with project "Gun runner" This video is from the "Mexican/US Arms Trafficking Conference Apr.4, 09" I searched for hours and hours for this whole video!

    Flashback: Holder on Weapons and Mexico - Fox News Video - Fox News
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  8. #8
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    Nov 2008
    The more I reflect on the hearing, the worse my head ache gets.
    There is some thing very evil going on.. This is big, and except for Labrador. There were too many deer in the headlight looks.
    And not from Holder.
    Holder just seemed so rehearsed. It really seems like he doesn't give a damn what anyone says or thinks.
    Only Labrador irritated him...and I ask why?
    Issa seemed to back off compared to past hearings and opinion on Holder. But not others in the the DOJ. Its like OK Eric, when you gonna give us a sacrificial lamb?

    P.S W, When you listen to the hearing. I believe Holder used the 1400 gun figure..

  9. #9
    Senior Member HAPPY2BME's Avatar
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    Feb 2005

    Eric Holder Tells Congress No Fast And Furious Cover-Up

    U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder denied the Justice Department was impeding a Republican probe into Operation Fast and Furious, the botched gun-trafficking investigation in Arizona tied to the 2010 killing of a Border Patrol agent, in Capitol Hill testimony Thursday.

    Answering questions about Fast and Furious before Congress for the sixth time in a year, Holder again told lawmakers he had not authorized the operation's controversial "gun-walking" tactics, which allowed illegal guns to fall into the hands of Mexican drug traffickers. He called those tactics "unacceptable" and "stupid," and said he has issued a directive banning their future use.

    Holder also said the Justice Department would consider complying with a congressional subpoena demanding tens of thousands of pages of sensitive documents related to the gun-trafficking probe. But he said many of those documents involved internal deliberations over the congressional inquiry and were legally exempt from disclosure. The Justice Department has already turned over more than 6,000 pages of documents to the House oversight committee investigating Fast and Furious.

    "There's no attempt at any kind of cover-up," Holder said. "We've shared huge amounts of information and we will continue to share huge amounts of information."

    Republicans subjected Holder to withering criticism during the nearly four-hour hearing, with some lawmakers calling for his resignation. Others accused him of deliberately blocking the GOP-led probe.

    "It appears we're being stonewalled," Dan Burton (R-Ind.) said while questioning Holder.

    Darrell Issa, chairman of the House panel, again drew attention to a letter provided to Congress early in the inquiry denying that agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives had allowed guns to "walk" and end up in the hands of criminals. The Justice Department later withdrew that letter and acknowledged it was incorrect.

    Holder said an inquiry by the Justice Department's inspector general prevents him from taking action against agency officials and staff responsible for wrongdoing or mistakes during Fast and Furious and the subsequent congressional probe.

    "I think we're pretty close to making some announcements," Holder said. "We will hold accountable people who were involved in this flawed investigation."

    Several Democrats, meanwhile, denounced the hearing as political theater and drew attention to the failure of Republicans to hold a single hearing on the broader problem of illegal gun trafficking from the U.S. into Mexico, which Mexican authorities blame for fueling drug violence.

    Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) noted that Republicans have long opposed passing federal laws that would target the trafficking of guns across the border.

    "Makes one wonder what this hearing is all about," Connolly said.

    Operation Fast and Furious was originally designed to trace guns purchased in large quantities in the U.S. by "straw buyers" and smuggled across the border by Mexican drug trafficking organizations. The operation, part of a larger effort to disrupt drug cartels, went awry and agents lost track of hundreds of guns.

    In December 2010, two guns tied to Fast and Furious were found at the scene of a shootout in Arizona that claimed the life of Brian Terry, a Border Patrol agent. A public controversy erupted after the guns' origin was revealed by an ATF whistleblower.

    The operation has been widely condemned by both Democrats and Republicans, and in Thursday's hearing Democrats on the oversight committee expressed their own outrage that guns had been allowed to fall into the hands of drug cartels.

    Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.), asked for Holder's opinion on whether top Justice Department officials should be required to sign off when federal agents willfully allow criminal activity in the course of an investigation. Lynch drew a parallel between Fast and Furious and the FBI's use of mobsters in Boston as confidential informants, despite their links to numerous killings.

    "Here, everyone escaped responsibility because of plausible deniability," Lynch said. "That's troubling to me. That scares the hell out of me."

    Holder said it was a "legitimate question," but urged caution. "We don't want to go too far in this sense," he said. "We have to have that ability. It's an extremely important law enforcement technique."

    Also Thursday, the family of Brian Terry filed a $25 million wrongful death claim against ATF, calling the agency "negligent" in its oversight of Fast and Furious. The lawsuit said Terry's death was the "natural consequence" of the agency's decision to allow illegal guns to fall into the hands of drug traffickers.

    Source: Eric Holder Tells Congress No Fast And Furious Cover-Up
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