Saturday, March 12, 2011


Gunwalker links for this morning

Is it gun shops, gun shows or government that is ‘chief source of weapons?'

Brady Campaign says permanent BATFE director would have stopped 'Gunwalker'


"This is a serious violation of international law. What happens if next time they need to introduce trained assassins or nuclear weapons?"

"We who are about to be completely discredited salute you!"

"Mexico angry over US weapons operation."

MEXICO CITY, March 11 (UPI) -- A Mexican lawmaker claims at least 150 countrymen were killed or wounded by guns purchased through an undercover U.S. drug and weapons operation.

Humberto Benitez Trevino, a member of Mexico's Chamber of Deputies, said the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives program called Operation Fast and Furious was responsible and he has called for an investigation, The Los Angeles Times reported.

"We have 150 cases of injuries and homicides with arms that were smuggled and passed illegally into our country," Benitez said. "This was an undercover program that wasn't properly controlled."

The ATF acknowledged at least 195 weapons sold in Arizona under the program were recovered in Mexico.

Mexican lawmakers want to know if Mexican authorities were aware of the U.S. operation.

"This is a serious violation of international law," said Carlos Ramirez Marin, president of the Chamber of Deputies. "What happens if next time they need to introduce trained assassins or nuclear weapons?"

Hillary's dilemma is this: If this scandal blows out into the open worse than it already has and moves into the "under oath" phase -- and it certainly has every chance of doing so -- does she really want to sink with Obama's S.S. Gunwalker? Or does she seize the moment, slug Obama from behind, jump ship and run for president next year?

Much rests on her calculation of self interest.

Project Gunwalker and "The Banality of Evil": Fireman Friendly's secret life as a killer arsonist. The bureaucratic murderers with clean hands.

'If you're going to make an omelette, you've got to break some eggs.' -- ATF manager to Special Agent John Dodson, when he objected to letting guns "walk" in "Fast and Furious."

Georgia Firefighter Marvin Calvin Chase, arrested for more than 30 arsons at $22 per paycheck. He could have had a great career in the ATF as a supervisor with Fast and Furious. The moral logic, at least, is the same.

Banality of evil is a phrase coined by Hannah Arendt and incorporated in the title of her 1963 work Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil. It describes the thesis that the great evils in history generally, and the Holocaust in particular, were not executed by fanatics or sociopaths, but rather by ordinary people who accepted the premises of their state and therefore participated with the view that their actions were normal. -- Wikipedia.

The Christian Science Monitor writes in an article entitled "Mexico lawmakers livid over US 'Operation Fast and Furious'":

How 'Fast and Furious' backfired

A Phoenix-based operation, Fast and Furious backfired when two of the weapons in the program were found at the scene of a border shootout that killed US Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in December. ATF whistleblowers and some US congressmen kicked up a fuss over a program they feared would aid cartels in killing innocent people. And last month, a gun smuggled from the US was used in the killing of US Special Agent Jamie Zapata outside Mexico City, although it has not been determined that the gun was part of Fast and Furious.

As a result, last week the ATF announced a review of its firearms trafficking strategies.




Remember one thing -- apart from the fact that it was compromised by the ATF whistleblowers, "FAST AND FURIOUS" WORKED AS INTENDED. Hell, they're still trying to make it work, even now when the whole thing has been exposed as Fireman Friendly's secret life as a killer arsonist.

As explained by my experienced friend here, it was a cynical, bloody-minded attempt to subvert the Second Amendment, executed flawlessly with depraved indifference to the human cost by its architects -- the bureaucratic murderers with clean hands of the ATF and Department of Justice.

And who are these killers for power? Who are these people that representatives of the Mexican government now rightfully wish to extradite for trial on charges of gun smuggling and accessory to murder?

We don't know for sure, yet. Not all of them. But we are starting to get an idea or two.

Here's the latest representative of what Hannah Arendt called "the banality of evil" on the ground in Arizona:

William "Gunwalker Bill" Newell, ATF SAC in charge of the Phoenix office, now wanted by the government of Mexico.

Here's his boss, Acting ATF Director Kenneth Melson. There were those who used to think that he was the "honest piano player in the whorehouse," a tool of the string-pullers in the Chief Counsel's Office. Turns out he was just as guilty of depraved indifference to multiple murder in Mexico as all the rest of them.

Here's Melson's boss, Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer, and Breuer's boss, Attorney General Eric Holder.

All of these people crafted, executed or approved the "Fast and Furious" conspiracy and subsequent cover-up.

Now you know what bureaucratic murderers with clean hands look like.

The banality of evil, indeed.

Mike Vanderboegh
The alleged leader of a merry band of Three Percenters.

Some Gunwalker stories

"NRA calls for swift hearings on gun trafficking at border," a story less significant for what it says than where it is -- in The Hill, a newspaper read by every politician's staffer on Capitol Hill.

"Motive behind 'Project Gunwalker' needs closer look." Kurt Hofmann's column bears the alternate title, "Did BATFE try the Underpants Gnomes' approach to 'War on Drugs'?"

The Christian Science Monitor reports "Mexico lawmakers livid over US 'Operation Fast and Furious'"

For those of you who thought the Krauthammer quote was tongue-in-cheek. It wasn't. Never trust a neo-con.

Many thanks to the several Irregulars who forwarded this at my request.

Charles Krauthammer "Disarm the Citizenry. But not yet. " Washington Post, Apr. 5, 1996

In an election year you expect Washington to be full of phony arguments. But even a cynic must marvel at the all-round phoniness of the debate over repeal of the assault weapons ban. Both sides are blowing smoke.

The claim of the advocates that banning these 19 types of "assault weapons" will reduce the crime rate is laughable. (The term itself is priceless: What are all the other guns in America's home arsenal? Encounter weapons? Crime-en\abling devices?) Dozens of other weapons, the functional equivalent of these "assault weapons," were left off the list and are perfect substitutes for anyone bent on mayhem.

On the other side you have Rep. Gerald Solomon (R-N.Y.) demanding in trembling fury that the ban be repealed because his wife, alone in upstate New York, needs protection. Well, okay. But must it be an AK-47? Does, say, a .44 magnum -- easier to carry, by the way -- not suffice for issuing a credible, "Go ahead, make my day"?
In fact, the assault weapons ban will have no significant effect either on the crime rate or on personal security. Nonetheless, it is a good idea, though for reasons its proponents dare not enunciate. I am not up for reelection. So let me elaborate the real logic of the ban:

It is simply crazy for a country as modern, industrial, advanced and now crowded as the United States to carry on its frontier infatuation with guns. Yes, we are a young country, but the frontier has been closed for 100 years. In 1992, there were 13,220 handgun murders in the United States. Canada (an equally young country, one might note) had 128; Britain, 33.

Ultimately, a civilized society must disarm its citizenry if it is to have a modicum of domestic tranquillity of the kind enjoyed in sister democracies like Canada and Britain. Given the frontier history and individualist ideology of the United States, however, this will not come easily. It certainly cannot be done radically. It will probably take one, maybe two generations. It might be 50 years before the United States gets to where Britain is today.

Passing a law like the assault weapons ban is a symbolic -- purely symbolic -- move in that direction. Its only real justification is not to reduce crime but to desensitize the public to the regulation of weapons in preparation for their ultimate confiscation. Its purpose is to spark debate, highlight the issue, make the case that the arms race between criminals and citizens is as dangerous as it is pointless.

De-escalation begins with a change in mentality. And that change in mentality starts with the symbolic yielding of certain types of weapons. The real steps, like the banning of handguns, will never occur unless this one is taken first, and even then not for decades.

What needs to happen before this change in mentality can occur? What must occur first -- and this is where liberals are fighting the gun control issue from the wrong end -- is a decrease in crime. So long as crime is ubiquitous, so long as Americans cannot entrust their personal safety to the authorities, they will never agree to disarm. There will be no gun control before there is real crime control.

True, part of the reason for the high crime rate is the ubiquity of guns -- which makes the argument circular and a solution seem impossible. But gun control advocates ignore other, egregious encouragements to crime at their peril. The lack of swift and certain retribution, for example. Judges like Harold Baer in New York, for whom four men loading $4 million worth of drugs into the trunk of a car at 5 in the morning, then running away from police, is insufficient cause for a search. Judg\es who need the president himself to yell and scream and threaten before reversing a decision to let serious criminality go unprosecuted.

In the United States, 4 (!) percent of all robberies result in time served. Tell your stickup man, "You can go to jail for this," and he can correctly respond, "25 to 1 says I don't." So long as both the law-abiding population and the criminal classes doubt that serious crime leads to serious punishment, attempts at serious gun control will prove futile.

Yes, Sarah Brady is doing God's work. Yes, in the end America must follow the way of other democracies and disarm. But there is not the slightest chance that it will occur until liberals join in the other fights to reduce the incidence of and increase the penalties for crime. Only then will there be a public receptive to the idea of real gun control. The passionate resistance to even the phony gun control of the assault weapons ban shows how far we have to go.

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