Yesterday, Breitbart.com revealed exclusive video of then-U.S. Attorney Eric Holder speaking to the Woman’s National Democratic Club, stating that he wanted to “brainwash” people against gun ownership.
The video reveals Attorney General Holder’s early, consistent, and strident enthusiasm for gun control legislation. He wanted schools to talk about anti-gun propaganda “every day, every school, and every level."
Operation Fast and Furious -- in which Holder’s Department of Justice (DOJ) smuggled guns illegally to Mexican drug cartels -- could finally have provided Holder the material for that anti-gun curriculum.
On December 7, 2011, CBS News investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson (who is the only one in the mainstream media faithfully reporting this story) shared documents proving that the motive behind Operation Fast & Furious was to implement harsher gun regulations.
Ms. Attkisson reported that Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) officials within the DOJ discussed using the illegal gun sales to justify “Demand Letter 3,” which would require some gun shops to report the sales of multiple rifles or long guns.
Each new revelation pushes Operation Fast and Furious up the chain of command and provides more evidence that it was to be used for more gun control.
Here’s a review of what we know:
ATF Agent John Dodson sat down with Ms. Attkisson on March 3, 2011. He told Ms. Attkisson he had been assigned to Phoenix in 2010 and that he’d been involved in Operation Fast and Furious every single day since he arrived.
Agent Dodson had been assured that the “gun walking” strategy had been approved all the way up to the Department of Justice. That didn’t calm Agent Dodson and others. There was so much opposition that an ATF supervisor sent out an email that said, “Whether you care or not, people of rank and authority at HQ are paying close attention to this case…we are doing what they envisioned.”
A few weeks later, on March 25, Ms. Attkisson released another report based on information from whistleblower Darren Gil, lead ATF official in Mexico at the time. She asked the most crucial question: who knew and how high up? She mentioned an interview President Obama had given with Univision, in which he claimed he or Mr. Holder had authorized it. However, Agent Gil’s interview contradicted President Obama’s statement about Mr. Holder.
What is really interesting is that Agent Gil and his counterparts in Mexico did not have any knowledge about Operation Fast and Furious--nor did those in charge want Agent Gil or anyone else in Mexico to know. Ms. Attkisson reported, “Gil says his supervisor at ATF’s Washington D.C. headquarters told him point-blank the operation was approved even higher than ATF Director Kenneth Melson,” right up to senior levels of DOJ.
Noting that bringing weapons illegally into Mexico could amount to an act of war, Gil explained that by ATF agents in Mexico had been put in danger: "They're leaving my guys out in Mexico alone, and they're not doing the right thing."
More damning evidence was presented at a congressional hearing in June 2011, at which emails were revealed showing that Melson had been briefed weekly about Operation Fast and Furious. He had also watched a live video stream of straw purchases in Arizona gun shops intended for the operation. Other emails indicated that a meeting had been held at DOJ consisting of senior officials from the FBI, DEA, and ATF, as well as U.S. Attorneys for all southwestern states, among others.
As the investigation unfolded, the government kept trying to pin the blame on the gun dealers, but the emails and testimony would not let them. The gun dealers had been emailing the ATF throughout Operation Fast and Furious to air their concerns and to say they were uncomfortable with their involvement. The ATF kept telling them that they would not be blamed. That promise was not kept.
Now why would the government try to blame the gun dealers? Was it attempting to create a pretext for more gun control laws?
Ms. Attkisson seemed to confirm that motive in her December 7 report. In his follow-up article, Matthew Boyle at The Daily Caller recalled a quote from Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) at a November 15 press conference:
The attitude that [Holder] took toward the young man who was killed … was troubling,” Walsh said, during a Nov. 15 press conference, referring to slain U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry [killed with weapons smuggled during Operation Fast and Furious]. “And, then, there’s this undercurrent of his call -- his advocacy -- for more gun control, a problem of our guns going south of the border when our own government, led by him, was complicit in that. He needs to be held accountable.
Several leading Democrats continued to press for gun control. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) suggested the government use Fast & Furious as an example of why there should be tighter gun control laws during the November 1, 2011 testimony of Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer. She blamed lax gun laws for Fast & Furious, not the ATF. She would not explain to The Daily Caller how more gun control laws would have prevented the ATF from allowing guns to walk across the border.
Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) noticed that throughout the congressional hearings, it had become more evident the whole point of Operation Fast and Furious had been gun control. He reminded The Daily Caller that Mr. Holder had testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that if there had been better gun laws, the operation’s tragic outcome would not have happened.
Yesterday, Mr. Boyle reached out to DOJ spokesperson Tracy Schmaler for a comment on the video. She has not answered. He also asked the White House for a comment on whether President Obama agrees with Mr. Holder about the need to “brainwash” Americans about guns. They have not answered, either, according to Mr. Boyle.
Mr. Boyle also reports how Operation Fast and Furious already has had an affect on gun control laws. “Statistics collected from the program eventually formed the backbone of that new long-gun reporting rule, which the administration implemented after Fast and Furious became a national scandal,” Mr. Boyle reports. “The rule was upheld in a January ruling from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.”
The Department of Justice still has to give the oversight committee chaired by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) thousands of documents pertaining to Operation Fast and Furious. Now, with Breitbart.com’s new video, it really makes one wonder what Holder, DOJ, and Obama are hiding.