Congressman says unlikely Holder did not know about Operation Fast and Furious

by Jack Minor
Lawmakers from both houses, investigating Operation Fast and Furious, fired off a terse and angry letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, accusing him of issuing “false denials” and “distorting the truth.”
On Independence Day, acting ATF head, Kenneth Melson, testified before Congress with his own attorney present. Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, said Melson chose July 4 to show the public he was appearing voluntarily and on his own time.
Melson was scheduled to appear before Congress July 13, with DOJ and ATF lawyers present. According to Issa, Melson was never told by the justice department that he was able to attend a voluntary interview with his own lawyer present.
During the interview, Melson said when he first learned of the operation, he was, “sick to my stomach.” He went on to say that he moved to reassign every manager involved in Fast and Furious; however, he was not allowed to tell Congress of the reason for the reassignments.
Following Melson’s testimony, Issa and Sen. Charles Grassley, ranking member of the Committee on the Judiciary, fired off a five page letter to Holder.
Grassley and Issa said in the letter, “If his account is accurate, then ATF leadership appears to have been effectively muzzled while the DOJ sent over false denials and buried its head in the sand. That approach distorted the truth and obstructed our investigation.” It went on to say, “The Department’s inability or unwillingness to be more forthcoming served to conceal critical information that we are now learning about the involvement of other agencies, including the DEA and the FBI.”
Holder’s office responded with a letter, saying, “We reject entirely any suggestion that our extraordinary efforts have been designed to limit rather than facilitate the committee’s access to information.”
Operation Fast and Furious involved government officials permitting straw purchases to members of Mexican drug cartels in an attempt to identify higher-ups in the organizations. Over 2,000 guns were sold and they have been linked to the death of at least two Americans, border patrol agent, Brian Terry, and ICE agent, Jaime Zapata. Last week, ABC News reported Fast and Furious weapons were used in several crimes in Arizona.
The “higher-ups” authorities who were attempting to identify with the operation were already known to other agencies and may even have been paid as informants. Melson said other agencies, including the FBI and Drug Enforcement Agency, kept them in the dark. If they would have informed the ATF it could have had a material impact on the Fast and Furious investigation as far back as late 2009 or early 2010.
Appearing on the Hannity show, Issa said, unlike members of the justice department, Melson was very cooperative and answered all of the questions asked.
“His attorney never, never, never asked him to stop or have extensive consultation. He simply answered the question with his counsel present.” Issa continued, “That’s the opposite of what we’ve had in the previous interviews” with justice department officials with their attorneys present. “Essentially, they’re trying to limit our discovery; they’re trying to counsel their people to only give us certain things.”
Holder has repeatedly said that he only became aware of Operation Fast and Furious a few weeks before being asked to testify before Congress. Issa told Hannity he found it hard to believe Holder’s claim. “It’s almost impossible to believe that everyone, including CBS news, big newspapers and Fox had already reported on Fast and Furious and yet Eric Holder still didn’t know anything about it.”
Former Congressman Tom Tancredo, who served during the Reagan administration, told the Gazette that while it is possible Obama knew nothing about the operation, Holder would have had to have known about it. “It is impossible to think that Eric holder did not know about it. It is likewise unlikely and almost impossible that Janet Napolitano did not know” , Tancredo said.
Lawmakers warned Holder against forcing Melson to resign or taking any other action against him. Melson is currently serving as an interim director of the ATF, which is a temporary job.
“Given his testimony, unless a permanent director is confirmed, it would be inappropriate for the Justice Department to take action against him that could have the effect of intimidating others who might want to provide additional information to the Committees.”
The letter continued, “Knowing what we know so far, we believe it would be inappropriate to make Mr. Melson the fall guy in an attempt to prevent further congressional oversight.”
Mexican lawmakers have said they will press for the extradition of any American officials who authorized and ran the operation.
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7 Responses to Congressman says unlikely Holder did not know about Operation Fast and Furious

  1. BobbyT7 says:

    Part of the funding for this operation was a $10,000,000.00 installment from the president’s stimulus funds. In total, the operation supposedly cost us taxpayers $83,000,000.00.

    Unfortunately I can’t tell you the entire future costs, but I can tell you that both American and Mexican victims of this atrocious operation can and will file “Bivens” civil law suits in U.S. federal courts, which will be mostly settled out of court, because the governments behavior is so appalling in this matter.

    The cost in lives, which is the most difficult part, we won’t know for years to come. Agents Brian Terry and Jaime Zapata are the first of Americans.

    The president has no choice, but to appoint a special prosecutor to unravel this stinking mess. And the prosecutor better hire retired federal agents and/or county, state or city detectives.

  2. Joseph Zrnchik, MAJ (Ret.) says:

    Proof Holder committed perjury regarding his testimony for Operation Fast and Furious

  3. of course he knew….. the question should be, ‘what are they going to do about it?’…..

  4. heather says:

    Take him to trial, and let Mexico trial him too. What else do you do when someone brakes the law? Thats what it’s for, now use the system!

  5. TheDogg says:

    I wonder if Issa was worried and concerned about the 9/11 investigation being a cover up and fraud. There was more cover-up, false testimony, lies, distortions, and outright traitorism than in any event in U.S. history. Oh, and 3000 americans were killed during that little false flag operation. Both Dems and Repubs and on same team. don’t you people get it? Bush, Obama, whoever. They all play for same side. Of course Holder and Napolitano and Obama knew. They set it up!!! To many sheep out there. Are you one of them?

  6. lc says:

    Proof is in this 2009 video of Deputy Atty. Gen. and Janet Napalitano:

    They all knew!

  7. js says:


    From: Webmaster
    XXX, XXX XX, 2009 at 9:49 AM
    Thank you for your e-mail inquiry to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

    However, you need to contact the FBI regarding your issue. ATF enforces federal criminal laws dealing with firearms, explosives, arson and alcohol and tobacco smuggling.
    ATF Public Affairs Division


    From: {MY NAME}
    Date: XXX, XXX XX, 2009 at 2:14 PM
    To: “” , “” , “” , XXXXXXXXX@XXXXXXXXX.COM

    Does ATF cover violent crimes as to illicit use radioactive materials for Nuclear terrorism?

    Identified in UK conducting use Radiological dispersal devices for Cyber terrorism {EW/ EA/ RI}/ Cyber espionage {RW/ DW/ IW, COMPINT}; Civil/ Constitutional/ Human rights violations.

    Use Radiological dispersal devices in viol US Atomic Energy Act 1954 by identified in UK who is former UK military Signals; leading to incident Acts terrorism transcending national boundaries by wireless {Radiological dispersal device/ facilitated by Space based platforms as a WMD}..

    Former NYS Attorney facilitating same resulting in property theft/ theft legal firearms. Stolen firearms not recovered.

    Identified in UK conducting Signals/ Image processing withholds magnetic/ Digital evidence of those conducting Civil conspiracy/ Color of law violations; Conspiracy to commit Acts terrorism, Facilitation Acts terrorism/ Acts espionage from the UK by the Falsification of investigations, E discoveries/ Statements/ Filing false instruments.

    Accessories after the fact Acts terrorism/ Acts espionage defrauding the USMS/ CIA/ FBI/ DoD {Conspiracy to commit offense or to defraud the United States


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