22 January, 2011

Did U.S. agency smuggle guns to Mexico to justify its budget?

Did U.S. agency smuggle guns to Mexico to justify its budget?

Posted: January 22, 2011
12:45 am Eastern
© 2011

The death of a U.S. Border Patrol agent north of Nogales, Ariz., on December 14, 2010 might turn out to be the death knell for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, or ATF.

Allegations have surfaced suggesting that one of the guns used by Mexican bandits during the firefight in which Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed might have been smuggled into Mexico with the knowing assistance of ATF officials. If these allegations prove to be true, it is quite possible that the long troubled agency could be dismantled. Even if there proves to be no connection with Agent Terry's death, the scrutiny generated by an investigation could crash the agency.

There are actually four separate but connected accusations against ATF officials: First, that they intentionally arranged to have hundreds of firearms "walked" across the U.S. border into Mexico. Second, that they instructed U.S. gun dealers to proceed with questionable and illegal sales of firearms to suspected gunrunners. Third, that they intentionally withheld information about U.S.-sanctioned gun smuggling from the Mexican government. Fourth, that one of the guns ATF allowed or helped to be smuggled into Mexico was involved in the death of Agent Terry.
As Codrea said: "We have liftoff."


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