Late Friday, the White House turned over new documents in the Congressional investigation into the ATF “Fast and Furious” gunwalking scandal.
The documents show extensive communications between then-ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office Bill Newell – who led Fast and Furious – and then-White House National Security Staffer Kevin O’Reilly. Emails indicate the two also spoke on the phone. Such detailed, direct communications between a local ATF manager in Phoenix and a White House national security staffer has raised interest among Congressional investigators looking into Fast and Furious. Newell has said he and O’Reilly are long time friends.
ATF agents say that in Fast and Furious, their agency allowed thousands of assault rifles and other weapons to be sold to suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels. At least two of the guns turned up at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry last December.
The email exchanges span a little over a month last summer. They discuss ATF’s gun trafficking efforts along the border including the controversial Fast and Furious case, though not by name. The emails to and from O’Reilly indicate more than just a passing interest in the Phoenix office’s gun trafficking cases. They do not mention specific tactics such as “letting guns walk.”
[…]Among the documents produced: an email in which ATF’s Newell sent the White House’s O’Reilly an “arrow chart reflecting the ultimate destination of firearms we intercepted and/or where the guns ended up.” The chart shows arrows leading from Arizona to destinations all over Mexico.
[…]Congressional investigators for Republicans Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) have asked to interview O’Reilly by September 30. But the Administration informed them that O’Reilly is on assignment for the State Department in Iraq and unavailable.
Director Blue has posted some of the e-mails featuring ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office William D. Newell, Obama’s homeland security adviser John Brennan and then-White House National Security Staffer Kevin M. O’Reilly.
It’s no longer a question of whether Eric Holder knew; it’s whether President Obama knew and approved of Operation Fast and Furious. The rogue ATF operation sent thousands of military-grade weapons to Mexican drug cartels. And at least two of the weapons were discovered at the scene of last December’s killing of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.
When will the rest of the mainstream media (non-CBS) start to cover this story? Or are they afraid to? Is this too big for them to cover? Are they afraid of the White House exerting pressure on them?
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