Chief Counsel's Office career prospects will be fluttering to earth as nuclear ash.
CORRECTION: The language of the original paragraph below said this: "the Phoenix SAC and ASAC were responsible for arranging the smuggling of semi-auto rifles into Mexico." This was incorrect and my fault entirely. I have changed it below to the correct word, which was "allowed." There is distinct difference between the two, although giving a wink and a nod to others to break the law when you are sworn to uphold it, for your own venal and agenda-driven self-interest is not far from functionally "arranging" the same thing. I'm not sure, for instance, that the family of Brian Terry would appreciate the difference.
Remember this story from the 28th of December? "Border Patrol agent killed with ATF-smuggled AR? Some ATF agents seem to think so."
The DOJ computers have been hitting this story big-time the last two days. Usually they out-click to CUATF.org.
Well, here's what a solid source within ATF says about this story this morning:
"It's true. Pure fact verified. Ongoing inv(estigation) I can't discuss."
Now, to be careful, let's assume that this confirmation applies only to what would be knowledge to the ATF -- that the Phoenix SAC and ASAC were responsible for allowing the smuggling of semi-auto rifles into Mexico to boost the statistics to justify Operation Gunrunner. I do know that "mainstream" reporters are working on the mysterious circumstances of the death of Border Patrol officer Brian A. Terry and getting close to verifying the rumor posted on CleanUpATF.org that he was killed with one of the "walked" weapons.
If this story makes it to the cable news cycle, there is no possibility that ATF can avoid the antiseptic qualities of sunlight on all of their criminal acts. All credit should go to the agents of CUATF who broke this story and to David Codrea who has shoved the story along and into a wider audience.
PS: In a related development, the CUATF site was apparently hacked last night.