Terry’s death was the last straw for Dodson. He said he tried to contact ATF headquarters, ATF’s chief counsel, the ATF ethics section and the Justice Department’s Office of the Inspector General.
When he didn’t get an immediate response, he and other agents reached out to Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), the ranking minority member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
At the same time, word was leaking out to bloggers on gun rights. They began posting that there was a dark side to the still-unpublicized Fast and Furious.
On Dec. 22, an item appeared on cleanupatf.org, founded by dissident ATF agents. The post said that an ATF official in Phoenix “approved more than 500 AR-15 type rifles” to be “walked” to Mexico. Some bloggers speculated that ATF was encouraging the smuggling to boost the numbers of U.S. weapons recovered in Mexico to gain support for an assault-weapons ban.
‘A blatant lie’
The public first learned about Fast and Furious in late January 2011 when U.S. Attorney Burke called a news conference in Phoenix to announce a 53-count indictment involving 20 suspects. The indictment alleged that from September 2009 to December 2010, the suspects bought hundreds of firearms to be illegally exported to Mexico.
To Newell, who was also at the news conference, Fast and Furious was a “phenomenal case,” the largest-ever Mexican gun trafficking investigation, a direct answer to the call to stem the flow of firearms south of the border.
A local reporter asked Newell about the rumors that ATF agents had purposely allowed firearms to enter Mexico.
“Hell, no!” he answered. Newell said that they could not follow everyone and that sometimes suspects would elude agents, which could result in guns getting into Mexico.
Peter Forcelli, an ATF group supervisor in the Phoenix office, watched the news conference on television. “I was appalled,” he later testified to Congress. “Because it was a blatant lie.”
Monday, July 25, 2011
WaPo actually runs a story on Gunwalker and includes links to War on Guns and Sipsey Street. Does Darth Breuer know?
"U.S. anti-gunrunning effort turns fatally wrong."