By William L. Garvin
“You got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away and know when to run.” Kenny Rogers, “The Gambler”
When employees get in trouble and are about to be disciplined, some request to resign in lieu of being disciplined. Some human resource managers allow this in order to avoid the costs of appeals and litigation. The quid pro quo for the employee is the HR manager promises to “seal” the personnel records. Any competent background investigator for law enforcement or military security clearances immediately sees this as a “red flag” and knows to start digging in order to find out what’s really going on. After all, how many people would really say “gee, I have so many awards, medals, commendations and honors that I should probably seal my records in order not to be unfair to my competitors or bias the investigation.”
The current case of “executive privilege” may be cut out of the same deceitful bolt of cloth. Since the President has declared the privilege, it now raises the question as to what involvement and/or knowledge he had of the “Fast and Furious” operation. Did this “hands on” president (who personally manages the “Kill List”) have the same level of operational involvement with the Department of Justice gun walking? After Eric Holder stonewalled the Congressional oversight committee for a year and a half, this sudden presidential intervention has the appearance of impropriety and raises the spectre of a cover up.
Keep in mind that during the Nixon administration, Watergate was a third-rate burglary of a Democrat office. It was the cover up that was much worse than the crime and brought down a sitting president. In the present “Fast and Furious” imbroglio, that cannot be said. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent Jaime Zapata and Border Patrol agent Brian Terry have both been killed as well as many Mexican citizens. “I would be remiss if I didn’t mention, as the Attorney General in Mexico is so concerned, she’s made the point that at least 200 Mexicans have been killed with these weapons and probably countless more,” said Congressman Darrel Issa. This is quite probable as it’s estimated that DOJ allowed 2500 weapons to “walk” into Mexico and only 600 have been recovered. Sadly, two AK-47s from the operation were recovered at the site of Agent Terry’s murder.
Marisela Morales, Mexico's Attorney General, told The LA Times that she first learned about “Fast and Furious” from news reports. She added that no U.S. officials have ever briefed her on the operation or apologized. "At no time did we know or were we made aware that there might have been arms trafficking permitted," said AG Morales, Mexico's highest-ranking law enforcement official. "In no way would we have allowed it, because it is an attack on the safety of Mexicans."
In a similar vein, the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), which represents all 17,000 “nonsupervisory agents” of the Border Patrol, has called for the resignation of AG Holder for his part in the failed gunrunning operation. According to the Washington Times, Council President George E. McCubbin III said the AG’s handling of the case was “a slap in the face to all Border Patrol agents who serve this country.” He also said Holder has failed to provide any leadership within his department. “It is time for AG Eric Holder to show the least shred of responsibility and leadership and resign his post. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry deserves nothing less.” McCubbin also corroborated AG Morales when he noted that a Border Patrol agent is prohibited crossing into Mexico without approval from U.S. and Mexican government agencies. From his viewpoint, there is no way “Fast and Furious” could be carried out without knowledge and direct approval from the Justice Department and the Obama Administration.
There is no reason to believe that the DOJ files contain anything other than evidence of operational incompetence. Ordering private citizens to violate the law and sell weapons illegally, ordering law enforcement personnel to ignore their oaths and training and turn weapons over to Mexican cartels without even a tracking device can only be seen as gross negligence. This is just the latest in a long litany of embarrassments. Mr. Holder, it’s time for you to fold ‘em. And please don’t walk away, it’s time for you to run!