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This new fallout from the very controversial operation fast and furious the government program -- sent thousands of guns into Mexico right into the hands of Mexican drug cartels.
ATF officers were hoping the operation would lead them to the cartels.
But the plan backfired big time -- while those weapons be found at the scene of the murder of one of our US Border Patrol agents.
Agent Brian Terry.
Was gunned down in Arizona near the border -- two weapons found his body -- linked to this failed operation.
Operation fast and furious instantly became the focus of a congressional investigation tonight there are new developments are happening inside the Justice Department.
-- constant they're ice -- chairman of the house oversight and Government Reform Committee.
-- -- -- congressman and first the question who how high -- was fast and furious authorized.
Well it certainly goes much higher than the three individuals who were transferred or dismissed today.
And more importantly those higher up have not yet said how they're going to make sure this doesn't happen again and Greta if that second part that I think the American people have to be concerned with -- bad things happen but they shouldn't happen twice and right now we're afraid this same sort of a failed program could go on again.
What I signed up but this we're talking about Mexico the place where few people want to admit a wars going on right on our border with enormous consequences here in the United States and humanitarian issues as well in Mexico.
But the fact that this program you know it it seems it seems like a rather unorthodox way too.
To solve the problem is by sending gun sort of -- -- hopefully we can track them down later.
And so I mean it does mean it does matter who was the -- who was the one who pulled the trigger are who -- Green -- -- nice and simple trick but Green lighted it because that person's judgment may not be the wise estimated that person should be reassigned so I asked.
-- Greta you're exactly right well certainly it goes as high as Lanny brewer who thought it was a pretty good program just poorly executed.
And more importantly.
There is there are two triggers to look at yes there's the people who authorized it and we're going to get to the bottom of it.
But you know Brian -- apparently his his mother his siblings.
They've never gotten a fair recognition of who is responsible there -- people who were part of the chain.
Of those weapons that ultimately killed Brian Terry who have not been charged with any crime of this magnitude.
And that's one of the things that the US attorney Burke.
That we had a real problem with is it seemed like He orchestrated this program and that He didn't -- -- really do the kind of enforcement for those responsible.
And that's what we're hoping -- change under new US attorney.
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- No I don't think so I think that reassignment from a position in which He was at least partially responsible.
Is probably appropriate at the same time He has cooperating has been helpful and I -- never forget when He said.
Specifically about when He began seeing certain information that was withheld from ATF including him.
That had He known that.
He wouldn't have allowed it He was sick to his stomach when He read it.
And then He began trying to get this program shut down so I think we have to balance.
The the fact that we need a really good director at alcohol tobacco and fire we need one that's considered confirm not just an acting.
At the same time the US attorney being.
Let's just say allowed to resign.
We also think it's probably appropriate we need to have real independent eyes looking at how this happened.
But unfortunately one of the problems as some of the eyes.
That are watching this are high up in in Eric holder's office and had a lot to do with this happening.
I you -- and in your role do you intend to like move on ours is an ongoing investigation.
Well Greta there's two things we have to do to wrap up this investigation first of all we have to get to those responsible which means -- we need the cooperation.
Discovery we have been getting.
Almost everything we have an almost everything senator Grassley has we've gotten from third parties who have given to -- given to us.
Great real -- why why have why did not -- -- -- -- and they have the authority to ask we're not they supposed to turn over the Justice Department.
Well we've issued lawful subpoenas and they have.
Thwarted at best our subpoenas often giving us information -- so redacted it's just black pieces of Paper that used to be white before they put lines through it.
How -- openly that changes.
I you feeling came to our primary as it mean there's legitimate stuff that needs to be kept all the public domain there's also -- so what I you mean game there's -- legitimate stuff you feel you could you tell by looking at some of that.
Well this is one of the problems we have information that we've been given by third parties that then was redacted when.
The administration gave us their version of it we put them side by side we know we're being gained.
And we think the time for the game should be up.
Have you spoken to the attorney general are sent gone above Lanny brewer -- at -- -- like number the number two Echelon -- -- gone the attorney general on said.
You know let's stop let's -- -- let -- have what I can have so we can -- our oversight as is our jobs.
I have an arrangement to meet with the attorney general wanna get back to Washington and actually did there was a request for me to have a conference call with him.
Today or tomorrow night I chose to wait until we get back because I do think now we need to work together jointly.
To get this investigation wrapped up with some satisfactory conclusions that were not heading toward right now.
I -- those missing weapons -- the unaccounted for weapons.
Do we know where do we figure in the hands that cartel are they in the hands of just another are allowed the law are lawful citizens.
Now though there in the hands of the cartel.
We have confidential sources that have shown us.
Why the administration's.
Knew these weapons were.
Go into the cartels not mostly not may be.
But virtually all of them they knew that in the chain and that's one of the reasons that we can't give up of this investigation is.
We know what they're not telling us and we really need to have the cooperation that we don't yet have.
Certainly for Brian Terry's family they need to know this can never happen again.
And also for those who are observing -- reassigned and being scapegoated -- -- we need that for them to this that's not right if indeed that's happening to them.
Cashman thank you sir thank you.
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