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Of the many scandals associated with the Obama administration, two stand out above the rest: the Fast and Furious gun-running scandal and the current disinformation campaign surrounding the assassination of four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, in Benghazi, Libya. The president and his minions, aided by media that are “all in” with respect to getting Obama re-elected, have managed to tamp down most of the damming information about the Fast and Furious scandal. They also remain committed to putting out enough conflicting information about the Benghazi scandal that Americans become confused about what actually happened and perhaps lose interest as a result. And in light of the seriousness of these debacles, individuals willing to hold the administration to account seem to be in short supply.
It is critical to remember that these are not the garden variety, “they said-we said” types of scandals that have arisen in past administrations. As a result of the attack in Benghazi and the running of guns into Mexico people were murdered. Hundreds of people. With respect to Fast and Furious, Univision, apparently one of the few media organizations with an ounce of integrity, revealed the scope of such carnage. They have identified several of the massacres committed using guns “walked” into Mexico, including the killing of 16 young people attending a party in a residential area of Ciudad Juárez in January of 2010.
Last Friday, the network released a promo of their efforts. “Univision News’ Investigative Unit was also able to identify additional guns that escaped the control of ATF agents and were used in different types of crimes throughout Mexico,” the network revealed. “Furthermore, some of these guns–none of which were reported by congressional investigators–were put in the hands of drug traffickers in Honduras, Puerto Rico, and Colombia. A person familiar with the recent congressional hearings called Univision’s findings ‘the holy grail’ that Congress had been searching for.”
Yet while Congress has been searching, the Obama administration has been stonewalling. Despite more than a year’s worth of Congressional investigations conducted by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and the Senate Judiciary Committee–both of which were precipitated by the murder of American Border Agent Brian Terry–the essential questions of who knew what and when, and what purpose the program was meant to serve, remain unanswered.
An internal investigation conducted by the Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG)–essentially the DOJ investigating itself–was trumpeted by the mainstream media as the definitive report on the matter. Yet the facts say otherwise. Kevin O’Reilly, one of the key players the IG sought out, “declined through his personal counsel our request for an interview.” Furthermore, the White House refused to produce internal documents related to the investigation, claiming such documents were “beyond the purview” of the inspector general. CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson, one of the few reporters willing to follow this scandal wherever it leads, reveals just how far the White House was willing to go to avoid congressional threats to subpoena O’Reilly. “Just days after [lead ATF official on the case Special Agent in Charge Bill] Newell testified to Congress on July 26, 2011 that he’d shared information with O’Reilly, whom he described as a long time friend, O’Reilly was transferred to Iraq and not available for questioning,” writes Attkisson.
Add President Obama’s assertion of executive privilege to the mix, which allowed Eric Holder to thumb his nose at congressional investigators’ subpoenas, along with the continuing refusal of the DOJ to cooperate (despite Holder being found in contempt of Congress), and the stunning level of administration callousness is clear. In short, the preservation of bureaucratic careers trumps a genuine investigation into hundreds of murders.
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