New Fast and Furious Memo Backs Up Whistleblower Testimony
All ends are splitting up in the 10-month gun walking investigation. Fox News has obtained another piece of Fast and Furious evidence supporting the sworn testimony of several ATF whistleblowers. One thing for sure--this one's not going away despite big media's silent complicity in the cover-up.
A February 3, 2011 memo from ATF Agent Gary Styers addressed to top ATF personnel shores up statements made by his fellow agents to members of Congress. The memo also contradicts Assistant Attorney General Ron Weich's February 4 letter to Congress in which he asserts agents in charge had not "sanctioned or otherwise knowingly allowed the sale of assault weapons." Weich called allegations made by agents like John Dodson "false."
And two days day before Styer's memo surfaced Fox News reported on the courageous whistleblowers who continue to live in "a kind of purgatory."
Styers explained that Fast and Furious "divided and isolated agents," and the agent in charge called off surveillance. He detailed one instance in which agents monitoring a firearms transaction at a gas station were told they were too close to the scene -- while they repositioned, the buyer left the area without agents following.
"It is unheard of to have an active wiretap investigation without full time dedicated surveillance units on the ground," he wrote.
Styers wrote that his advice, and the advice of other agents, was "widely disregarded."
When asked about the new memo a DOJ spokesperson referred a Fox reporter to AG Holder's November testimony.
AG has been clear in his testimony and letters about when he learned and how he learned about the inappropriate tactics.
In November Holder said he learned of the operation a "couple of months" before the May 3 hearing where he testified he "heard about Fast and Furious over the last few weeks."
All of this 'clarity' is getting on Senator Charles Grassley's nerves. He wanted to know who in the DOJ okayed the Weich letter despite the fact it contained "inaccuracies" later admitted to by Holder.
It's clear that multiple highly placed officials in multiple agencies knew almost immediately of the connection between Operation Fast and Furious and Agent Terry's death," Grassley said. "Yet a month and a half after Agent Terry's death, Attorney General Holder was allegedly ignorant of the Fast and Furious connection."
Grassley said "documents that have come to light in my investigation" that suggest to him both Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano were not truthful when they told Congress they didn't know Fast and Furious guns were used kill Terry.
After Grassley spoke out on Thursday, the Department of Justice responded with an apology for the "hard tone" of the February 4 letter and a Friday night document dump.
The department turned over 1,364 pages of material after concluding "that we will make a rare exception to the department's recognized protocols and provide you with information related to how the inaccurate information came to be included in the letter," Deputy Attorney General James Cole wrote Grassley and Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, which is looking into the Obama administration's handling of Operation Fast and Furious.
The dump comes at the end of a long week for Holder. On Tuesday the AG became agitated when a Daily Caller reporter asked him about the congressmen demanding his resignation. He accused the online site of being "behind" the call for him to step down.
The timing of the dump just before Eric Holder's scheduled appearance at the House Judiciary Committee on December 8 suggests the attorney general may be entering a bargaining phase.
Read more M. Catharine Evans at Potter Williams Report