Epic Fail: Operation Fast and Furious

From Heritage Foundation, by Tierra Warren, August 24, 2011 – Operation Fast and Furious was an attempt by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agency to sell and trace thousands of firearms to “straw buyers” in Mexico. The idea was that these weapons would show up at crime scenes in Mexico thus enabling law enforcement on both sides of the border to link drug cartels to specific criminal acts.
However, many of the guns were lost in the process and are showing up in crime scenes across the U.S. and Mexico. One is even linked to the murder of a Border Patrol agent.
As was pointed out in a House oversight committee hearing, the U.S. government essentially engineered the flow of illegal weapons from the United States directly into the hands of Mexican drug cartels without interception or interdiction.
As The Heritage Foundation’s Lachlin Markey explains,

Not only were guns from the operation discovered at the scene of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry’s murder, but an additional 57 Fast and Furious firearms were recovered at 11 different violent crime scenes in the American Southwest. The gunwalking tactic – which ATF officials have denied andadmitted to, sometimes in the span of only a few minutes – was devised as a means to learn how cartels illegally obtained firearms from the United States. But the vast majority of the roughly 1,500 guns ATF estimates were sold to “straw buyers” were not tracked by agency officials. Many of those guns did not even make it back to the cartels in Mexico, but were instead sold or handed off to operatives in the United States.

While lives are being on lost on this side of the border, not one cartelist has been arrested as a result of this operation. What are your thoughts on the botched operation? Be sure to share your comments on MyHeritage.

Share Your Thoughts on 9/11 – Submit A Video

On September 11, 2001, terrorists attacked the United States of America. In the span of just one morning, Americans were given a dramatic reminder of our vulnerabilities, our common enemies, and—most of all—the exceptional strength and resiliency of the American people.

It was a day that we—as a nation—pledged to never forget. It’s in that spirit, as we prepare to mark the 10th anniversary of that attack, that we are asking Americans around the country to pull out their phones, start up their webcams and share their stories with one another.

To find out more on how you can participate and show your support for the victims and heroes of 9/11, visit MyHeritage today. 

Member Story: Joe Simonds – Houston, TX

Having just brought a baby girl into this world, Young President’s Club member Joe Simonds fears his daughter won’t know what it means to be a proud American by the age of 10. “I fear that she could be expelled from school for saying a prayer or perhaps even the pledge of Allegiance because it contains the word ‘God’ in it.”
“Our country was built on conservative principles,” he says. “That is what has made us so unique and powerful as a nation. My fear is we have completely lost sight of what got us here in the first place.”
Joe became a Heritage member because he believes there has never been a greater need for conservatives to unite and have a voice. “Our leaders appear clueless, and our country is slowly losing the free enterprise, small government ideology upon which we were founded. That is exactly why I sought out membership with Heritage.”
As the founder of “Annuity Think Tank,” a website geared to financial planners, financial wholesalers and insurance agents, Joe highlights financial issues and implements solutions to get Americans back on the right financial path.
Joe references Heritage Foundation research on his website and social media platform and considers The Morning Bell to be one of the best morning reads. A frequent guest on talk radio shows, Joe believes our financial system will continue to experience volatility and insecurity until we truly confront our nation’s problems. At Heritage, we know this all to be too true.

To find more on Joe’s efforts on using free enterprise for growth, visit MyHeritage today

Heritage Work of Note

  • With Libyan rebel forces poised to end the decades-old dictatorship of Colonel Muammar Qadhafi, The Heritage Foundation’s Jim Phillips explains that the United States must focus on developing a forward strategy for dealing with the country. Phillips writes, “The Obama Administration, which stumbled into the war in Libya with no clear military plan or exit strategy, now must fashion a suitable and acceptable way forward. The Administration’s short-sighted effort to score a quick and easy military victory over Qadhafi’s regime failed to end the threat to civilians in “days not weeks,” as President Barack Obama promised. The administration now must scramble to develop and implement a long term strategy for a post-Qadhafi Libya.” Do you agree? Share your thoughts on MyHeritage.
  • Getting the national homeland security enterprise right is among the most difficult challenges in Washington because the problems in protecting the homeland are rooted in overcentralization, pervasive complacency, and entrenched politics—problems that often cause Washington to not work properly. In a new report, The Heritage Foundation’s Matt Mayer, James Jay Carafano, and Jessica Zuckerman provide recommendations for establishing the right type of homeland security for the United States—one that is enduring and efficacious. The experience of the past decade is a better guide to the future than what was thought in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. These recommendations are drawn from research by Heritage Foundation analysts over the past decade and from extensive outreach to and engagement with many of the stakeholders in the homeland security enterprise. To read the full report, click here.

In Other News

  • In a town hall meeting Saturday night, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) blamed the economic recession and unemployment on Tea Party activists. Telling the crowd to not be intimidated or frightened, she said “the Tea Party can go straight to hell.” She added: “And I’m gonna tell them how to get there.” Waters’ statement is just the latest in a pattern by liberal elected officials who express disdain for the concerned citizens who make up the Tea Party movement.
  • According to the Los Angeles Times, the national debt grows about $3 million every minute. That’s the fastest increase under any president ever. The national debt currently stands at $14.6 trillion.
  • An earthquake centered in Virginia rocked the east coast Tuesday, fortunately causing only limited damage.
  • President Obama’s approval ratings have reached an all time low. According to Gallup, 38 percent disapprove of the job Barack Obama is doing as president. Americans’ evaluation Congress is the even worse, with just 13 percent approving—the lowest rating ever recorded by Gallup.
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