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Project Gunrunner update: The fit hits the shan

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By Michelle Malkin  •  May 4, 2011 10:29 PM

I’ve been red-flagging this most explosive homeland security scandal for you for more than a month.

Independent citizen journalists, inside whistleblowers, and relentless GOP watchdogs on Capitol Hill led by GOP Rep. Darrell Issa and GOP Sen. Charles Grassley have kept up the pressure on the Obama administration to come clean on this deadly, stimulus-funded border nightmare.

And now, the fit is really starting to hit the shan on the Project Gunrunner story.

The latest?

Top DOJ officials have been nabbed in the drive to find out who exactly knew what and when.

Dutchman6 at Sipsey Street Irregulars called it early on.

Matthew Boyle at The DC sums up:

Three Project Gunrunner documents Rep. Darrell Issa, California Republican and House Oversight Committee chairman, released on Wednesday show high-ranking Justice Department officials were aware of Operation Fast and Furious and that there was a consistent administration policy that allowed American guns to be “walked” into Mexican drug cartels’ possession.

One of the documents shows Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer approved a wiretap application for suspects Operation Fast and Furious targeted in March 2010. The wiretap application process is lengthy and cumbersome, and often requires those applying to make strong case as to why they need it. So, Breuer would have been briefed in detail on Operation Fast and Furious before authorizing the wiretap.

Another document, a briefing paper from January 8, 2010, shows the administration’s step-by-step policy decisions and plans. The Phoenix Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), wrote that the “investigation has currently identified more than 20 individual connected straw purchasers,” or those who bought weapons, under ATF surveillance, with the intent to traffic them to Mexican drug cartels. The briefing paper shows that ATF’s policy was to allow this to happen. “Currently, our strategy is to allow the transfer of firearms to continue to take place, albeit at a much slower pace, in order to further the investigation and allow for the identification of additional co-conspirators who would continue to operate and illegally traffic firearms to Mexican DTOs [Drug Trafficking Organizations] which are perpetrating armed violence along the Southwest Border.”

Friction” between watchdogs and Team Obama is growing, natch.

And Holder is finally, finally squirming on the hotseat.

As I’ve noted before, this goes far beyond the usual waste, fraud and abuse underwritten by progressive profligacy. It’s bloodstained government malfeasance overseen by anti-gun ideologues.

Through continued, unified grilling and demands for disclosure, those security-undermining zealots are being smoked out.

They can run away from Gunrunner, but they cannot hide.

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