Report Points to Clinton-Era Gunwalking

Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton

USA –-( The first official identified by name in the Fast and Furious gunwalking investigation has been tied to a similar Minnestoa operation in 1996 where “more than 150 guns flow[ed] into the Twin Cities underworld,” Kevin Diaz of the Star Tribune reported yesterday. Identifying supervisor George Gillett, Jr., who is now a cooperating witness in House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform investigations, Diaz reveals “Gillett was a street agent tracking gun store sales to ‘straw buyers’ working for suspected gang members. Some of those guns turned up in drug busts and crime scenes, including one that was found at the scene of a deadly shootout in north Minneapolis.”

Gillette was first identified as a central figure in the Fast and Furious investigation by a post on CleanUpATF, a whistleblower website aimed at exposing agency corruption, which was first reported by Mike Vanderboegh of Sipsey Street Irregulars in late December 2010.

A poster using the screen name “1desertrat” wrote “Word is that curious George Gillett the Phoenix ASAC stepped on it again. Allegedly he has approved more than 500 AR-15 type rifles from Tucson and Phoenix cases to be “walked” to Mexico. Appears that ATF may be one of the largest suppliers of assault rifles to the Mexican cartels! One of these rifles is rumored to have been linked to the recent killing of a Border Patrol Officer in Nogales, AZ. Can anyone confirm this information?”

Longtime Gun Rights Examiner readers will recall 1desertrat was the subject of an email exchange between ATF Chief Counsel Stephen R. Rubenstein and then-Acting Director Kenneth R. Melson, using Orders and Standards of Conduct as the mechanism for possible retaliatory action.

Current Acting Director B. Todd Jones is also from the Minneapolis office, Diaz reminds readers, who, in “dealing with acrimony” certainly has been aware of the “gunwalking” technique,” as was controversial former Phoenix Group VII Supervisor David Voth, albeit he was “was not around during the controversial Minnesota case.”

This is not the first time gunwalking in the Midwest has been reported. Gun Rights Examiner published an exclusive report last September providing documents indicating both ATF and the FBI allowed Indiana “crime gun” sales that, as with much of the reporting done in this column and by Vanderboegh, was ignored by the mainstream press, as has been their normal pattern.

It does lead to some interesting questions, particularly for those demanding to expand investigations to include the Bush-era “Operation Wide Receiver” program and his then-Attorney General Michael Mukasey. The Twin Cities operation took place under Janet Reno’s watch under President Bill Clinton.

That, in turn, makes speculation on Hillary Clinton and the State Department’s awareness of and involvement in Fast and Furious more understandable, especially recalling that former National Security Council official and current State employee Kevin O’Reilly has been placed out of Oversight Committee reach by assignment to Iraq and White House Counsel refuses to allow him to cooperate. It also leaves unanswered questions about why International Traffic in Arms Regulation implications have not been explored for ATF/Department of Justice complicity in apparent willful violations of ITAR provisions, which would have presumably occurred unless State had provided them with an exemption.

About David Codrea

David Codrea is a long-time gun rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He is a field editor for GUNS Magazine, and a blogger at The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance. Read more at