Reference the Washington Post (aka WaPo) 16 July 2011, Editorial Board Opinion: A good step to slow the flow of guns to Mexico’s drug gangs (http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-justice-department-has-taken-an-important-step-to-reduce-the-illicit-flow-of-weapons/2011/07/14/gIQAdJ1zGI_story.html ).
This editorial has so many falsehoods Anthony Weiner must have written it for them! The WaPo has a “Fact Checker” column where their “crack” reporter, Glenn Kessler, is quick to point out errors in other peoples’ utterances but treats anything emanating from the WaPo as if it were “coming from a Burning Bush!” This editorial statement is especially misleading: “Mexico says that 93,000 illegal weapons have been seized since December 2006, nearly 90 percent of them from the United States.” Just because “Mexico says” doesn’t make it true but by not challenging this outright lie the WaPo validates it as true. This even contradicts a 14 Jun 2011 WaPo article: US report: 70 percent of arms seized, traced in Mexico came from US (http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/americas/us-report-70-percent-of-arms-seized-traced-in-mexico-came-from-us/2011/06/13/AGR2TlTH_story.html ). Even that story would merit four Pinocchios (their highest false rating) by the Fact Checker! The first paragraph of that article stated:
“MEXICO CITY — About 70 percent of the guns seized in Mexico and submitted to a U.S. gun-tracing program came from the United States, according to a report released by three U.S. senators Monday.”
Note the crafty (and misleading) wording the WaPo always employs: “Mexico says” or “guns seized in Mexico AND SUBMITTED to a U.S. gun-tracing program.” At least that article reduced the allegation to 70%. This editorial and the in the past the Obama administration’s ATF has maintained “over 90% of these firearms originated in the US” but had to back-peddle on that claim when U.S. Office of the Inspector General (OIG) made the ATF admit “the 90% figure cited to Congress was misleading because it applied only to the small fraction of Mexican crime guns that are traced and Mexico only attempts to trace guns that most likely can be traced to the US.” A Nov 10, OIG analysis of ATF data suggest a much lower percentage really come from the US and a recent Feb 11 STRATFOR (a widely respected global intelligence company) analysis calculated almost 90 percent of the guns seized in Mexico are NOT from the US.
In 2009, Mexico reported that they held 305,424 confiscated firearms, but only submitted 69,808 to the ATF for tracing. The gap between seizures and traces and the fact they only submit those likely to come from the US puts in serious question whether any significant number of illegal guns in Mexico really come from here.
It should also be noted that the most commonly recovered firearm is the old Soviet AK-47 type rifles which is NOT manufactured in the US and that most US military grade weapons are acquired by the cartels through the huge supply of arms left over from the wars in Central America and Asia. It has also been reported that there have been 150,000 desertions 2003-09 from the Mexican army (about 1/8th desert annually) and many of them take their government-issued automatic rifles with them.
Given all this, maybe we’re talking SIX Pinocchios!