Operation Fast and Furious: Arming Mexican Cartels with U.S. Weapons with Pete Forcelli

    Oct 31, 2023

    Weapons are hitting the streets and killing Americans. They're fueling cartel and domestic drug trafficking violence. We have layers of complex problems that are all surrounded by policy decisions, which seem to be enabling criminal activity.

    Today on the show, Peter Forcelli, retired Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) executive and author of The Deadly Path, sheds light on the world of firearms trafficking. We explore the stark reality of crime-ridden parks in New York City housing projects, where children live in fear and are locked inside their homes for safety. But it doesn't end there, Pete takes us to the heart of the matter - the prosecution, or lack thereof, of gun crimes.

    We uncover the startling truth behind ATF. Operation Fast and Furious, a whistleblower's account that reveals a pattern of allowing firearms to flow into Mexico, leading to a staggering number of guns in the wrong hands. And as we discuss the impact of this operation and its consequences, we also touch on the current crisis of fentanyl and the arming of Mexican cartels with U.S. military spec weapons. This episode will leave you questioning the state of our justice system and the policies that guide it.

    In this episode, we will discuss: 

    • The scale, implications and consequences of Operation Fast and Furious, ultimately fueling the fire of gun violence
    • The opioid crisis in conjunction with cartel activities; turning internally to address the fentanyl situation
    • The "Broken Windows" theory and the regression in policy of prosecuting low-level crimes
    • Lack of utilization of parks in NYC housing project due to crime and safety concerns

    Learn more on Pete Forcelli's personal website: https://www.peterjforcelli.com/ 

    His book The Deadly Path: How Operation Fast & Furious and Bad Lawyers Armed Mexican Cartels will be released on March 5, 2024.



    Views expressed in this material are opinions of the host and the guest, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Rigaku Analytical Devices.

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    Michael W. Brown is the global director of counter-narcotics technology at Rigaku Analytical Devices. He has a distinguished career spanning more than 32 years as a Special Agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Most recently he was the DEA Headquarters staff coordinator for the Office of Foreign Operations for the Middle East-Europe-Afghanistan-India. Prior to that he served as the country attaché in India and Myanmar providing foreign advisory support for counter narcotic enforcement. He also spent 10 years in Pakistan as a special advisor to the US Embassy on various law enforcement issues. Michael is a graduate of the United States Ranger Training Battalion and has a master’s degree in Interdisciplinary Technology and Management from the University of Eastern Michigan.

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