Obama vs. Gun Owners: No More Saigas, Kalashnikovs
Russ Chastain 07.17.14
Barack Obama’s latest offense against gun owners comes by way of Executive Order 13662. Purportedly related to Ukraine (yeah, right), this order prohibits business dealings with a long list of Russian individuals and businesses. Although this and all other executive orders are arguably illegal, there is no doubt that the strong arms of the executive branch (FBI, ATF, etc) will enforce it. This means it will very likely have real effects for gun owners.
Of greatest concern is the ban against doing business with Kalashnikov Concern (which includes Izhmash, maker of Saiga rifles and shotguns), the largest gun maker in Russia. Russian arms such as the AK-47 and AK-74 rifles and Saiga shotguns imported after July 16, 2014 will be in violation of Executive Order 13662.
This does not constitute a ban or limitation on the transfer of ownership of these guns within the United States of America. In other words: as long as Kalashnikov Concern is not involved in the transaction, no sweat.
More fuzzy is the status of guns currently possessed in the USA by distributors that may not already be fully paid for. From the Treasury Department’s FAQ:
375. If I have Kalashnikov products in my inventory, can I sell them?
If a U.S. person has an inventory of Kalashnikov Concern products in which Kalashnikov Concern has an interest (for example, the products are not fully paid for or are being sold on consignment), we advise that U.S. person to contact OFAC for further guidance on handling of the inventory. [7-16-2014]
While theoretically this attacks the Russian economy, these sanctions will likely do more to reduce the availability of affordable, reliable guns here in the USA and, one would suppose, cause Kalashnikov Concern to redouble efforts to peddle its wares to other folks–who may not look kindly upon Americans and our interests.