This story has been brewing for quite some time. Only now is the media picking up on it with any regularity. No, it's not from a guilty conscience even though US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed because of bumbling bureaucrats and it isn't from sudden revelations.
No, they smell blood and the pack is forming. Federal agents who were distressed with the slipshod handling of this operation are testifying, and their testimony is making liars out of high government officials.
I am keeping Agent Terry's photo on the top of every update. There is a cost to government incompetence, sometimes a very terrible one.
U.S. firearms agents told lawmakers on Wednesday they were instructed to only watch as hundreds of guns were bought, illegally resold and sent to Mexico where drug-related violence has raged for years.
Agents for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Arizona told the House of Representatives Oversight Committee they were told not to arrest the so-called straw buyers and instead see where the guns went.
Republicans and Democrats on the panel expressed outrage about the ATF program -- "Operation Fast and Furious" -- and demanded answers from the Obama administration about why arrests were secondary to tracking the firearms.
"We monitored as they purchased handguns, AK-47 variants and .50 caliber rifles, almost daily at times," John Dodson, an ATF special agent in Phoenix, told the committee.
"Rather than conduct any enforcement actions, we took notes, we recorded observations, we tracked movements of these individuals, we wrote reports but nothing more."
Dodson said agents were never given reasonable answers why their activities were limited.
An ATF supervisor in Phoenix, Peter Forcelli, said some tried to raise concerns with supervisors but were rebuffed.