On Monday, Federal authorities released the names of four fugitives tied to the death of Agent Brian Terry and the failed operation “Fast and Furious.” Charged with the murder of Agent Terry and the assault of several other officers at the scene, these men have evaded U.S. and Mexican authorities for 18 months.
Following the disclosure of the criminals’ identities, the FBI announced a $1 million dollar reward for information leading to their arrest. The timing of this decision strikes me as odd. Why, after so long, have the troops of the Department of Justice been galvanized to action? Clearly, this announcement comes in the wake of Attorney General Eric Holder being held in contempt of Congress last month for his part in failing to release documentation regarding the operation.
While this is certainly a necessary and commendable step in the pursuit of these individuals, the timing is deplorable. The Terry family has waited 18 months for justice while the authorities have withheld information and only now, when it is politically convenient, is this information being released. Once again, an abysmal and self-protective decision has driven the Administration, and now politics are masquerading as policy.
Disclosure and distraction are two very different things. It appears the authorities are under the impression that this limited amount of information will quell the request for the release of documents surrounding the failed operation. While the reward is a good attempt to bring these individuals to justice, it is not sufficient to resolve the concerns around this operation. Despite the smoke and mirrors, the American people and Congress need to keep their eye on the ball and continue to demand a full accounting.