Who's A Rat - Largest Online Database of Informants and Agents
HomeMembers LoginLatest NewsRefer A LawyerMessage BoardOnline StoreAffiliatesAbout UsContact Us
Who's A Rat - Largest Online Database of Informants and Agents Worldwide!
Site Navigation
Visit Our Store
Refer A Lawyer
Affiliates
Link To Us
Latest News
Top Secret Documents
Make A Donation
Important Case Law
Members Login
Feedback
Message Board
Legal Information
Advertise your AD, Book or Movie

Informants and Agents?Who's a Rat Message Board

WhosaRat.com
Sign up Calendar
 
 
 


Reply
  Author   Comment  
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #1 
In 1998, Frederick Hitz, CIA Inspector General admitted to the existence of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which exempted the intelligence agencies of the United States of America from reporting the drug crimes of its assets, contractors, and agents. The agreement was in effect from 1982 to 1995, covering both the Nicaraguan war and the Afghan war.

Hitz's admission was made before congress during hearings on CIA / CONTRA involvement in narcotics trafficking.

US Congresswoman Maxine Waters obtained copies of the documents and entered them into the congressional record. The documents can be viewed on the CIA website by clicking the links below.
They are signed by DCI William Casey
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_J._Casey

Attorney General William French Smith
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_French_Smith

Mark M. Richard, at that time Deputy Assistant Attorney General (Who has his own law enforcement award - The Mark M. Richard Memorial Award)

A.R. Cinquegrana - Deputy Chief of DoJ's Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR) from 1979 to 1991



See the documents here:


Exhibit 1

U.S. Attorney General William French Smith replies to a still classified letter from DCI William Casey requesting exemption from reporting drug crimes by CIA assets,agents and contractors.

Source:

https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-reports-1/cocaine/contra-story/01.gif






Exhibit 2:

DCI William Casey happily agrees with William French Smith and signs the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) exempting his agency from reporting drug crimes. This agreement covered both the Latin American conflicts and Afghanistan war. It remained in effect until August, 1995 when it was quietly rescinded by Janet Reno after Gary Webb began making inquiries for his series. The 1995 revision of the DOJ-CIA MOU specifically includes narcotics violations among the lists of potential offenses by non-employees that must be reported to DoJ.

Source:

https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-reports-1/cocaine/contra-story/13.gif




Exhibit 3:

On February 8, 1985, Deputy Chief of DoJ's Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR) from 1979 to 1991, A. R. Cinquegrana signed off on this letter approving the MOU. Mark M. Richard, Deputy Assistant Attorney General with responsibility for General Litigation and International Law Enforcement in 1982, states that he was unable to explain why narcotics violations were not on the list of reportable crimes except that the MOU had "other deficiencies, not just drugs."

Source:

https://www.cia.gov/library/reports/general-reports-1/cocaine/contra-story/14.gif






Maxine Waters investigation and testimony before the US House of Representatives can be seen here:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/117070568/US-Congresswoman-Maxine-Waters-Investigation-of-CIA-Contras-involvement-in-drug-sales-1996-2000



So there you have it. Four of the largest drug enablers in history, masquerading as law enforcement officials. Two of the men have Law enforcement awards named after them. When Journalist Gary Webb was told of the "William French Smith Law Enforcement Award" he laughed and asked "what do they give that out for"?

During his testimony before Congress Inspector General Fred Hitz was basically telling congress that records don't exist because none were required.


__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #2 
The trials of Rep. Maxine Waters: Ethics or payback?
August 20, 2010

by Joseph Debro
Congresswoman Maxine Waters waged a more successful war on drugs than the entire U.S. government. Maxine was concerned with those who made enormous profits from this trade, such as Ronald Reagan. He used those profits to fight a war for which the Congress would not pay. He flooded urban America with that poison. South Central Los Angeles was one of its targeted destinations. South Central is the heart of Maxine’s district.

http://sfbayview.com/2010/the-trials-of-rep-maxine-waters-ethics-or-payback/

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #3 
Preston Peet: How to Be a Successful Drug Dealer
Friday, 26 July 2002, 3:30 pm
Article: Preston Peet

How the People Seldom Catch Intelligence-
(or... How to Be a Successful Drug Dealer)

By Preston Peet * - Editor drugwar.com

“For me, one could write about lies from morning till night, but this is the one most worth writing about, because the domestic consequences are so horrible; it’s contributed to police brutality, police corruption, militarizations of police forces, and now, as we speak, it contributes to the pretext for another Viet Nam War.”

- Peter Dale Scott, July 24, 2000

On May 11, 2000, the US House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence made public their “Report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s Alleged Involvement in Crack Cocaine Trafficking in the Los Angeles Area.” The investigation by the HPSCI focused solely on the “implications” of facts reported in investigative reporter Gary Webb’s 3-part expose in the San Jose Mercury News, August, 18, 19, and 20, 1996, titled “Dark Alliance,” in which it was alleged that a core group of Nicaraguan Contra supporters formed an alliance with black dealers in South Central Los Angeles to sell cocaine to the Bloods and Crips street gangs, who turned it into crack, then the drug-profits were funneled back to Contra coffers by the Contra supporters. Approved for release in February, 2000, the HPSCI report states the Committee “found no evidence” to support allegations that CIA agents or assets associated in any way with the Nicaraguan Contra movement were involved in the supply or sale of drugs in the Los Angeles area. Utilizing a not-so-subtle strategy of semantics and misdirection, the HPSCI report seeks to shore up the justifiably crumbling trust in government experienced by the American public. But the report is still a lie.

One would have to intentionally not look to miss the copious amounts of evidence of CIA sanctioned and protected drug-trafficking, even in LA, that exists today in the public record, and the HPSCI succeeds admirably, disregarding sworn testimony, government reports, and ignores what agents on the ground at the scene have to say.

A Viet Nam veteran, and the DEA’s lead agent in El Salvador and Guatemala from 1985 to 1990, Celerino Castillo documented massive CIA sanctioned and protected drug-trafficking, and illegal Contra-supply operations at Illapango Airbase in El Salvador. Asked what he thought of the HPSCI report, Castillo said, “It is a flat-out lie. It is a massive cover-up....They completely lied, and I’m going to prove that they are lying with the case file numbers...I was there during the whole thing.”

After participating in the historic CIA-Drugs Symposium in Eugene, Oregon, June 11, 2000, Castillo decided to go back through his notes and journals, and his DEA-6’s, the bi-weekly reports he’d filled out at the time, to see just how many times his records didn’t match the “not guilty” verdict of the HPSCI report. “I’ve got them [CIA] personally involved in 18 counts of drugs trafficking....I’ve got them on 3 counts of murders of which they personally were aware, that were occurring, and...to make a long story short, I [also] came out with money laundering, 3 or 4 counts.”

Among the cases Castillo describes in his scathing written response to the HPSCI report, full of DEA case file numbers and Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Information System (NADDIS) numbers, is that of drug-trafficker Fransisco Rodrigo Guirola Beeche, who has two DEA NADDIS jackets, and is documented in DEA, CIA, and Customs files. On February 6, 1985, Guirola flew out of Orange County, California, “in a private airplane with 3 Cuban-Americans. It made a stop in South Texas where US Customs seized $5.9 million in cash. It was alleged that it was drug money, but because of his ties to the Salvadoran death squads and the CIA he was released, and the airplane given back.” In other words, the government kept the money, and known drug-trafficker Guirola got off with his airplane. In May of 1984, Guirola had gone with Major Roberto D’Abuisson, head of the death squads in El Salvador at that time, to a highly secret, sensitive, and as it turns out, successful meeting with former Deputy Director of Central Intelligence, Vernon Walters. “Walters was sent to stop the assassination of [then] US Ambassador to El Salvador, Thomas Pickering.” The CIA knew Guirola, and knew him well. Although the HPSCI report notes that John McCavitt, a senior CIA official in Guatemala and El Salvador at the time, “rejects forcefully” the idea that there was CIA involvement in trafficking in either country, and that he told the Committee that Illopango Airport in El Salvador hadn’t been used as a narcotics trans-shipment point by Contra leaders, Castillo documented Guirola less than a year after the arrest in South Texas, flying drugs, cash, and weapons in and out of Illopango Airfield, out of hangers 4 and 5, which were run respectively by Oliver North/Gen. Richard Secord’s National Security Council (NSC) Contra-supply operation, and the CIA. There’s no sign of Guirola within the entire 44 page HPSCI report.

Prof. Peter Dale Scott also wrote a response to the HPSCI report, in which he wrote “this latest deception cannot be written off as an academic or historical matter. The CIA’s practice of recruiting drug-financed armies is an on-going matter.”

Scott, a Professor Emeritus at Berkeley campus, University of California, prolific author, and a former Canadian diplomat from 1957 to 1961, has spent years studying and reporting on drug-trafficking connections of the CIA and other US government agencies. Knowing that the HPSCI report is full of lies and misrepresentations, Scott is at a loss as to how this report could have been authorized for release by the Committee, and voiced serious concerns about the staff of the HPSCI. “Well, they were headed by this guy who just committed suicide, (Chief of Staff John Millis), who not only was ex-CIA, he’d actually been working with Gulbuddin Hekmatyer in Afghanistan, (as part of CIA covert operations assisting in the fight against the Soviets in the late 70s and early 80s, while Hekmatyar moved tons of opium and smack). He may not have known about the Contra-drug connections, but he certainly knew about some CIA-drugs ties. I don’t think it was an accident that they picked someone from that area to sit over the staff either. I mean, this was one of the most sensitive political threats that the CIA had ever faced.” John Millis, a 19-year veteran of the CIA, was found dead of “suicide” in a dingy hotel room in Vienna, Virginia, just outside of Washington, DC, June 3, 2000, less than a month after the release of the HPSCI report.

The CIA released it’s own report in two parts, the Hitz Report, Vol. 1 in January, 1998, and Vol. 2, in October, 1998, (within hours of the vote by Congress to hold impeachment hearings over Clinton’s lying about a blow job), which examined the allegations of CIA protecting and facilitating, and participating directly in drug trafficking. There were numerous examples contained therein, particularly in Vol. 2, of just how much the CIA really knew about the drug trafficking of its “assets,” and admitted to knowing. But by the time the report was released to the public, the major news outlets, “the regular villains,” as Scott calls them, had already denigrated the story for 2 years, attacking and vilifying Webb, instead of investigating the facts themselves.

“The Washington Post, the New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times, all insisted that the Contra-cocaine was minor, and could not be blamed for the crack epidemic. As the [Hitz/CIA, and DoJ] government investigations unfolded, however, it became clear that nearly every major cocaine smuggling network used the Contras in some way, and that the Contras were connected- directly or indirectly- with possibly the bulk of cocaine that flooded the United States in the 1980s,” wrote one journalist who has covered this story extensively, from the very start.

“This has been the case since the beginning. The strategy of how to refute Webb is to claim that he said something that in fact he didn’t say. The Committee didn’t invent this kind of deflection away from the truth, they just followed in the footsteps of the New York Times, and the Washington Post, and they in turn may have been following in the footsteps of the CIA to begin with, but I don’t know,” said Scott. “The Committee was originally created to exert Congressional checks and restraints on the intelligence community, in accordance with the spirit of the Constitution. For some time it has operated instead as a rubber-stamp, deflecting public concern rather than representing it.”

Saturday, October 10th, 1998, anyone watching CNN that morning might have
caught a brief mention of the release of the Hitz Report, Vol. 2. CNN reported that the CIA acknowledged it knew of at least 58 companies and individuals involved in bringing cocaine into the US, and selling cocaine to US citizens, to help fund the Contra war in Nicaragua, while they were working for the CIA in some capacity.

March 16, 1998, Fred Hitz, then-Inspector General of the CIA, had already told US Representatives at the sole Congressional hearing on the first half of this report, Hitz Vol. 1, that the CIA had worked with both companies, and different individuals that it knew were involved in the drug trade. I.G. Hitz went on to say that the CIA knew that drugs were coming into the US along the same supply routes used for the Contras, and that the Agency did not attempt to report these traffickers in an expeditious manner, nor did the CIA sever it's relationship with those Contra supporters who were also alleged traffickers.

One of the most important things Hitz testified to was that William Casey, Director of the CIA under President Ronald Reagan, and William F. Smith, US Attorney General at that time, in March 1982 signed a “Memorandum Of Understanding,” in which it was made clear that the CIA had no obligation to report the allegations of trafficking involving “non-employees.” Casey sent a private message to A.G. Smith on March 2, 1982, in which he stated that he had signed the “procedures,” saying that he believed the new regulations struck a “...proper balance between enforcement of the law and protection of intelligence sources and methods....” This was in response to a letter from Smith to Casey on Feb. 11, 1982 regarding the new Executive Order of President Reagan’s that had recently been implemented, (E.O. 12333), issued in 1981, which required the reporting of drug crimes by US employees.

With the MOU in place, the CIA, in cooperation with the Department of Justice, changed the CIA's regulations in 1982, redefining the term “employee” to mean only full-time career CIA officials. The result of this was that suddenly there were thousands of people, contract agents, employees of the CIA, who were no longer called employees. Now they were people who were, “employed by, assigned to, or acting for an agency within the intelligence community.” Non-employees, if you will.

According to a memo sent to Mark M. Richard, the Deputy Assistant Attorney General/Criminal Division, of the USA, on the subject of CIA reporting of Drug Offenses, dated February 8, 1985, this meant, as per the 1982 MOU, that the CIA really was under no obligation to report alleged drug violations by these “non-employees.”

It is pure disinformation for the HPSCI to print, “CIA reporting to DoJ of information on Contra involvement in narcotics trafficking was inconsistent but in compliance with then-current policies and regulations. There is no evidence however that CIA officers in the field or at headquarters ever concealed narcotics trafficking information or allegations involving the Contras.”

“On April 29, 1989, the DoJ requested that the Agency provide information regarding Juan Matta Ballesteros and 6 codefendants for use in prosecution. DoJ also requested information regarding SETCO, described as ‘a Honduran corporation set up by Juan Matta Ballesteros.’ The May 2 CIA memo to DoJ containing the results of Agency traces on Matta, his codefendants, and SETCO stated that following an ‘extensive search of the files and indices of the directorate of Operations ...There are no records of a SETCO Air.’” Matta, wanted by the DEA in connection with the brutal 30-hour torture and murder of one of their agents, Enrique Camarena, in Mexico in February 1985, and who Newsweek magazine described, May 15, 1985, as being responsible for up to a third of all cocaine entering the US, was a very well known trafficker, so it is ludicrous to suggest that the CIA hasn’t covered-up evidence of drug trafficking by assets, even from their own investigators.

“I mean, this is different than the MOU, which said the CIA was under no obligation to volunteer information to the DoJ,” said Scott. “It never said the CIA was allowed to withhold information from the DoJ. In the case of SETCO, they were asked for the information, and the CIA replied falsely that there was none. The Hitz people tried to find out how this could have happened, and one person said I just didn’t know about SETCO, but that is impossible. If people like me knew about SETCO, how could they not? Because the SETCO thing was a big thing.” Matta’s SETCO airline was one of four companies that, although known by the US Government to be engaged in drug-trafficking, in 1986 were still awarded contracts by the US State Department with the Nicaraguan Humanitarian Assistance Organization, (NHAO). These companies were flying weapons and supplies in to the Contras, then drugs back to the US, on the same aircraft, with the knowledge of CIA officials. Matta was protected from prosecution until his usefulness to the Contra efforts came to an end. Then he was arrested, tried and convicted in 1989, the same year Manuel Noriega was removed from office in Panama by US troops, and arrested for trafficking.

The Contra-CIA drug trafficking was no anomaly, but rather normal operating procedure for US Intelligence, particularly the CIA, and for the US government, while they actively perpetuate the War on Some Drugs.

Rep. Maxine Waters, (D-CA), in a speech in the House of Representatives on March 18, 1997, outlined various reports of CIA drug trafficking complicity. Noting a New York Times article dated November 20, 1993, she stated that “the CIA anti-drug program in Venezuela shipped a ton of nearly pure cocaine into the USA in 1990. The CIA acknowledged that the drugs were sold on the streets of the USA....Not one CIA official has ever been indicted or prosecuted for this abuse of authority.” Rep. Waters continued, calling it a “cockamamie scheme.” She described how the CIA had approached the DEA, who has the authority over operations of this nature, and asked for their permission to go through with the operation, but the DEA said “No.” The CIA did it anyway, explaining later to investigators that this was the only way to get in good with the traffickers, so as to set them up for a bigger bust the next time.

In late 1990, CIA Agent Mark McFarlin and Gen. Ramon Guillen Davila of the Venezuelan National Guard, sent an 800 pound shipment of cocaine to Florida, where it was intercepted by US Customs at Miami International Airport, which lead to the eventual indictment of Guillen in 1996 in Miami, FL, for trafficking 22 tons of cocaine into the city of Miami. Gen. Guillen was the former chief Venezuelan anti-drug cop.
“Speaking from his safe haven in Caracas, Guillen insisted that this was a joint CIA-Venezuelan operation aimed at the Cali cartel. Given that Guillen was a long time CIA employee, and that the drugs were stored in a Venezuelan warehouse owned by the CIA, the joint part of Guillen’s statement is almost certainly true, although the ‘aimed at’ part is almost certainly false.”

“That is the case that has gone closest to the heart of the CIA, because the CIA actually admitted to the introduction of a ton [of cocaine onto US streets]. The man was indicted for 22 tons, and [some people said] that his defense was that the CIA approved all of it,” Scott said, recalling the audacity of the case. For the very same Nov. 20, 1993 NYTimes article mentioned in Rep. Waters’ speech, “the spin the CIA gave the Times was that it was trying to sting Haiti's National Intelligence Service (SIN) - which the CIA itself had created.”

Which brings us to the case of Col. Michael Francois, one of the Haitian coup leaders who overthrew democratically-elected Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 1991, helping rule Haiti until 1994. Rep. Waters mentioned, in her impassioned speech on March 18, a Los Angeles Times article, dated March 8, 1997, that reported, “Lt. Col. Michel Francois, one of the CIA's reported Haitian agents, a former Army officer and a key leader in the military regime that ran Haiti between 1991 and 1994, was indicted in Miami with smuggling 33 tons of cocaine into the USA.”

“New York Times, November 14, 1993: ‘1980's CIA Unit in Haiti Tied to Drug Trade - Political Terrorism committed against Aristide supporters: The Central Intelligence Agency created an intelligence service in Haiti in the mid-1980's to fight the cocaine trade, but the unit evolved into an instrument of political terror whose officers sometimes engaged in drug trafficking, American and Haitian officials say. Senior members of the CIA unit committed acts of political terror against Aristide supporters, including interrogations and torture, and in 1992 threatened to kill the local chief of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. According to one American official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, ‘it was an organization that distributed drugs in Haiti and never produced drug intelligence.’ How shocking to the innocents at CIA, who certainly had expected Haiti's policemen to be above venality. That is, the SIN dealers, led by Brig. Gen. Raoul Cedras and Michel Francois, who overthrew the legally elected populist Jean-Bertrand Aristide in September of 1991, were armed and trained by Bush's CIA. In fact, Bush's CIA Director, Casey's assistant Robert Gates, was actually stupid enough to call Cedras one of the most promising ‘Haitian leaders to emerge since the Duvalier family dictatorship was overthrown in 1986.’”

“When the DEA's Tony Greco tried to stop a massive cocaine shipment in May, 1991, four months before the coup, his family received death threats on their private number from ‘the boss of the man arrested.’ The only people in Haiti who had that number were the coup leaders, army commander Raoul Cedras and his partner,
Port-au-Prince police chief Michel Francois, ‘the boss of the man arrested.’ A 1993 U.S. GAO [Government Accounting Office] report insisted that Cedras and Francois were running one of the largest cocaine export rings in the world.”

In January 2000, US Customs found 5 cocaine hauls welded deep within the steel hulls of “Haitian” freighters on the Miami River in Florida. (There have since been many more shipments intercepted.) The mainstream press reported that the drugs had “passed through” Haiti from Colombia. What the mainstream press did not focus on was that the 5 freighters were registered in Honduras, where coincidentally lives Haitian expatriate Michel Francois. Francois, a graduate of the infamous US Army’s School of the Americas, has an extradition request out for him from the DEA. During the subsequent investigation of this freighter smuggling by the DEA, two Haitians were arrested in Miami, suspected of masterminding the freighter operation. One, Emmanuelle Thibaud, had been allowed to emigrate to Miami in 1996, 2 years after Aristide returned to power. When US police searched his Florida home Jan. 29, 2000, “they found documents linking him to Michel Francois.” The Los Angeles Times quoted an FBI investigator, Hardrick Crawford, saying “it is not a big leap to assume that Francois is still directing the trafficking from Honduras.” Although the US requested extradition of Francois in 1997, the Honduran Supreme Court ruled against it. So the CIA-molded and nurtured Francois continues to surface in these international drug investigations.

Explaining why they feel the US government recertified Haiti again this year as a cooperative partner in the War on Some Drugs, even with the abundance of evidence to the contrary pointing to Haitian officials’ continued involvement in the drug trade, (2000), Haiti Progress, the leftist Haitian weekly based in NYC, wrote, “Because they need the ‘drug war’ to camouflage their real war, which is a war against any people which rejects U.S. hegemony, neoliberal doctrine, and imperialism....Like Frankenstein with his monster, the U.S. often has to chase after the very criminals it creates. Just as in the case of Cuba and Nicaragua, the thugs trained and equipped by the Pentagon and CIA go on to form vicious mafias, involved in drug trafficking, assassinations, and money laundering.”

A case involving the CIA stepping in and crushing an investigation into drug trafficking by CIA assets and favored clients took place in Philadelphia from 1995 to 1996, and continues in the official harassment of the investigating officer in charge. John “Sparky” McLaughlin is a narcotics officer in the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Bureau of Narcotics Investigations and Drug Control, Office of the Attorney General, (OAG/BNI). On October 20, 1995, McLaughlin and two other officers approached a suspiciously acting Daniel Croussett. While questioning Croussett, the officers found documents in his car marked Trifuno ‘96, which Croussett told McLaughlin’s team belonged “to a political party back in the DR, and they are running Jose Francisco Pena-Gomez for President in May.” This political party was the Dominican Revolutionary Party, (PRD). McLaughlin, in a supplemental report filed January 29, 1996, wrote that Trifuno ‘96 was basically a set of instructions on how to “organize the estimated 1.2 million Dominicans who currently reside outside the Dominican Republic to overthrow the present regime in the elections May, 1996.” Soon it was obvious that McLaughlin’s team had uncovered an enormous drug-trafficking operation, run by a group associated with the PRD, the Dominican Federation, who were supporters of the man most favored to win the Dominican Presidency in 1996, and more ominously, most favored by the US government, and the Clinton Administration. An informant for McLaughlin had told him that if Pena was elected, he was going to make sure that the price of heroin for Dominican supporters fell dramatically.

On October 26, 1995, former CIA operations officer and State Department Field Observer, Wilson Prichett, hired as a security analyst by the BNI, wrote a memo to McLaughlin’s boss, BNI supervisor John Sunderhauf, stating he felt it time to bring in the CIA as they may already have had a covert interest in the PRD. By December 7, 1995, the CIA was called in to give assistance, and to advise the local officers in this case that had potential international ramifications. On Jan. 27, 1996, Sunderhauf, received a memo from CIA Chief of Station in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Larry Leightley.

“‘It is important to note that Pena-Gomez and the PRD in 1995 are considered mainstream in the political spectrum,’ Leightley wrote. ‘Pena-Gomez currently leads in the polls and has a better than even chance of being elected the next President of the Dominican Republic in May, 1996 elections. He and his PRD ideology pose no specific problems for U.S. foreign policy and, in fact, Pena-Gomez was widely seen as the ‘U.S. Embassy’s candidate’ in the 1994 elections given the embassy’s strong role in pressuring for free and fair elections and Pena’s role as opposition challenger.’ Leightley went on to say that on Dec. 11, 1995, Undersecretary of State Alex Watson had a lengthy meeting with Pena-Gomez, whom Leightley stated ‘is a well-respected political leader in the Caribbean.’”

By this time, McLaughlin’s team had hooked up with DEA investigators in Worcester, Massachusetts, who informed them that the PRD headquarters in Worcester was the main hub of the Dominican narcotics trafficking for all of New England. McLaughlin was able to get an informant wearing a wire inside some meetings of the PRD, who taped instructions being given by PRD officials on how to raise money by narcotics trafficking for the Pena-Gomez candidacy. Then the CIA turned ugly and wanted the name of McLaughlin’s informant, and all memos they had written to the BNI on the matter.

McLaughlin and his team refused to turn the name over, fearing for the informant’s life. On March 27, 1996, CIA Agent Dave Lawrence arrived for a meeting with McLaughlin, and Sunderhauf at BNI headquarters. According to court documents filed in McLaughlin’s civil suit against the CIA, the Pennsylvania Attorney General, the United States Attorney in Philadelphia, and the State Department, “CIA Agent Lawrence stated that he wanted the memo that he gave this agency on Jan. 31, 1996, and that BNI shouldn’t have received it in the first place. CIA agent Lawrence went on to state that he wanted the identification of the C/I and what province he came from in the Dominican Republic, CIA agent Lawrence was adamant about getting this information and he was agitated when BNI personnel refused his request.” As this was potentially a very damaging case for the US government, which seemed to be protecting a known group of traffickers, if the informant disappeared, there’d be no more potential problem for the US government.

Within 2 weeks of refusing to turn over the name of his informant to the CIA, all of McLaughlin’s pending cases were dismissed by the Philadelphia DA, declared un-prosecutable, stories were leaked to the press alleging investigations into McLaughlin’s team for corruption, and superiors ordered McLaughlin’s team not to comment on charges publicly to the press, putting McLaughlin under a gag order. McLaughlin’s team broke up, and McLaughlin’s civil suit against his employers and the CIA is still pending at the time of writing, (July/August, 2000).

“We have uncovered more than sufficient evidence that conclusively shows that the US State Department was overtly, there wasn’t anything secret about it, overtly supporting the PRD, and that the PRD, which had as part of its structure a gang that was dedicated to selling drugs in the United States,” said former US Congressman Don Bailey, who is representing McLaughlin in his suit. Bailey said that he suspects the government got the name of the informant anyway, as he cannot find the informant now.

A source close to the case confirms that photographs were taken of Al Gore attending a fund-raising event at Coogan’s Pub in Washington Heights in September, 1996. The fund-raiser was held by Dominicans associated with the PRD, some of whom, such as PRD officers Simon A. Diaz, and Pablo Espinal even having DEA NADDIS jackets, and several had “convictions for sales of pounds of cocaine, weapons violations and the laundering of millions of dollars in drug money.” Why was the Secret Service allowing Vice-President Gore to meet with known traffickers, and accept campaign contributions from the same known drug traffickers?

Joe Occhipinti, a senior INS agent in NYC with 22 years service and one of the most decorated federal officers in history with 78 commendations and awards to his credit, began investigating Dominican drug connections in 1989. Occhipinti developed evidence, while solving the murder of a NYC cop by Dominican drug lords, that one of the Dominican drug lords was “buying up Spanish grocery stores, called bodegas in Washington Heights to facilitate his drug trafficking and money laundering activities.” Occhipinti launched what began to turn into the very successful, multi-agency task-force Operation Bodega, netting 40 arrests, and the seizure of more than $1 Million cash from drug proceeds. In one memorable raid, officers found $136,000 “wrapped and ready” to be shipped to Sea Crest trading, a suspected CIA front company. Then Occhipinti found himself set up, arrested, tried, and convicted for violating the rights of some members of the Dominican Federation he’d busted during the operation. Sentenced to 36 months in prison in 1991, Occhipinti was pardoned by the out-going President Bush in 1993.

Another investigator who tied Sea Crest trading to the CIA was former NYPD detective Benjamin Jackobson, who began investigating the company for food-coupon fraud in 1994. “According to Justice Department documents obtained by Congressman James Trafficant (D-OH), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) believes that Sea Crest is behind much of the money laundering in New York’s Washington Heights area of Manhattan, but that attempts to prosecute the company ‘have been hampered and legislatively fought by certain interest groups and not a single case has been initiated.’ Jacobson’s inquiry led him to conclude that one of those ‘interest groups’ was the CIA, which, the investigator believes, was using Sea Crest as a front for covert operations, including weapons shipments to mujahideen groups in Afghanistan.”

“All I can say is,” said Occhipinti, “I find it very unusual that dozens of viable federal and state investigations into the Dominican Federation, and the activities of Sea Crest Trading company were prematurely terminated...I am not optimistic that this stuff is ever going to really break. They will just simply attempt to discredit the people bringing forward the evidence, and to try to selectively prosecute some to intimidate the rest.”
“My investigation confirmed that Sea Crest, as well as the Dominican Federation, are being politically protected by high ranking public officials who have received illegal political contributions which were drug proceeds. In addition, the operatives in Sea Crest were former CIA-Cuban operatives who were involved in the `Bay of Pigs'. This is one of the reasons why the intelligence community has consistently protected and insulated Sea Crest and the Dominican Federation from criminal prosecution,” testified one NYPD Internal Affairs officer, William Acosta, in sworn testimony entered into the
Congressional Record by Rep. James Trafficant. “I have evidence which can corroborate the drug cartel conspiracy against Mr. Occhipinti.”

It should also cause no undue concern among American citizens that the winner of the Dominican Presidential race on May 18, 2000, was Hipolito Mejia, vice-presidential running mate of the infamous Pena-Gomez in 1990, and who was the vice-president of his party, the PRD, for years before winning the race. The inauguration will take place August 16, 2000. Not to mention that Clinton Administration insider and former Chairman of the Democratic National Party, Charles Manatt, accepted the US Ambassadorship to poverty-stricken Dominican Republic, presenting his credentials on December 9, 1999 to the Dominican government.

Bringing one of the minor players in Gary Webb’s story back into the limelight, Wednesday, July 26, 2000, the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the second highest court in the US, ruled that asylum-seeking Nicaraguan Renato Pena Cabrera, former cocaine dealer and Fuerza Democratica Nicaraguense, (FDN), Contra faction spokesman in Northern California during the early 80s, should have a judge hear his story in court. Pena is fighting extradition from the US stemming from a 1985 conviction for cocaine trafficking. Pena alleges the drug dealing he was involved in had the express permission of the US Government, and that he was told by the prosecutor soon after his 1984 arrest that he would not face deportation, due to his assisting the Contra efforts.

“Pena and his allies supporting the Contras became involved in selling cocaine in order to circumvent the congressional ban on non-humanitarian aid to the Contras. Pena states that he was told that leading Contra military commanders, with ties to the CIA, knew about the drug dealing,” the 3 judge panel wrote in its decision. Pena’s story seemed plausible to the judges, who decided that the charges were of such serious import they deserved to be heard and evaluated by a judge in court. It also means that they probably do not believe the HPSCI report. Perhaps they were remembering the entries in Oliver North’s notebooks, dated July 9, 1984, writing of a conversation with CIA agent Duane “Dewey” Clarridge, when North wrote, “Wanted aircraft to go to Bolivia to pick up paste,” and “Want aircraft to pick up 1,500 kilos.”

The CIA-created FDN were the best-trained, best-equipped Contra faction, based in Honduras, and lead by former Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Samoza’s National Guardsman, Enrique Bermudez. Pena was selling drugs in San Fransisco for Norwin Meneses, one of the main figures in Webb’s story, another Nicaraguan who was in turn sending much of that money to the Contras. “It was during October, 1982, that FDN leaders met with Meneses in L.A. and San Fransisco in an effort to set up local Contra support groups in those cities.” Pena was arrested along with Jairo Meneses, Norwin’s nephew. Pena copped a guilty plea to one count of possession with intent to sell, in March, 1985, getting a 2-year sentence in exchange for informing on Jairo.

Dennis Ainsworth, an American Contra supporter in San Fransisco, told the FBI in 1987 that he was told by Pena that “the FDN is involved in drug smuggling with the aid of Norwin Meneses.” Ainsworth also told the FBI that the FDN “had become more involved in selling arms and cocaine for personal gain than in a military effort to overthrow the current Nicaraguan Sandinista government,” and went so far as to tell them that he’d been contacted in 1985 by a US Customs Agent, who told him that “national security interests kept him from making good narcotics cases.” When Jairo Meneses reached court for sentencing in 1985, in exchange for a 3-year sentence he testified against his uncle, claiming to be a book keeper for Norwin, but nothing happened. Norwin Meneses continued to operate freely.

Webb’s attention was initially directed towards Danilo Blandon Reyes, partner of Norwin Meneses, and who turned out to be the supplier for “Freeway” Ricky Ross, described by many as being instrumental in the spread of crack throughout South Central Los Angeles and beyond, beginning in late 1981. By 1983, Ross “was buying over 100 kilos of cocaine a week, and selling as much as $3 million worth of crack a day.” Pena, during this same time, between 1982-1984, according to information in the CIA’s Hitz Report, Vol. 2, made 6 to 8 trips, “for Meneses’ drug-trafficking organization. Each time, he says he carried anywhere from $600,000 to $1,000,000 to Los Angeles and returned to San Fransisco with 6 to 8 kilos of cocaine” Webb speculates that, “Even with the inflated cocaine prices of the early 1980s, the amount of money Pena was taking to LA was far more than was needed to pay for 6 to 8 kilos of cocaine. It seems like that the excess- $300,000 to $500,000 per trip--was the Contra’s cut of the drug proceeds.”

Whether Pena’s appeal will eventually reach a court is not yet known. Most likely someone in Washington, DC, perhaps even former CIA officer and current Chairman of the HPSCI, Rep. Porter Goss himself, (R-FL), is going to pick up the phone and call the Special Assistant US Attorney listed in the court filings, Robert Yeargin, tell him to drop the case, and allow Pena to remain in the US. The CIA and the US government do not want anyone bringing Hitz Vol. 2 into a court room, and giving it the public hearing that former CIA Director John Deutch promised.

The evidence of the CIA working with traffickers is irrefutable. Many Congressional inquiries and committees have gathered together massive amounts of evidence pointing to CIA drug connections, such as Sen. John Kerry’s (D-Mass) Senate Subcommittee on Narcotics and Terrorism, which released a report in December, 1988, exploring many of the Contra/CIA-drug allegations. As Jack Blum, former Chief Counsel to the Kerry Committee testified to in Senate hearings October 23, 1996, (before Arlen Specter's subcommittee, who is the inventor of the infamous “magic-bullet theory” for the Warren Commission’s investigation of the Kennedy assassination), “If you ask: In the process of fighting a war against the Sandinistas, did people connected with the US government open channels which allowed drug traffickers to move drugs into the United States, did they know the drug traffickers were doing it, and did they protect them from law enforcement? The answer to all those questions is “YES.” The Kerry Report’s main conclusions go directly opposite that of the latest HPSCI report: “It is clear that individuals who provided support for the Contras were involved in drug trafficking. The supply network of the Contras was used by drug trafficking organizations, and elements of the Contras themselves received financial and material assistance from drug traffickers.”

Webb’s article’s resulted in a Department of Justice investigation as well, lead by DoJ Inspector General Michael Bromwich. The DoJ found that indeed that CIA did intervene to stop an investigation into Julio Zavala, a suspect in the “Frogman” case in San Fransisco, in which swimmers in wetsuits were bringing cocaine to shore from Colombian freighters. When police arrested Zavala, they seized $36,000. The CIA got wind of depositions being planned, and stepped in. “It is clear that the CIA believed that it had an interest in preventing the depositions, partly because it was concerned about an allegation that its funds were being diverted into the drug trade. The CIA discussed the matter with the U.S. Attorney's Office, the depositions were canceled, and the money was returned.”

Since the release of the HPSCI report in May, there has been a noticeable silence emanating from the office of Rep. Maxine Waters, who after the release of Hitz Vol. 1, had called for open hearings, and who at the time of this writing, had still not authorized her staff to make any statements on the subject. Rep. Waters told the HPSCI in 1998 it was a shame that after all the evidence of CIA assets being involved in drug trafficking gathered by Senate officials in the 80s, that the CIA either absolutely knew, or turned its head, “at the same time we are spending million of dollars talking about a war on drugs? Give me a break, Mr. Chairman, and Members, We can do better than this.” There has yet to be a public hearing on Hitz Vol. 2. The HPSCI has released a report that blatantly lies to the American people, who have watched their rights and liberties chipped away a bit at a time in the name of the War on Some Drugs, while certain unscrupulous individuals within the CIA and other branches of US Government, as well as the private sector, have made themselves rich off the war. The investigations into the CIA-Contra-Cocaine connections serve only to focus attention upon one small part of the whole picture, while the HPSCI report narrows the field even further, by insisting on refuting, poorly one might add, Webb’s reporting yet again. “These guys have long ago become convinced that they can control what people believe and think entirely through power and that facts are irrelevant,” said former Assistant Secretary of Housing, and Federal Housing Commissioner under Bush, Catherine Austin Fitts.

The HPSCI only mentions the most prolific drug smuggler in US history, who used the Contra-supply operations to broaden his own smuggling operation, , in passing, relegating Barry Seal to a mere footnote. Mena, Arkansas, Seal’s base of operations during the same time then-Arkansas Gov. Clinton’s good friend Dan Lasatar was linked by the FBI to a massive cocaine trafficking ring, isn’t mentioned once. White House NSC members Oliver North, Admiral John Poindexter, and General Richard Secord, were all barred for life from entering Costa Rico due to their Contra drug trafficking connections by the Costa Rican government in 1989, but you won’t read that in the HPSCI report.

Then there are the drug-financed armies, such as the Kosovo Liberation Army, (KLA), which in 1996 was being called a terrorist organization by the US State Department, while the European Interpol was compiling a report on their domination of the European heroin trade. US forces handed a country to the KLA/Albanian drug cartels, and just over one year later the US is facing a sharp increase in heroin seizures, and addiction figures. Back in the 60s and 70s it was the Hmong guerrilla army fighting a “secret” war completely run by the CIA in Laos. Senator Frank Church’s Committee hearings on CIA assassinations and covert operations in 1975, “accepted the results of the Agency’s own internal investigation, which found, not surprisingly, that none of its operatives had ever been in any way involved in the drug trade. Although the CIA’s report had expressed concern about opium dealing by its Southeast Asian allies, Congress did not question the Agency about is allegiances with leading drug lords-the key aspect, in my view, of CIA complicity in narcotics trafficking,” wrote Alfred McCoy, author of the seminal “Politics of Heroin,” in 1972. Sounds a bit familiar, doesn’t it? Brit Snider, current IG of the CIA, testified before the HPSCI in closed door session, May 5, 1999. “While we found no evidence that any CIA employees involved in the Contra program had participated in drug-related activities or had conspired with other in such activities, we found that the Agency did not deal with Contra-related drug trafficking allegations and information in a consistent, reasoned or justifiable manner. In the end, the objective of unseating the Sandinistas appears to have taken precedence over dealing properly with potentially serious allegations against those whom the Agency was working.” Yet, somehow the HPSCI felt justified in releasing this utter sham of a report to the American people, assuring us that it “found no evidence to support allegations,” that CIA connected individuals were selling drugs in the Los Angeles area.

For US politicians to continue hollering for stronger law enforcement tactics, tougher sentencing guidelines, and vote to give the Colombian military $1.3 billion dollars, so it can turn around and buy 68 Blackhawk helicopters from US arms merchants, to assist Colombia in its War on Some Drugs, then the lies have a personal effect on our lives. This is not a harmless little white lie, this is costing thousands of undue, horrible deaths each year, this sham of a War. For US politicians to continue to vote for increased Drug War funding, when the evidence is irrefutable that US intelligence agencies, federal law enforcement agencies, and even some Government officials in elected office, have actively worked to protect, and cover-up for the real major drug lords, the analogies to Viet Nam are not so far off the mark.

“When I came to America in 1961, the US was just beginning a program where they were sending advisors [to Viet Nam], insisting that they would never be anything more, and [they had] a defoliation program, an extensive defoliation program, which is what we are doing now in Colombia, only I think we now have even more advisors in Colombia, and we’ve graduated to biowarfare in Colombia, which is something we are treaty bound not to do. Yet we are doing it. The deeper in we get, the harder it will be to get out. So there may be still a chance to get out of this mess, or to change it to a political solution, but it is dangerously like Viet Nam.”

Colombia is perfect illustration of the hypocrisy of the War on some Drugs, when we consider the case of Col. James Hiett, former head of the US anti-drug efforts in Colombia. Col. Hiett covered up for his wife Laurie, who in 1998 came under investigation by the US Army for smuggling cocaine and heroin through the US Embassy postal service in Bogata. Laurie gave thousands of dollars of drug profits to her husband to launder for her quietly. Not only did the US military put her under investigation, they told Col. Hiett they did so, giving him time to cover his tracks. The Army performed a perfunctory investigation of the Colonel, cleared him of any wrong doing, then recommended he get probation. Laurie was sentenced to 5 years in May, 1999, in Brooklyn NY, and Col. Hiett was sentenced to 5 months, July 15, 2000. Hernan Aquila, the mule that Laurie hired to pick up the drugs in NYC and deliver them to the dealers, got a longer sentence than the two Hietts put together, 5 and a half years. He is Colombian, they are white Americans. He was a mule, Col. Hiett was in charge of all US anti-drug efforts in Colombia, and his wife was one of the masterminds of the operation.

“In the Colombian drug war, denial goes far beyond the domesticated: Col. Hiett turned a blind eye not only to his wife's drug profiteering but to the paramilitaries, to the well-documented collusion of Colombian officers in those death squads and to the massive corruption of the whole drug-fighting enterprise. [Col.] Hiett's sentencing revealed not an overprotective husband, but a military policy in which blindness is the operative strategy -- a habit of mind so entrenched that neither Col. Hiett nor the Clinton administration nor the U.S. Congress can renounce it, even as the prison door is swinging shut,” wrote one aghast reporter.

Former US Ambassador to Paraguay and El Salvador Robert White said, “Cocaine is now Colombia’s leading export,” laughing at “the idea that an operation of that magnitude can take place without the cooperation of the business, banking, transportation executives, and the government, civil as well as military.”

Will the American people continue to accept the lies and cover-ups? Will the people allow Congress to continue refusing to address the officially sanctioned and CIA-assisted global trafficking, insisting that it cannot find any evidence that it exists, meanwhile voting ever more cash to support the War ? Every American should feel personally insulted that regardless of the facts, their elected Representatives choose to yet again foist another lie upon them, but they shouldn’t feel surprised. This entire War on Some Drugs is predicated upon the existence of the black market, so to ensure the existence of that black market, the intelligence agencies such as the CIA actively promote and protect the power and wealth of the cartels, and themselves, by creating endless enemies.

Perhaps the suitable way to stop their lies and cover-ups would be to sentence these men and women to 10 years of addiction in the streets of America under current prohibition policies, to suffer the consequences of their actions, and give them a taste of their own medicine.

***********

© Preston Peet, reused with permission of the author.

* Preston Peet is a freelance writer and the editor/creator of New York based http://www.drugwar.com/. This article was originally published in disinformation publishing's “You Are Being Lied To”. See… http://www.drugwar.com/pYABLTexcerpts.shtm for more information on the publication.

© Scoop Media
http://www.drugwar.com/pcatchintel.shtm
http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/HL0207/S00202.htm

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #4 
The Warning in Gary Webb’s Death
December 9, 2012

http://consortiumnews.com/2012/12/09/the-warning-in-gary-webbs-death-2/

From the Archive: Modern U.S. history is more complete because journalist Gary Webb had the courage to revive the dark story of the Reagan administration’s protection of Nicaraguan Contra cocaine traffickers in the 1980s. But Webb ultimately paid a terrible price, as Robert Parry reports.

By Robert Parry (Originally published Dec. 9, 2011)

Every year since investigative journalist Gary Webb took his own life in 2004, I have marked the anniversary of that sad event by recalling the debt that American history owes to Webb for his brave reporting, which revived the Contra-cocaine scandal in 1996 and forced important admissions out of the Central Intelligence Agency two years later.

But Webb’s suicide on the evening of Dec. 9, 2004, was also a tragic end for one man whose livelihood and reputation were destroyed by a phalanx of major newspapers – the New York Times, the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times– serving as protectors of a corrupt power structure rather than as sources of honest information.

Journalist Gary Webb holding a copy of his Contra-cocaine article in the San Jose Mercury-News.

In reviewing the story again this year, I was struck by how Webb’s Contra-cocaine experience was, in many ways, a precursor to the subsequent tragedy of the Iraq War.

In the 1980s, the CIA’s analytical division was already showing signs of politicization, especially regarding President Ronald Reagan’s beloved Contras and their war against Nicaragua’s Sandinista government – and the U.S. press corps was already bending to the propaganda pressures of a right-wing Republican administration.

Looking back at CIA cables from the early-to-mid-1980s, you can already see the bias dripping from the analytical reports. Any drug accusation against the leftist Sandinistas was accepted without skepticism and usually with strong exaggeration, while the opposite occurred with evidence of Contra cocaine smuggling; then there was endless quibbling and smearing of sources.

So, to put these reports in anything close to an accurate focus, you would need special lenses to correct for all the politicized distortions. Yet, the U.S. news media, which itself was under intense pressure not to appear “liberal,” worsened the Reagan administration’s fun-house reflection of reality and attacked any dissident journalist who wouldn’t go along.

Thus, Americans heard a lot about how the evil Sandinistas were trying to “poison” America’s youth with cocaine, although there was not a single interception of a drug shipment from Nicaragua during the Sandinista reign, except for one planeload of cocaine that the United States flew into and out of Nicaraguan in a clumsy “sting” operation.

On the other hand, substantial evidence of Contra-related cocaine shipments out of Costa Rica and Honduras was kept from the American people with Reagan’s Justice Department and CIA intervening to head off investigations and thus prevent embarrassing disclosures. The chief role of the big newspapers in this upside-down world was to heap ridicule on anyone who told the truth.

During that time frame of the early-to-mid-1980s, the patterns were set for CIA analysts to advance their careers (by giving the president what he wanted) and mainstream journalists to protect theirs (by accepting propaganda). By 2002-2003, these patterns had become deeply engrained, leaving almost no one to protect the American people from a new round of falsehoods – aimed at Iraq.

Though I was not in touch with Webb in the last months of his life in 2004, I have always wondered if he saw this connection between his own valiant efforts to correct the historical record about Contra-cocaine trafficking in 1996 and the victory of lies over truth regarding Iraq’s WMD in 2002-2003.

In the weeks before Webb’s suicide, there also was the intervening fact of George W. Bush’s reelection – and with it, the dashed expectation that the CIA analysts and the mainstream journalists who played along with the Iraq-WMD fabrications might face some serious accountability. At the moment when Webb picked up his father’s pistol and put it to his head, there must have appeared little hope that anything would change.

Indeed, we are now seeing yet another replay of this systematic distortion of information, this time regarding Iran and its alleged nuclear weapons program. Any tidbit of information against Iran is exaggerated, while exculpatory data is downplayed or ignored.

So, it may be timely again to recount what happened to Gary Webb and to reflect on the dangers of allowing this corrupt disinformation system to press ahead unchecked.

Dark Alliance

For me, the tragic story of Gary Webb began in 1996 when he was working on his “Dark Alliance” series for the San Jose Mercury News. He called me at my home in Arlington, Virginia, because, in 1985, I and my Associated Press colleague Brian Barger had been the first journalists to reveal the scandal of Reagan’s Nicaraguan Contras funding themselves in part by collaborating with drug traffickers.

Webb explained that he had come across evidence that one Contra-connected drug conduit had funneled cocaine into Los Angeles, where it helped fuel the early crack epidemic. Unlike our AP stories a decade earlier — which focused on the Contras helping to ship cocaine from Central America into the United States — Webb said his series would examine what happened to the Contra cocaine after it reached the streets of Los Angeles and other cities.

Besides asking about my recollections of the Contras and their cocaine smuggling, Webb wanted to know why the scandal never gained any real traction in the U.S. national news media. I explained that the ugly facts of the drug trafficking ran up against a determined U.S government campaign to protect the Contras’ image. In the face of that resistance, I said, the major publications — the likes of the New York Times and the Washington Post — had chosen to attack the revelations and those behind them rather than to dig up more evidence.

Webb sounded confused by my account, as if I were telling him something that was foreign to his personal experience, something that just didn’t compute. I had a sense of his unstated questions: Why would the prestige newspapers of American journalism behave that way? Why wouldn’t they jump all over a story that important and that sexy, about the CIA working with drug traffickers?

I took a deep breath, sensing that he had no idea of the personal danger he was about to confront. Well, he would have to learn that for himself, I thought. It surely wasn’t my place to warn a journalist away from a significant story just because it carried risks.

So, I simply asked Webb if he had the strong support of his editors. He assured me that he did. I said their backing would be crucial once his story was out. He sounded perplexed, again, as if he didn’t know what to make of my cautionary tone. I wished him the best of luck, thinking that he would need it.

The Safe Route

When I hung up, I wasn’t sure that the Mercury News would really press ahead with the story, considering how the big national news outlets had dismissed and ridiculed the notion that President Reagan’s beloved Contras had included a large number of drug traffickers.

It never seemed to matter how much evidence there was. It was much easier — and safer, career-wise — for Washington journalists to reject incriminating testimony against the Contras, especially when it came from other drug traffickers and from disgruntled Contras. Even U.S. law-enforcement officials who discovered evidence were disparaged as overzealous and congressional investigators were painted as partisan.

In 1985, as we were preparing our first AP story on this topic, Barger and I knew that the evidence of Contra-cocaine involvement was overwhelming. We had a broad range of sources both inside the Contra movement and within the U.S. government, people with no apparent ax to grind who had described the cocaine-smuggling problem.

One source was a field agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA); another was a senior official on Reagan’s National Security Council (NSC) who told me that he had read a CIA report about how a Contra unit based in Costa Rica had used cocaine profits to buy a helicopter.

However, after our AP story was published in December 1985, we came under attack from the right-wing Washington Times. That was followed by dismissive stories in the New York Times and the Washington Post. The notion that the Contras, whom President Reagan had likened to America’s Founding Fathers, could be implicated in the drug trade was simply unthinkable.

Yet, it was always odd to me that many of the same newspapers had no problem accepting the fact that the CIA-backed Afghan mujahedeen were involved in the heroin trade, but bristled at the thought that the CIA-backed Nicaraguan Contras might be cut from the same cloth.

A key difference, which I learned both from personal experience and from documents that surfaced during the Iran-Contra scandal, was that Reagan had assigned a young group of ambitious intellectuals such as Elliott Abrams and Robert Kagan to oversee the Contra war.

These neoconservatives worked with old-line anticommunists from the Cuban-American community, such as Otto Reich, and CIA propagandists, such as Walter Raymond Jr., to aggressively protect the Contras’ image. And the Contras were always on the edge between getting congressional funding or having it cut off.

So, that combination — the propaganda skills of Reagan’s Contra-support team and the fragile consensus for continuing Reagan’s pet Contra war — meant that any negative publicity about the Contras would be met with a fierce counterattack.

Going to Editors

The neoconservatives were also bright, well-schooled, and skilled in their manipulation of language and information, a process they privately called “perception management.” They proved adept, too, at ingratiating themselves with senior editors at major news outlets.

By the mid-1980s, these patterns had become well-worn in Washington. If a journalist dug up a story that put the Contras in a negative light, he or she could expect the Reagan administration’s propaganda team to make contact with a senior editor or bureau chief and lodge a complaint, apply some pressure, and often offer up some dirt about the offending journalist.

Also, many news executives in that time frame were sympathetic toward Reagan’s hard-line foreign policy, especially after the humiliations of the Vietnam War and the Iranian revolution. Supporting U.S. initiatives abroad — or at least not allowing your reporters to undercut those policies — was seen as patriotic.

At the New York Times, executive editor Abe Rosenthal was one of the news media’s most influential neoconservatives, declaring that he was determined to steer the newspaper back to “the center,” by which he meant to the right.

At AP, general manager Keith Fuller was known to be a strong Reagan supporter and his preferences were sometimes expressed forcefully to AP’s Washington bureau where I worked. At the Washington Post and Newsweek (where I went to work in 1987), there was also a strong sense that Reagan-era scandals should not reach the president, that it would not be “good for the country.”

In other words, on the issue of Contra drug trafficking, there was a confluence of interests between the Reagan administration, which was determined to protect the Contras’ public image, and senior news executives, who wanted to adopt a “patriotic” posture after convincing themselves that the country shouldn’t endure another wrenching battle over wrongdoing by a Republican president.

The popular image of courageous editors standing up for their reporters in the face of government pressure was not the reality, especially not where the Contras were concerned.

Reverse Rewards

So, instead of a process that outsiders might imagine — where journalists who dug out tough stories got rewarded — the actual system worked in the opposite way. The careerists in the news business quickly grasped that the smart play when it came to the Contras was either to be a booster or at least to pooh-pooh evidence of the Contras’ brutality or drug traffickers.

The same rules applied to congressional investigators. Anyone who pried into the dark corners of the Nicaraguan Contra war faced ridicule, as happened to Democratic Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts when he followed up the early AP stories with a courageous investigation that discovered more ties between cocaine traffickers and the Contras.

When his Contra-cocaine report was released in 1989, its findings were greeted with yawns and smirks. News articles were buried deep inside the major newspapers and the stories focused more on alleged flaws in his investigation than on his revelations.

For his hard work, Newsweek summed up the prevailing “conventional wisdom” on Kerry by calling him a “randy conspiracy buff.” Being associated with breaking the Contra-cocaine story was also regarded as a black mark on my own career.

To function in this upside-down world, where reality and perception often clashed – and perception usually won – the big news outlets developed a kind of cognitive dissonance that could accept two contradictory positions.

On one level, the news outlets did accept the undeniable reality that some of the Contras and their backers, including the likes of Panamanian General Manuel Noriega, were implicated in the drug trade, but then simultaneously treated this reality as a conspiracy theory.

Squaring the Circle

Only occasionally did a major news outlet seek to square this circle, such as during Noriega’s drug-trafficking trial in 1991 when U.S. prosecutors called as a witness Colombian Medellín cartel kingpin Carlos Lehder, who — along with implicating Noriega — testified that the cartel had given $10 million to the Contras, an allegation first unearthed by Sen. Kerry.

“The Kerry hearings didn’t get the attention they deserved at the time,” a Washington Post editorial on Nov. 27, 1991, acknowledged. “The Noriega trial brings this sordid aspect of the Nicaraguan engagement to fresh public attention.”

However, the Post offered its readers no explanation for why Kerry’s hearings had been largely ignored, with the Post itself a leading culprit in this journalistic misfeasance. Nor did the Post and the other leading newspapers use the opening created by the Noriega trial to do anything to rectify their past neglect.

And, everything quickly returned to the status quo in which the desired perception of the noble Contras trumped the clear reality of their criminal activities.

So, from 1991 until 1996, the Contra-cocaine scandal remained a disturbing story not just about the skewed moral compass of the Reagan administration but also about how the U.S. news media had lost its way.

The scandal was a dirty secret that was best kept out of public view and away from a thorough discussion. After all, the journalistic careerists who had played along with the U.S. government’s Contra defenders had advanced inside their media corporations. As good team players, they had moved up to be bureau chiefs and other news executives. They had no interest in revisiting one of the big stories that they had downplayed as a prerequisite for their success.

Pariahs

Meanwhile, those journalists who had exposed these national security crimes mostly saw their careers sink or at best slide sideways. We were regarded as “pariahs” in our profession. We were “conspiracy theorists,” even though our journalism had proven to be correct again and again.

The Post’s admission that the Contra-cocaine scandal “didn’t get the attention it deserved” didn’t lead to any soul-searching inside the U.S. news media, nor did it result in any rehabilitation of the careers of the reporters who had tried to put a spotlight on this especially vile secret.

As for me, after losing battle after battle with my Newsweek editors (who despised the Iran-Contra scandal that I had worked so hard to expose), I departed the magazine in June 1990 to write a book (called Fooling America) about the decline of the Washington press corps and the parallel rise of the new generation of government propagandists.

I was also hired by PBS Frontline to investigate whether there had been a prequel to the Iran-Contra scandal — whether those arms-for-hostage deals in the mid-1980s had been preceded by contacts between Reagan’s 1980 campaign staff and Iran, which was then holding 52 Americans hostage and essentially destroying Jimmy Carter’s reelection hopes. [For more on that topic, see Robert Parry’s Secrecy & Privilege and America’s Stolen Narrative.]

Then, in 1995, frustrated by the pervasive triviality that had come to define American journalism — and acting on the advice of and with the assistance of my oldest son Sam — I turned to a new medium and launched the Internet’s first investigative news magazine, known as Consortiumnews.com. The Web site became a way for me to put out well-reported stories that my former mainstream colleagues seemed determined to ignore or mock.

So, when Gary Webb called me that day in 1996, I knew that he was charging into some dangerous journalistic terrain, though he thought he was simply pursuing a great story. After his call, it struck me that perhaps the only way for the Contra-cocaine story to ever get the attention that it deserved was for someone outside the Washington media culture to do the work.

When Webb’s “Dark Alliance” series finally appeared in late August 1996, it initially drew little attention. The major national news outlets applied their usual studied indifference to a topic that they had already judged unworthy of serious attention.

It was also clear that the media careerists who had climbed up their corporate ladders by accepting the conventional wisdom that the Contra-cocaine story was a conspiracy theory weren’t about to look back down and admit that they had contributed to a major journalistic failure to inform and protect the American public.

Hard to Ignore

But Webb’s story proved hard to ignore. First, unlike the work that Barger and I did for AP in the mid-1980s, Webb’s series wasn’t just a story about drug traffickers in Central America and their protectors in Washington. It was about the on-the-ground consequences, inside the United States, of that drug trafficking, how the lives of Americans were blighted and destroyed as the collateral damage of a U.S. foreign policy initiative.

In other words, there were real-life American victims, and they were concentrated in African-American communities. That meant the ever-sensitive issue of race had been injected into the controversy. Anger from black communities spread quickly to the Congressional Black Caucus, which started demanding answers.

Secondly, the San Jose Mercury News, which was the local newspaper for Silicon Valley, had posted documents and audio on its state-of-the-art Internet site. That way, readers could examine much of the documentary support for the series.

It also meant that the traditional “gatekeeper” role of the major newspapers — the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times — was under assault. If a regional paper like the Mercury News could finance a major journalistic investigation like this one, and circumvent the judgments of the editorial boards at the Big Three, then there might be a tectonic shift in the power relations of the U.S. news media. There could be a breakdown of the established order.

This combination of factors led to the next phase of the Contra-cocaine battle: the “get-Gary-Webb” counterattack. The first major shot against Webb and his “Dark Alliance” series did not come from the Big Three but from the rapidly expanding right-wing news media, which was in no mood to accept the notion that some of President Reagan’s beloved Contras were drug traffickers. That would have cast a shadow over the Reagan Legacy, which the Right was elevating to mythic status.

It fell to Rev. Sun Myung Moon’s right-wing Washington Times to begin the anti-Webb vendetta. Moon, a South Korean theocrat who fancied himself the new Messiah, had founded his newspaper in 1982 partly to protect Ronald Reagan’s political flanks and partly to ensure that he had powerful friends in high places. In the mid-1980s, the Washington Times went so far as to raise money to assist Reagan’s Contra “freedom fighters.”

Self-Interested Testimony

To refute Webb’s three-part series, the Washington Times turned to some ex-CIA officials, who had participated in the Contra war, and quoted them denying the story. Soon, the Washington Post, the New York Times, and the Los Angeles Times were lining up behind the Washington Times to trash Webb and his story.

On Oct. 4, 1996, the Washington Post published a front-page article knocking down Webb’s series, although acknowledging that some Contra operatives did help the cocaine cartels.

The Post’s approach was twofold, fitting with the national media’s cognitive dissonance on the topic of Contra cocaine: first, the Post presented the Contra-cocaine allegations as old news — “even CIA personnel testified to Congress they knew that those covert operations involved drug traffickers,” the Post sniffed — and second, the Post minimized the importance of the one Contra smuggling channel that Webb had highlighted in his series, saying that it had not “played a major role in the emergence of crack.”

A Post sidebar story dismissed African-Americans as prone to “conspiracy fears.”

Next, the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times weighed in with lengthy articles castigating Webb and “Dark Alliance.” The big newspapers made much of the CIA’s internal reviews in 1987 and 1988 — almost a decade earlier — that supposedly had cleared the spy agency of any role in Contra-cocaine smuggling.

But the CIA’s cover-up began to weaken on Oct. 24, 1996, when CIA Inspector General Frederick Hitz conceded before the Senate Intelligence Committee that the first CIA probe had lasted only12 days, and the second only three days. He promised a more thorough review.

Mocking Webb

Webb, however, had already crossed over from being a serious journalist to a target of ridicule. Influential Post media critic Howard Kurtz mocked Webb for saying in a book proposal that he would explore the possibility that the Contra war was primarily a business to its participants. “Oliver Stone, check your voice mail,” Kurtz chortled.

However, Webb’s suspicion was no conspiracy theory. Indeed, White House aide Oliver North’s chief Contra emissary, Robert Owen, had made the same point in a March 17, 1986, message about the Contras leadership. “Few of the so-called leaders of the movement . . . really care about the boys in the field,” Owen wrote. “THIS WAR HAS BECOME A BUSINESS TO MANY OF THEM.” [Emphasis in original.]

In other words, Webb was right and Kurtz was wrong, even Oliver North’s emissary had reported that many Contra leaders treated the conflict as “a business.” But accuracy had ceased to be relevant in the media’s hazing of Gary Webb.

In another double standard, while Webb was held to the strictest standards of journalism, it was entirely all right for Kurtz — the supposed arbiter of journalistic integrity who was also featured on CNN’s Reliable Sources — to make judgments based on ignorance. Kurtz would face no repercussions for mocking a fellow journalist who was factually correct.

The Big Three’s assault — combined with their disparaging tone — had a predictable effect on the executives of the Mercury News. As it turned out, Webb’s confidence in his editors had been misplaced. By early 1997, executive editor Jerry Ceppos, who had his own corporate career to worry about, was in retreat.

On May 11, 1997, Ceppos published a front-page column saying the series “fell short of my standards.” He criticized the stories because they “strongly implied CIA knowledge” of Contra connections to U.S. drug dealers who were manufacturing crack cocaine. “We did not have enough proof that top CIA officials knew of the relationship,” Ceppos wrote.

Ceppos was wrong about the proof, of course. At AP, before we published our first Contra-cocaine article in 1985, Barger and I had known that the CIA and Reagan’s White House were aware of the Contra-cocaine problem.

However, Ceppos had recognized that he and his newspaper were facing a credibility crisis brought on by the harsh consensus delivered by the Big Three, a judgment that had quickly solidified into conventional wisdom throughout the major news media and inside Knight-Ridder, Inc., which owned the Mercury News. The only career-saving move – career-saving for Ceppos even if career-destroying for Webb – was to jettison Webb and his journalism.

A ‘Vindication’

The big newspapers and the Contras’ defenders celebrated Ceppos’s retreat as vindication of their own dismissal of the Contra-cocaine stories. In particular, Kurtz seemed proud that his demeaning of Webb now had the endorsement of Webb’s editor.

Ceppos next pulled the plug on the Mercury News’ continuing Contra-cocaine investigation and reassigned Webb to a small office in Cupertino, California, far from his family. Webb resigned from the paper in disgrace.

For undercutting Webb and other Mercury News reporters working on the Contra-cocaine investigation, Ceppos was lauded by the American Journalism Review and was given the 1997 national Ethics in Journalism Award by the Society of Professional Journalists.

While Ceppos won raves, Webb watched his career collapse and his marriage break up. Still, Gary Webb had set in motion internal government investigations that would bring to the surface long-hidden facts about how the Reagan administration had conducted the Contra war.

The CIA published the first part of Inspector General Hitz’s findings on Jan. 29, 1998. Though the CIA’s press release for the report criticized Webb and defended the CIA, Hitz’s Volume One admitted that not only were many of Webb’s allegations true but that he actually understated the seriousness of the Contra-drug crimes and the CIA’s knowledge of them.

Hitz conceded that cocaine smugglers played a significant early role in the Contra movement and that the CIA intervened to block an image-threatening 1984 federal investigation into a San Francisco–based drug ring with suspected ties to the Contras, the so-called “Frogman Case.”

After Volume One was released, I called Webb (whom I had met personally since his series was published). I chided him for indeed getting the story “wrong.” He had understated how serious the problem of Contra-cocaine trafficking had been.

It was a form of gallows humor for the two of us, since nothing had changed in the way the major newspapers treated the Contra-cocaine issue. They focused only on the press release that continued to attack Webb, while ignoring the incriminating information that could be found in the body of the report. All I could do was highlight those admissions at Consortiumnews.com, which sadly had a much, much smaller readership than the Big Three.

Looking the Other Way

The major U.S. news media also looked the other way on other startling disclosures.

On May 7, 1998, for instance, Rep. Maxine Waters, a California Democrat, introduced into the Congressional Record a Feb. 11, 1982, letter of understanding between the CIA and the Justice Department. The letter, which had been requested by CIA Director William Casey, freed the CIA from legal requirements that it must report drug smuggling by CIA assets, a provision that covered both the Nicaraguan Contras and the Afghan mujahedeen.

In other words, early in those two covert wars, the CIA leadership wanted to make sure that its geopolitical objectives would not be complicated by a legal requirement to turn in its client forces for drug trafficking.

The next break in the long-running Contra-cocaine cover-up was a report by the Justice Department’s Inspector General Michael Bromwich.

Given the hostile climate surrounding Webb’s series, Bromwich’s report also opened with criticism of Webb. But, like the CIA’s Volume One, the contents revealed new details about government wrongdoing. According to evidence cited by Bromwich, the Reagan administration knew almost from the outset of the Contra war that cocaine traffickers permeated the paramilitary operation. The administration also did next to nothing to expose or stop the crimes.

Bromwich’s report revealed example after example of leads not followed, corroborated witnesses disparaged, official law-enforcement investigations sabotaged, and even the CIA facilitating the work of drug traffickers.

The report showed that the Contras and their supporters ran several parallel drug-smuggling operations, not just the one at the center of Webb’s series. The report also found that the CIA shared little of its information about Contra drugs with law-enforcement agencies and on three occasions disrupted cocaine-trafficking investigations that threatened the Contras.

As well as depicting a more widespread Contra-drug operation than Webb had understood, the Justice Department report provided some important corroboration about a Nicaraguan drug smuggler, Norwin Meneses, who was a key figure in Webb’s series.

Bromwich cited U.S. government informants who supplied detailed information about Meneses’s drug operation and his financial assistance to the Contras. For instance, Renato Pena, a money-and-drug courier for Meneses, said that in the early 1980s the CIA allowed the Contras to fly drugs into the United States, sell them, and keep the proceeds.

Pena, who was the northern California representative for the CIA-backed Nicaraguan Democratic Force (FDN) Contra army, said the drug trafficking was forced on the Contras by the inadequate levels of U.S. government assistance.

DEA Troubles

The Justice Department report also disclosed repeated examples of the CIA and U.S. embassies in Central America discouraging DEA investigations, including one into Contra-cocaine shipments moving through the international airport in El Salvador.

Inspector General Bromwich said secrecy trumped all. “We have no doubt that the CIA and the U.S. Embassy were not anxious for the DEA to pursue its investigation at the airport,” he wrote.

Bromwich also described the curious case of how a DEA pilot helped a CIA asset escape from Costa Rican authorities in 1989 after the man, American farmer John Hull, had been charged in connection with Contra-cocaine trafficking.

Hull’s ranch in northern Costa Rica had been the site of Contra camps for attacking Nicaragua from the south. For years, Contra-connected witnesses also said Hull’s property was used for the transshipment of cocaine en route to the United States, but those accounts were brushed aside by the Reagan administration and disparaged in major U.S. newspapers.

Yet, according to Bromwich’s report, the DEA took the accounts seriously enough to prepare a research report on the evidence in November 1986. In it, one informant described Colombian cocaine off-loaded at an airstrip on Hull’s ranch. The drugs were then concealed in a shipment of frozen shrimp and transported to the United States.

The alleged Costa Rican shipper was Frigorificos de Puntarenas, a firm controlled by Cuban-American Luis Rodriguez. Like Hull, however, Frigorificos had friends in high places. In 1985-86, the State Department had selected the shrimp company to handle $261,937 in non-lethal assistance earmarked for the Contras.

Hull also remained a man with powerful protectors. Even after Costa Rican authorities brought drug charges against him, influential Americans, including Rep. Lee Hamilton, D-Indiana, demanded that Hull be let out of jail pending trial. Then, in July 1989 with the help of a DEA pilot – and possibly a DEA agent – Hull managed to fly out of Costa Rica to Haiti and then to the United States. [See Consortiumnews.com’s “John Hull’s Great Escape.”]

Despite these new disclosures, the big newspapers still showed no inclination to read beyond the criticism of Webb in the press release and the executive summary.

Major Disclosures

By fall 1998, Washington was obsessed with President Bill Clinton’s Monica Lewinsky sex scandal, which made it easier to ignore even more stunning Contra-cocaine disclosures in the CIA’s Volume Two, published on Oct. 8, 1998.

In the report, CIA Inspector General Hitz identified more than 50 Contras and Contra-related entities implicated in the drug trade. He also detailed how the Reagan administration had protected these drug operations and frustrated federal investigations throughout the 1980s.

According to Volume Two, the CIA knew the criminal nature of its Contra clients from the start of the war against Nicaragua’s leftist Sandinista government. The earliest Contra force, called the Nicaraguan Revolutionary Democratic Alliance (ADREN) or the 15th of September Legion, had chosen “to stoop to criminal activities in order to feed and clothe their cadre,” according to a June 1981 draft of a CIA field report.

According to a September 1981 cable to CIA headquarters, two ADREN members made the first delivery of drugs to Miami in July 1981. ADREN’s leaders included Enrique Bermúdez and other early Contras who would later direct the major Contra army, the CIA-organized FDN which was based in Honduras, along Nicaragua’s northern border.

Throughout the war, Bermúdez remained the top Contra military commander. The CIA later corroborated the allegations about ADREN’s cocaine trafficking, but insisted that Bermúdez had opposed the drug shipments to the United States that went ahead nonetheless.

The truth about Bermúdez’s supposed objections to drug trafficking, however, was less clear. According to Hitz’s Volume One, Bermúdez enlisted Norwin Meneses, a large-scale Nicaraguan cocaine smuggler and a key figure in Webb’s series, to raise money and buy supplies for the Contras.

Volume One had quoted a Meneses associate, another Nicaraguan trafficker named Danilo Blandón, who told Hitz’s investigators that he and Meneses flew to Honduras to meet with Bermúdez in 1982. At the time, Meneses’s criminal activities were well-known in the Nicaraguan exile community. But Bermúdez told the cocaine smugglers that “the ends justify the means” in raising money for the Contras.

After the Bermúdez meeting, Contra soldiers helped Meneses and Blandón get past Honduran police who briefly arrested them on drug-trafficking suspicions. After their release, Blandón and Meneses traveled on to Bolivia to complete a cocaine transaction.

There were other indications of Bermúdez’s drug-smuggling tolerance. In February 1988, another Nicaraguan exile linked to the drug trade accused Bermúdez of participation in narcotics trafficking, according to Hitz’s report. After the Contra war ended, Bermúdez returned to Managua, Nicaragua, where he was shot to death on Feb. 16, 1991. The murder has never been solved.

The Southern Front

Along the Southern Front, the Contras’ military operations in Costa Rica on Nicaragua’s southern border, the CIA’s drug evidence centered on the forces of Edén Pastora, another top Contra commander. But Hitz discovered that the U.S. government may have made the drug situation worse, not better.

Hitz revealed that the CIA put an admitted drug operative — known by his CIA pseudonym “Ivan Gomez” — in a supervisory position over Pastora. Hitz reported that the CIA discovered Gomez’s drug history in 1987 when Gomez failed a security review on drug-trafficking questions.

In internal CIA interviews, Gomez admitted that in March or April 1982, he helped family members who were engaged in drug trafficking and money laundering. In one case, Gomez said he assisted his brother and brother-in-law in transporting cash from New York City to Miami. He admitted that he “knew this act was illegal.”

Later, Gomez expanded on his admission, describing how his family members had fallen $2 million into debt and had gone to Miami to run a money-laundering center for drug traffickers. Gomez said “his brother had many visitors whom [Gomez] assumed to be in the drug trafficking business.” Gomez’s brother was arrested on drug charges in June 1982. Three months later, in September 1982, Gomez started his CIA assignment in Costa Rica.

Years later, convicted drug trafficker Carlos Cabezas alleged that in the early 1980s, Ivan Gomez was the CIA agent in Costa Rica who was overseeing drug-money donations to the Contras. Gomez “was to make sure the money was given to the right people [the Contras] and nobody was taking . . . profit they weren’t supposed to,” Cabezas stated publicly.

But the CIA sought to discredit Cabezas at the time because he had trouble identifying Gomez’s picture and put Gomez at one meeting in early 1982 before Gomez started his CIA assignment.

While the CIA was able to fend off Cabezas’s allegations by pointing to these discrepancies, Hitz’s report revealed that the CIA was nevertheless aware of Gomez’s direct role in drug-money laundering, a fact the agency hid from Sen. Kerry in his 1987 investigation.

Cocaine Coup

There was also more to know about Gomez. In November 1985, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) learned from an informant that Gomez’s two brothers had been large-scale cocaine importers, with one brother arranging shipments from Bolivia’s infamous drug kingpin Roberto Suarez.

Suarez already was known as a financier of right-wing causes. In 1980, with the support of Argentina’s hard-line anticommunist military regime, Suarez bankrolled a coup in Bolivia that ousted the elected left-of-center government. The violent putsch became known as the Cocaine Coup because it made Bolivia the region’s first narco-state.

By protecting cocaine shipments headed north, Bolivia’s government helped transform Colombia’s Medellín cartel from a struggling local operation into a giant corporate-style business for delivering cocaine to the U.S. market.

Flush with cash in the early 1980s, Suarez invested more than $30 million in various right-wing paramilitary operations, including the Contra forces in Central America, according to U.S. Senate testimony by an Argentine intelligence officer, Leonardo Sanchez-Reisse.

In 1987, Sanchez-Reisse said the Suarez drug money was laundered through front companies in Miami before going to Central America. There, other Argentine intelligence officers — veterans of the Bolivian coup — trained the Contras in the early 1980s, even before the CIA arrived to first assist with the training and later take over the Contra operation from the Argentines.

Inspector General Hitz added another piece to the mystery of the Bolivian-Contra connection. One Contra fund-raiser, Jose Orlando Bolanos, boasted that the Argentine government was supporting his Contra activities, according to a May 1982 cable to CIA headquarters. Bolanos made the statement during a meeting with undercover DEA agents in Florida. He even offered to introduce them to his Bolivian cocaine supplier.

Despite all this suspicious drug activity centered around Ivan Gomez and the Contras, the CIA insisted that it did not unmask Gomez until 1987, when he failed a security check and confessed his role in his family’s drug business. The CIA official who interviewed Gomez concluded that “Gomez directly participated in illegal drug transactions, concealed participation in illegal drug transactions, and concealed information about involvement in illegal drug activity,” Hitz wrote.

Protecting Gomez

But senior CIA officials still protected Gomez. They refused to refer the Gomez case to the Justice Department, citing the 1982 agreement that spared the CIA from a legal obligation to report narcotics crimes by people collaborating with the CIA who were not formal agency employees.

Gomez was an independent contractor who worked for the CIA but was not officially on staff. The CIA eased Gomez out of the agency in February 1988, without alerting law enforcement or the congressional oversight committees.

When questioned about the case nearly a decade later, one senior CIA official who had supported the gentle treatment of Gomez had second thoughts. “It is a striking commentary on me and everyone that this guy’s involvement in narcotics didn’t weigh more heavily on me or the system,” the official acknowledged to Hitz’s investigators.

A Medellín drug connection arose in another section of Hitz’s report, when he revealed evidence suggesting that some Contra trafficking may have been sanctioned by Reagan’s NSC. The protagonist for this part of the Contra-cocaine mystery was Moises Nunez, a Cuban-American who worked for Oliver North’s NSC Contra-support operation and for two drug-connected seafood importers, Ocean Hunter in Miami and Frigorificos De Puntarenas in Costa Rica.

Frigorificos De Puntarenas was created in the early 1980s as a cover for drug-money laundering, according to sworn testimony by two of the firm’s principals — Carlos Soto and Medellín cartel accountant Ramon Milian Rodriguez. (It was also the company implicated by a DEA informant in moving cocaine from John Hull’s ranch to the United States.)

Drug allegations were swirling around Moises Nunez by the mid-1980s. Indeed, his operation was one of the targets of my and Barger’s AP investigation in 1985. Finally reacting to these suspicions, the CIA questioned Nunez about his alleged cocaine trafficking on March 25, 1987. He responded by pointing the finger at his NSC superiors.

“Nunez revealed that since 1985, he had engaged in a clandestine relationship with the National Security Council,” Hitz reported, adding: “Nunez refused to elaborate on the nature of these actions, but indicated it was difficult to answer questions relating to his involvement in narcotics trafficking because of the specific tasks he had performed at the direction of the NSC. Nunez refused to identify the NSC officials with whom he had been involved.”

After this first round of questioning, CIA headquarters authorized an additional session, but then senior CIA officials reversed the decision. There would be no further efforts at “debriefing Nunez.”

Hitz noted that “the cable [from headquarters] offered no explanation for the decision” to stop the Nunez interrogation. But the CIA’s Central American Task Force chief Alan Fiers Jr. said the Nunez-NSC drug lead was not pursued “because of the NSC connection and the possibility that this could be somehow connected to the Private Benefactor program [the Contra money handled by North] a decision was made not to pursue this matter.”

Joseph Fernandez, who had been the CIA’s station chief in Costa Rica, confirmed to congressional Iran-Contra investigators that Nunez “was involved in a very sensitive operation” for North’s “Enterprise.” The exact nature of that NSC-authorized activity has never been divulged.

At the time of the Nunez-NSC drug admissions and his truncated interrogation, the CIA’s acting director was Robert Gates, who nearly two decades later became President George W. Bush’s second secretary of defense, a position he retained under President Barack Obama.

Drug Record

The CIA also worked directly with other drug-connected Cuban-Americans on the Contra project, Hitz found. One of Nunez’s Cuban-American associates, Felipe Vidal, had a criminal record as a narcotics trafficker in the 1970s. But the CIA still hired him to serve as a logistics coordinator for the Contras, Hitz reported.

The CIA also learned that Vidal’s drug connections were not only in the past. A December 1984 cable to CIA headquarters revealed Vidal’s ties to Rene Corvo, another Cuban-American suspected of drug trafficking. Corvo was working with Cuban anticommunist Frank Castro, who was viewed as a Medellín cartel representative within the Contra movement.

There were other narcotics links to Vidal. In January 1986, the DEA in Miami seized 414 pounds of cocaine concealed in a shipment of yucca that was going from a Contra operative in Costa Rica to Ocean Hunter, the company where Vidal (and Moises Nunez) worked. Despite the evidence, Vidal remained a CIA employee as he collaborated with Frank Castro’s assistant, Rene Corvo, in raising money for the Contras, according to a CIA memo in June 1986.

By fall 1986, Sen. Kerry had heard enough rumors about Vidal to demand information about him as part of his congressional inquiry into Contra drugs. But the CIA withheld the derogatory information in its files. On Oct. 15, 1986, Kerry received a briefing from the CIA’s Alan Fiers Jr., who didn’t mention Vidal’s drug arrests and conviction in the 1970s.

But Vidal was not yet in the clear. In 1987, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Miami began investigating Vidal, Ocean Hunter, and other Contra-connected entities. This prosecutorial attention worried the CIA. The CIA’s Latin American division felt it was time for a security review of Vidal. But on Aug. 5, 1987, the CIA’s security office blocked the review for fear that the Vidal drug information “could be exposed during any future litigation.”

As expected, the U.S. Attorney’s Office did request documents about “Contra-related activities” by Vidal, Ocean Hunter, and 16 other entities. The CIA advised the prosecutor that “no information had been found regarding Ocean Hunter,” a statement that was clearly false. The CIA continued Vidal’s employment as an adviser to the Contra movement until 1990, virtually the end of the Contra war.

FDN Connections

Hitz also revealed that drugs tainted the highest levels of the Honduran-based FDN, the largest Contra army. Hitz found that Juan Rivas, a Contra commander who rose to be chief of staff, admitted that he had been a cocaine trafficker in Colombia before the war.

The CIA asked Rivas, known as El Quiche, about his background after the DEA began suspecting that Rivas might be an escaped convict from a Colombian prison. In interviews with CIA officers, Rivas acknowledged that he had been arrested and convicted of packaging and transporting cocaine for the drug trade in Barranquilla, Colombia. After several months in prison, Rivas said, he escaped and moved to Central America, where he joined the Contras.

Defending Rivas, CIA officials insisted that there was no evidence that Rivas engaged in trafficking while with the Contras. But one CIA cable noted that he lived an expensive lifestyle, even keeping a $100,000 Thoroughbred horse at the Contra camp. Contra military commander Bermúdez later attributed Rivas’s wealth to his ex-girlfriend’s rich family. But a CIA cable in March 1989 added that “some in the FDN may have suspected at the time that the father-in-law was engaged in drug trafficking.”

Still, the CIA moved quickly to protect Rivas from exposure and possible extradition to Colombia. In February 1989, CIA headquarters asked that the DEA take no action “in view of the serious political damage to the U.S. Government that could occur should the information about Rivas become public.” Rivas was eased out of the Contra leadership with an explanation of poor health. With U.S. government help, he was allowed to resettle in Miami. Colombia was not informed about his fugitive status.

Another senior FDN official implicated in the drug trade was its chief spokesman in Honduras, Arnoldo Jose “Frank” Arana.

The drug allegations against Arana dated back to 1983 when a federal narcotics task force put him under criminal investigation because of plans “to smuggle 100 kilograms of cocaine into the United States from South America.” On Jan. 23, 1986, the FBI reported that Arana and his brothers were involved in a drug-smuggling enterprise, although Arana was not charged.

Arana sought to clear up another set of drug suspicions in 1989 by visiting the DEA in Honduras with a business associate, Jose Perez. Arana’s association with Perez, however, only raised new alarms. If “Arana is mixed up with the Perez brothers, he is probably dirty,” the DEA said.

Drug Airlines

Through their ownership of an air services company called SETCO, the Perez brothers were associated with Juan Matta-Ballesteros, a major cocaine kingpin connected to the murder of a DEA agent, according to reports by the DEA and U.S. Customs. Hitz reported that someone at the CIA scribbled a note on a DEA cable about Arana stating: “Arnold Arana . . . still active and working, we [CIA] may have a problem.”

Despite its drug ties to Matta-Ballesteros, SETCO emerged as the principal company for ferrying supplies to the Contras in Honduras. During congressional Iran-Contra hearings, FDN political leader Adolfo Calero testified that SETCO was paid from bank accounts controlled by Oliver North. SETCO also received $185,924 from the State Department for ferrying supplies to the Contras in 1986. Furthermore, Hitz found that other air transport companies used by the Contras were implicated in the cocaine trade as well.

Even FDN leaders suspected that they were shipping supplies to Central America aboard planes that might be returning with drugs. Mario Calero, the chief of Contra logistics, grew so uneasy about one air freight company that he notified U.S. law enforcement that the FDN only chartered the planes for the flights south, not the return flights north.

Hitz found that some drug pilots simply rotated from one sector of the Contra operation to another. Donaldo Frixone, who had a drug record in the Dominican Republic, was hired by the CIA to fly Contra missions from 1983 to 1985. In September 1986, however, Frixone was implicated in smuggling 19,000 pounds of marijuana into the United States. In late 1986 or early 1987, he went to work for Vortex, another U.S.-paid Contra supply company linked to the drug trade.

By the time that Hitz’s Volume Two was published in fall 1998, the CIA’s defense against Webb’s series had shrunk to a fig leaf: that the CIA did not conspire with the Contras to raise money through cocaine trafficking. But Hitz made clear that the Contra war took precedence over law enforcement and that the CIA withheld evidence of Contra crimes from the Justice Department, Congress, and even the CIA’s own analytical division.

Besides tracing the evidence of Contra-drug trafficking through the decade-long Contra war, the inspector general interviewed senior CIA officers who acknowledged that they were aware of the Contra-drug problem but didn’t want its exposure to undermine the struggle to overthrow Nicaragua’s leftist Sandinista government.

According to Hitz, the CIA had “one overriding priority: to oust the Sandinista government. . . . [CIA officers] were determined that the various difficulties they encountered not be allowed to prevent effective implementation of the Contra program.” One CIA field officer explained, “The focus was to get the job done, get the support and win the war.”

Hitz also recounted complaints from CIA analysts that CIA operations officers handling the Contras hid evidence of Contra-drug trafficking even from the CIA’s analysts.

Because of the withheld evidence, the CIA analysts incorrectly concluded in the mid-1980s that “only a handful of Contras might have been involved in drug trafficking.” That false assessment was passed on to Congress and to major news organizations — serving as an important basis for denouncing Gary Webb and his “Dark Alliance” series in 1996.

CIA Admission

Although Hitz’s report was an extraordinary admission of institutional guilt by the CIA, it went almost unnoticed by the big American newspapers.

On Oct. 10, 1998, two days after Hitz’s Volume Two was posted on the CIA’s Web site, the New York Times published a brief article that continued to deride Webb but acknowledged the Contra-drug problem may have been worse than earlier understood. Several weeks later, the Washington Post weighed in with a similarly superficial article. The Los Angeles Times never published a story on the release of Hitz’s Volume Two.

In 2000, the House Intelligence Committee grudgingly acknowledged that the stories about Reagan’s CIA protecting Contra drug traffickers were true. The committee released a report citing classified testimony from CIA Inspector General Britt Snider (Hitz’s successor) admitting that the spy agency had turned a blind eye to evidence of Contra-drug smuggling and generally treated drug smuggling through Central America as a low priority.

“In the end the objective of unseating the Sandinistas appears to have taken precedence over dealing properly with potentially serious allegations against those with whom the agency was working,” Snider said, adding that the CIA did not treat the drug allegations in “a consistent, reasoned or justifiable manner.”

The House committee — then controlled by Republicans — still downplayed the significance of the Contra-cocaine scandal, but the panel acknowledged, deep inside its report, that in some cases, “CIA employees did nothing to verify or disprove drug trafficking information, even when they had the opportunity to do so. In some of these, receipt of a drug allegation appeared to provoke no specific response, and business went on as usual.”

Like the release of Hitz’s report in 1998, the admissions by Snider and the House committee drew virtually no media attention in 2000 — except for a few articles on the Internet, including one at Consortiumnews.com.

Unrepentant Press

Because of this misuse of power by the Big Three newspapers — choosing to conceal their own journalistic failings regarding the Contra-cocaine scandal and to protect the Reagan administration’s image — Webb’s reputation was never rehabilitated.

After his original “Dark Alliance” series was published in 1996, Webb had been inundated with attractive book offers from major publishing houses, but once the vilification began, the interest evaporated. Webb’s agent contacted an independent publishing house, Seven Stories Press, which had a reputation for publishing books that had been censored, and it took on the project.

After Dark Alliance: The CIA, the Contras, and the Crack Cocaine Explosion was published in 1998, I joined Webb in a few speaking appearances on the West Coast, including one packed book talk at the Midnight Special bookstore in Santa Monica, California. For a time, Webb was treated as a celebrity on the American Left, but that gradually faded.

In our interactions during these joint appearances, I found Webb to be a regular guy who seemed to be holding up fairly well under the terrible pressure. He had landed an investigative job with a California state legislative committee. He also felt some measure of vindication when CIA Inspector General Hitz’s reports came out.

However, Webb never could overcome the pain caused by his betrayal at the hands of his journalistic colleagues, his peers. In the years that followed, Webb was unable to find decent-paying work in his profession — the conventional wisdom remained that he had somehow been exposed as a journalistic fraud. His state job ended; his marriage fell apart; he struggled to pay bills; and he was faced with a move out of a modest rental house near Sacramento, California.

On Dec. 9, 2004, the 49-year-old Webb typed out suicide notes to his ex-wife and his three children; laid out a certificate for his cremation; and taped a note on the door telling movers — who were coming the next morning — to instead call 911. Webb then took out his father’s pistol and shot himself in the head. The first shot was not lethal, so he fired once more.

Even with Webb’s death, the big newspapers that had played key roles in his destruction couldn’t bring themselves to show Webb any mercy. After Webb’s body was found, I received a call from a reporter for the Los Angeles Times who knew that I was one of Webb’s few journalistic colleagues who had defended him and his work.

I told the reporter that American history owed a great debt to Gary Webb because he had forced out important facts about Reagan-era crimes. But I added that the Los Angeles Times would be hard-pressed to write an honest obituary because the newspaper had not published a single word on the contents of Hitz’s final report, which had largely vindicated Webb.

To my disappointment but not my surprise, I was correct. The Los Angeles Times ran a mean-spirited obituary that made no mention of either my defense of Webb, nor the CIA’s admissions in 1998. The obituary was republished in other newspapers, including the Washington Post.

In effect, Webb’s suicide enabled senior editors at the Big Three newspapers to breathe a little easier — one of the few people who understood the ugly story of the Reagan administration’s cover-up of the Contra-cocaine scandal and the U.S. media’s complicity was now silenced.

To this day, none of the journalists or media critics who participated in the destruction of Gary Webb has paid a price for their actions. None has faced the sort of humiliation that Webb had to endure. None had to experience that special pain of standing up for what is best in the profession of journalism — taking on a difficult story that seeks to hold powerful people accountable for serious crimes — and then being vilified by your own colleagues, the people that you expected to understand and appreciate what you had done.

On the contrary, many were rewarded with professional advancement and lucrative careers. For instance, Howard Kurtz still hosts the CNN program, “Reliable Sources,” which lectures journalists on professional standards. He is described in the program’s bio as “the nation’s premier media critic.”

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his new book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com).

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #5 



A secret pact between
the Dept. of Justice
and the CIA:

The CIA was released from the requirement to
report suspected drug trafficking by
CIA agents and operatives.

In March, 1998, the CIA Inspector General testified that there had existed a secret agreement between CIA and the Justice Department, wherein "during the years 1982 to 1995, CIA did not have to report the drug trafficking by its assets to the Justice Department."

http://ciadrugs.homestead.com/files/cia-doj-agreement.html

http://ciadrugs.homestead.com/files/findings.html

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #6 
http://articles.latimes.com/1990-10-30/local/me-3410_1_william-french-smith



William French Smith, 73, Dies; Reagan Adviser and Atty. Gen.
October 30, 1990|EDWARD J. BOYER | TIMES STAFF WRITER

William French Smith, Ronald Reagan's personal lawyer and a key adviser who placed his conservative stamp on federal policy during his term as U.S. attorney general, died Monday in Los Angeles.

Smith, 73, died with his family at his bedside at the Kenneth Norris Jr. Cancer Center at County-USC Medical Center, where he had been admitted Oct. 2, a hospital spokeswoman said.


A corporate attorney and senior partner in Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Los Angeles' largest law firm, Smith was an original member of the "kitchen cabinet" that helped guide Reagan from Hollywood to Sacramento and the White House.

As attorney general, Smith "brought talent, wisdom and the highest integrity to the Department of Justice," Reagan said Monday. "Our nation was indeed fortunate to have a person of his excellence and patriotism in the cabinet. And we were made better as a country because of Bill's work.

"More than a colleague, Bill was a valued and trusted friend and adviser. I often sought his wise counsel throughout my years in public life, and I was fortunate to have him at my side."

As attorney general from 1981-85, Smith was a key architect of the Reagan Administration's conservative shift on issues affecting domestic policy, including civil rights. While acknowledging that the Administration had been accused of "abandoning the federal civil rights effort," he maintained that the Justice Department under his leadership vigorously enforced civil rights laws.

But more than half the lawyers in the Justice Department's civil rights division signed a letter of protest after Smith reversed an 11-year-old policy that gave the Internal Revenue Service the power to deny tax exemptions to private schools.

Smith "served the United States with great distinction," Atty. Gen. Dick Thornburgh said.

U.S. Solicitor General Kenneth Starr, Smith's former law partner and his chief of staff in the Justice Department, said Smith was "an immensely gifted lawyer with marvelous sound and wise judgment (who was) unfailingly kind and thoughtful. He was always willing to listen to people, to hear people out.

"It was one of the ironies of his tenure that it was characterized by such far-reaching and profound change in the direction of the federal legal system . . . done in a quintessentially quiet, prudent and lawyerlike fashion."

After meeting Reagan in 1963, Smith became the future President's personal lawyer, confidant and business adviser. He has been credited with engineering Reagan's rise to wealth at a time when the former actor's primary income was royalties from movies.

Smith, drug store magnate Justin Dart, auto dealer Holmes Tuttle and oil, entertainment and real estate entrepreneur Jack Wrather were among the group of California millionaires known as the "kitchen cabinet."

They rallied to Reagan after hearing him give a nationally broadcast speech in support of Barry Goldwater's 1964 presidential candidacy. The group persuaded Reagan to run for California governor in 1966, and remained his most important political advisers and fund-raisers. Tuttle once remarked that during Reagan's eight years in Sacramento, the group "never made a move" without first asking: "Has this been cleared with Bill Smith?"


Born Aug. 26, 1917, in Wilton, N.H., Smith was a direct descendant of Uriah Oakes, the fourth president of Harvard College. His father, who died when Smith was 6, was president of the Mexican Telephone and Telegraph Co., whose headquarters were in Boston.

Smith graduated summa cum laude from UC Berkeley in 1939 and earned his law degree at Harvard in 1942. After World War II duty as an officer in the Naval Reserve, Smith broke away from his New England roots and settled in California. He had decided, he said, that his life "wasn't going to be dictated to by my ancestors."

He joined Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in 1946 and eventually headed its labor department, where he represented the firms blue-chip corporate clients in collective bargaining negotiations.

In 1968, Reagan appointed Smith to the University of California Board of Regents, where he reflected the then-governor's hard-line views toward Vietnam War protesters. He opposed demands that the university discontinue nuclear weapons research, and he resisted efforts to force the university to divest itself of stock in countries doing business in South Africa.

Fred Dutton, a former official in the John F. Kennedy Administration who served as a UC regent with Smith, said the former attorney general's philosophy "is that a small central establishment of a few people who have proven successful should run the rest of our lives."

But other liberals on the board credited Smith with being free of ideological rigidity and willing to listen to all sides of any argument.

Once at the helm in the Justice Department, Smith systematically set about dismantling policies that had been in place for a generation.

In 1981, he summarized the direction in which he was taking the department:


"We have firmly enforced the law that forbids federal employees from striking. We have opposed the distortion of the meaning of equal protection by courts that mandate counterproductive busing and quotas. We have helped to select appointees to the federal bench who understand the meaning of judicial restraint."

One of those appointees--one he took great pride in recruiting--is Sandra Day O'Connor, the first woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Smith was president of the California Chamber of Commerce from 1974 to 1975. He was a director of Pacific Telephone & Telegraph of San Francisco, Crocker National Bank and Crocker National Corp., Pacific Mutual Life Insurance of Los Angeles, Pacific Lighting Corp., Jorgensen Steel Corp. and Pullman Inc. of Chicago.

Smith's first marriage ended in divorce. In 1964 he married his second wife, Jean Webb. In addition to his wife, he is survived by a daughter, Stephanie Smith Lorenzen; three sons, William, Scott and Gregory; a stepson, G. William Vaughan Jr.; a stepdaughter, Merry Vaughan Dunn, and seven grandchildren.

Funeral arrangements were incomplete.

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #7 
America’s “War on Drugs”: CIA- Recruited Mercenaries and Drug-Traffickers
By Michael Levine
Global Research, January 13, 2011
wanttoknow.info 13 January 2011
Region: USA
Theme: Intelligence
America's "War on Drugs": CIA- Recruited Mercenaries and Drug-Traffickers

When Nixon first declared war on drugs in 1971, there were fewer than 500,000 hard-core addicts in the nation, most of whom were addicted to heroin. Three decades later, despite the expenditure of $1 trillion in tax dollars, the number of hard-core addicts is shortly expected to exceed five million. Our nation has become the supermarket of the drug world, with a wider variety and bigger supply of drugs at cheaper prices than ever before. The problem now not only affects every town on the map, but it is difficult to find a family anywhere that is not somehow affected. (pp. 158, 159)

The Chang Mai factory the CIA prevented me from destroying was the source of massive amounts of heroin being smuggled into the US in the bodies and body bags of GIs killed in Vietnam. (p. 165)

My unit, the Hard Narcotics Smuggling Squad, was charged with investigating all heroin and cocaine smuggling through the Port of New York. My unit became involved in investigating every major smuggling operation known to law enforcement. We could not avoid witnessing the CIA protecting major drug dealers. Not a single important source in Southeast Asia was ever indicted by US law enforcement. This was no accident. Case after case was killed by CIA and State Department intervention and there wasn’t a damned thing we could do about it. CIA-owned airlines like Air America were being used to ferry drugs throughout Southeast Asia, allegedly to support our “allies.” CIA banking operations were used to launder drug money. (pp. 165, 166)

In 1972, I was assigned to assist in a major international drug case involving top Panamanian government officials who were using diplomatic passports to smuggle large quantities of heroin and other drugs into the US. The name Manuel Noriega surfaced prominently in the investigation. Surfacing right behind Noriega was the CIA to protect him from US law enforcement. As head of the CIA, Bush authorized a salary for Manuel Noriega as a CIA asset, while the dictator was listed in as many as 40 DEA computer files as a drug dealer. (pp. 166, 167)

The CIA and the Department of State were protecting more and more politically powerful drug traffickers around the world: the Mujihadeen in Afghanistan, the Bolivian cocaine cartels, the top levels of Mexican government, Nicaraguan Contras, Colombian drug dealers and politicians, and others. Media’s duties, as I experienced firsthand, were twofold: first, to keep quiet about the gush of drugs that was allowed to flow unimpeded into the US; second, to divert the public’s attention by shilling them into believing the drug war was legitimate by falsely presenting the few trickles we were permitted to indict as though they were major “victories,” when in fact we were doing nothing more than getting rid of the inefficient competitors of CIA assets. (pp. 166, 167)

On July 17, 1980, drug traffickers actually took control of a nation. Bolivia at the time [was] the source of virtually 100% of the cocaine entering the US. CIA-recruited mercenaries and drug traffickers unseated Bolivia’s democratically elected president, a leftist whom the US government didn’t want in power. Immediately after the coup, cocaine production increased massively, until it soon outstripped supply. This was the true beginning of the crack “plague.” (pp. 167, 168)

The CIA along with the State and Justice Departments had to combine forces to protect their drug-dealing assets by destroying a DEA investigation. How do I know? I was the inside source. I sat down at my desk in the American embassy and wrote the kind of letter that I never myself imagined ever writing. I detailed three pages typewritten on official US embassy stationary—enough evidence of my charges to feed a wolf pack of investigative journalists. I also expressed my willingness to be a quotable source. I addressed it directly to Strasser and Rohter, care of Newsweek. Two sleepless weeks later, I was still sitting in my embassy office staring at the phone. Three weeks later, it rang. It was DEA’s internal security. They were calling me to notify me that I was under investigation. I had been falsely accused of everything from black-marketing to having sex with a married female DEA agent. The investigation would wreak havoc with my life for the next four years. (pp. 168-171)

In one glaring case, an associate of mine was sent into Honduras to open a DEA office in Tegucigalpa. Within months he had documented as much as 50 tons of cocaine being smuggled into the US by Honduran military people who were supporting the Contras. This was enough cocaine to fill a third of US demand. What was the DEA response? They closed the office. (p. 175)

Sometime in 1990, US Customs intercepted a ton of cocaine being smuggled through Miami International Airport. A Customs and DEA investigation quickly revealed that the smugglers were the Venezuelan National Guard headed by General Guillen, a CIA “asset” who claimed that he had been operating under CIA orders and protection. The CIA soon admitted that this was true. If the CIA is good at anything, it is the complete control of American mass media. So secure are they in their ability to manipulate the mass media that they even brag about it in their own in-house memos. The New York Times had the story almost immediately in 1990 and did not print it until 1993. It finally became news that was “fit to print” when the Times learned that 60 Minutes also had the story and was actually going to run it. The highlight of the 60 Minutes piece is when the administrator of the DEA, Federal Judge Robert Bonner, tells Mike Wallace, “There is no other way to put it, Mike, [what the CIA did] is drug smuggling. It’s illegal [author's emphasis].” (pp. 188, 189)

The fact is – and you can read it yourself in the federal court records – that seven months before the attempt to blow up the World Trade Center in 1993, the FBI had a paid informant, Emad Salem, who had infiltrated the bombers and had told the FBI of their plans to blow up the twin towers. Without notifying the NYPD or anyone else, an FBI supervisor “fired” Salem, who was making $500 a week for his work. After the bomb went off, the FBI hired Salem back and paid him $1.5 million to help them track down the bombers. But that’s not all the FBI missed. When they finally did catch the actual bomber, Ramzi Yousef (a man trained with CIA funds during the Russia-Afghanistan war), the FBI found information on his personal computer about plans to use hijacked American jetliners as fuel-laden missiles. The FBI ignored this information, too. (p. 191)

Michael Levine is a 25-year veteran of the DEA turned best-selling author and journalist. His articles and interviews on the drug war have been published in numerous national newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and Esquire.

Learn about Mr. Levine’s books and radio show at http://www.expertwitnessradio.org.
http://www.globalresearch.ca/america-s-war-on-drugs-cia-recruited-mercenaries-and-drug-traffickers/22777

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #8 
http://www.scribd.com/doc/131231070/60-MINUTES-Head-of-DEA-Robert-Bonner-Says-CIA-Smuggled-Drugs


CBS News Transcripts 60 MINUTES November 21, 1993

HEADLINE: THE CIA'S COCAINE; CIA APPARENTLY BEHIND SHIPPING OF A TON OF COCAINE INTO THE US FROM VENEZUELA
BODY: THE CIA'S COCAINE
(When Mike Levine (DEA-retired) spoke with his former colleague at DEA, Annabelle Grimm regarding this case, he was told that "27 tons minimum" had entered the country)
MORLEY SAFER: A ton of cocaine--pure cocaine, worth hundreds of millions—is smuggled into the United States. Sound familiar? Not the way this ton of cocaine got here, according to what the former head of the Drug Enforcement Administration told Mike Wallace. This drug shipment got here courtesy of what he calls drug trafficking by the CIA, in partnership with the Venezuelan national guard. While rumors of CIA involvement in drug trafficking have circulated for years, no one in the US government has ever before publicly charged the CIA with this kind of wrongdoing. It is not the kind of accusation anyone in government would make without thinking long and hard.
MIKE WALLACE: Let me understand what you're saying. A ton of cocaine was smuggled into the United States of America by the Venezuelan national guard...
Judge ROBERT BONNER (Former Head, Drug Enforcement Administration): Well, they... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_C._Bonner
WALLACE: ...in cooperation with the CIA?
Judge BONNER: That's what--that's exactly what appears to have happened. (Footage of Wallace and Bonner walking)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) Until last month, Judge Robert Bonner was the head ofthe Drug Enforcement Administration, the DEA. And Judge Bonner explained to us that only the head of the DEA is authorized to approve the transportation of any illegal narcotics, like cocaine, into this country, even if the CIA is bringing it in.
Judge BONNER: Let me put it this way, Mike. If this has not been approved by DEA or an appropriate law-enforcement authority in the United States, then it's illegal. It's called drug trafficking. It's called drug smuggling.
WALLACE: So what you're saying, in effect, is the CIA broke the law; simple as that.
Judge BONNER: I don't think there's any other way you can rationalize around it, assuming, as I think we can, that there was some knowledge on the part of CIA. At least some participation in approving or condoning this to be done. (Footage of Wallace and Bonner; the CIA seal)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) Judge Bonner says he came to that conclusion after a two-year secret investigation conducted by the DEA's Office of Professional Responsibility, in cooperation with the CIA's own inspector general. And what reason did the CIA have for promoting this drug smuggling?
Judge BONNER: Well, the only rationale that's ever been offered is that that--this would lead to some valuable drug intelligence about the Colombian cartels. (Footage of a drug inspection; a ship; trucks; a building; General Ramon Guillen Davila)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) Over half of the Colombian drug cartel's cocaine crosses the border with Venezuela on its way to the United States and Europe. Back in the 1980s, the CIA was mandated by then-President Reagan to develop intelligence on the Colombian drug cartels. And so the CIA, with Venezuela's Guardia Nacional, or national guard, set up an undercover operation, a drug-smuggling operation in Venezuela that could handle the trans-shipment of the Colombian cartel's cocaine on its way to market.
The plan was to infiltrate the cartel, and it worked, for the CIA-national guard undercover operation quickly accumulated this cocaine, over a ton and a half that was smuggled from Colombia into Venezuela inside these trucks and then was stored here at the CIA-financed Counternarcotics Intelligence Center in Caracas. The center's commander and the CIA's man in Venezuela was national guard General Ramon Guillen Davila.

Ms. ANNABELLE GRIMM (Drug Enforcement Agency): I tried to work together with them. I was always aware that they were not telling me everything they were doing. (Footage of Grimm; a building; Mark McFarlin; a plane taking off)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) Annabelle Grimm was a DEA agent with 18 years' experience when she was made agent-in-charge in Caracas. And she says that the CIA station chief, James Campbell, and this man, Mark McFarlin, the CIA officer in charge at the center, told her that to keep the undercover smuggling operation credible, they had to keep the cartel happy, and the way to do that was simple: deliver their dope, untouched by US law enforcement, to the cartel's distributors, their dope dealers in the United States.
Ms. GRIMM: The CIA and the Guardia Nacional wanted to let cocaine go on into the traffic without doing anything. They wanted to let it come up to the United States, no surveillance, no nothing.
WALLACE: In other words, you weren't going to stop them in Miami or Houston or wherever. These drugs were simply going to go to the United States and then go into the traffic and eventually reach the streets.

Ms. GRIMM: That's what they wanted to do, yes. And we had very, very lengthy discussions. But I told them what the US law was and the fact that we could not do this.
WALLACE: So here you've got Jim Campbell, chief of station, who knows about this; Mark McFarlin, CIA officer, knows about this and are stimulating this--this business of sending what are uncontrolled deliveries of drugs--smuggling drugs into the United States, right?
Ms. GRIMM: Right.
WALLACE: Why in the world would they want to do that?
Ms. GRIMM: As they explained to me, that--this would enable them to gain the traffickers' confidence, keep their informant cool and it would result in future seizures of larger quantities of drugs. And also, they hoped to--I guess they thought they were going to get Pablo Escobar at the scene of the crime or something, which I found personally ludicrous.
WALLACE: But if Annabelle Grimm thought this was ludicrous, the CIA station chief, James Campbell, did not. He enlisted the assistance of CIA headquarters in Washington to get approval for the drug shipments. And his bosses at the CIA in Washington went over Annabelle Grimm's head, directly to her bosses at DEA headquarters in Washington.
Judge BONNER: They made this proposal and we said, 'No, no way. We will not permit this. It should not go forward.' And then, apparently, it went forward anyway. (Footage of Wallace and Bonner; a Guardia Nacional truck; inspectors)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) The joint DEA-CIA investigation we mentioned earlier confirmed that over a ton of cocaine made its way from the Counternarcotics Center in Caracas to the streets of the United States. And they discovered that at one point, General Guillen's national guard tried to ship 1,500 kilos at once.
Ms. GRIMM: They were not successful in that because apparently the package they had put together was too large. It wouldn't fit on the plane. (Footage of Guillen)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) General Guillen admits to the bungled operation. General RAMON GUILLEN DAVILA (Venezuelan Guardia Nacional): (Through interpreter) It was too big for the airplane door because the plane was a 707. WALLACE: The box was too big to get into the airplane, $ 30 million worth of cargo, drugs? All these officials--the Venezuelans, the Americans, the--the Colombians--all so stupid that they don't have a box that's small enough to fit inside their own airplane?
Gen. GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) The traffickers made a mistake with the plane. (Footage of Guillen)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) Is it possible that General Guillen was doing this on his own, without the knowledge of the CIA?
Ms. GRIMM: I would find it very difficult, for several reasons, to believe that they did not know what was going on. They built, they ran, they controlled that center. General Guillen and his officers didn't go to the bathroom without telling Mark McFarlin or the CIA what they were going to do. (Footage of traffic; a Colombia road sign; an airplane landing)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) The drug-smuggling operation finally unraveled nearly a year after Annabelle Grimm says she told the CIA and General Guillen that it was illegal to send drugs uncontrolled into the US. Then a shipment arrived in Miami's International Airport and was seized, coincidentally, by US Customs. Customs traced those drugs back to the Venezuelan national guard, but General Guillen told us that operation had been approved by US authorities.
Gen. GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) Look, what I see here is that there is a problem between the CIA and the DEA, and perhaps they are trying to find a fall guy, who is General Guillen. If I had anything to do with illegal drug trafficking, I wouldn't be sitting here talking to you. (Footage of Guillen; a document)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) General Guillen is right about one thing. He could travel to New York to talk to us about Judge Bonner's charges only because he had already been granted immunity from prosecution in that DEA-CIA inspector general's investigation. So we confronted the general with this document, a report from that investigation that reads like his confession. (Reading) 'Guillen lost his composure, and when directly confronted concerning his involvement in the unauthorized and illegal shipment of cocaine to the US, confesses.'
Gen. GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) Look, I say that that confession is not true. In that report, there are a lot of lies. It's useless. I have not confessed anywhere.
WALLACE: So you're clean?
Gen. GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) Clean until the last day God has for me. (Footage of Guillen; buildings; a document; McFarlin in a truck; a photograph of James Campbell; the CIA logo)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) So far there has been no legal action against General Guillen. As for the CIA officers? Well, Judge Bonner may believe that someone at the agency must have known, but the CIA and the US Department of Justice say they have discovered, quote, "No evidence of criminal wrongdoing."
However, the CIA did acknowledge to us that the investigation, quote, "Did reveal instances of poor judgment and management, leading to disciplinary actions for several CIA officers." Mark McFarlin, the CIA officer in charge of the Counternarcotics Center, resigned from the agency last year. We tried to talk to him, but he told us the CIA would take legal action against him if he violated his secrecy agreement with the agency. As for James Campbell, the CIA station chief, we learned he was brought back to the US and promoted, but then he retired. Campbell did tell us, quote, "I've devoted my life to my country and feel like a victim in this thing. This happened without our knowledge.
We were there to prevent it." While CIA headquarters declined to answer our questions on camera, off camera a CIA official involved in the Venezuelan cocaine operation did. We talked to some people at the CIA. They say, 'The DEA does the same thing all the time. They let drugs walk. They let drugs into the traffic, and look the other way to further a more important goal.'
Judge BONNER: It's absolutely untrue. And frankly it--maybe it displays the kind of ignorance that makes the CIA dangerous in this area. It is wrong for an agency of the US government to facilitate and participate in allowing drugs to reach the streets. And apparently--you know, if the--if the CIA doesn't understand that, then I--I would be concerned that this kind of incident could be repeated. (Footage of Wallace and Dennis DeConcini)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) The CIA advised us they had recently briefed the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Dennis DeConcini, and they urged us to talk with him, apparently believing he would defend the operation.
Senator DENNIS DeCONCINI (Senate Intelligence Committee): It was an operation that I don't think they should've been involved in.
WALLACE: No question, the drugs got in?
Sen. DeCONCINI: I don't doubt that the drugs got in here.
WALLACE: You'd think that maybe the agency would want to say, 'OK, we made a mistake.'

Sen. DeCONCINI: I think they made a mistake.
WALLACE: Yeah.
Sen. DeCONCINI: And I--you know, you hope when these mistakes are made that, hell, not too many more of them are, particularly when the mistake is a large quantity of substances like this that can kill people, and probably did. (Footage of Wallace and DeConcini)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) We asked the senator why no one in the CIA has been prosecuted for bringing in the drugs. Sen. DeCONCINI: It--you would seem to think there would be a good case there.
WALLACE: A case against?
Sen. DeCONCINI: Against an American who knew anything about it. But, you know, I've been a prosecutor, Mike, and you have to look at the case, convince a--a jury or a judge not to throw the case out. The Justice Department reviewed that and they decided not to prosecute these individuals from the agency. (Footage of the Venezuelan intelligence agency)
WALLACE: (Voiceover) And what about the vaunted intelligence gathered from the whole CIA anti-drug caper in Venezuela?
Judge BONNER: Well, let me tell you, I--first of all, I don't know of any. Because from what I know, no valuable intelligence of any kind was produced from this operation.
WALLACE: What intelligence was generated by the shipment of this 1,000 to 1,500 kilos, controlled or uncontrolled?
General GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) It was very positive.
WALLACE: Really? Who--who--who did you finger? What did you find out?
General GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) Right now, a truck driver and the truck that were trafficking drugs into Venezuela are under arrest. There was another truck and two similar van types were also caught.
WALLACE: So what you're saying is that you captured three or four or five truck drivers. I'm asking about intelligence in the United States that was generated by the actual shipment of these kilos into the United States.
General GUILLEN: (Through interpreter) Now whether or not here in the United States they arrested anyone or the intelligence gathered was useless, that is the responsibility of the Americans.
WALLACE: After speaking to us, General Guillen traveled to Miami, where federal agents found him and served him with a subpoena to appear before a newly revived grand jury investigation into the CIA's cocaine. But the word out of Venezuela is that the government there will not permit him to testify.
Ms. GRIMM: I look at that 1,000 kilos, at least that 1,000 kilos. I look at the fact--I mean, Mike, you're a taxpayer and that was US taxpayer money that built that center, that funded it, that maintained it. And I really take great exception to the fact that that 1,000 kilos came in funded by US taxpayer money and it hit the streets of the United States. I found that particularly appalling when you look at all the damaged lives that 1,000 kilos represents.
SAFER: And what happened to the tens of millions that were paid for the CIA's cocaine? Well, General Guillen insists he didn't get any of it. But Judge Bonner says one thing is certain, the Colombian cartel did. They got their money once the dope made it to our streets. Meanwhile, both the House and Senate Intelligence Oversight Committees continue to ask questions about what they call, quote, "the very serious charges surrounding the CIA's cocaine."


******
Watch The Video on retired DEA agent Mike Levine’s Youtube channel:
DEA Administrator Robert Bonner (Bonner later became a Federal Judge) "CIA are drug smugglers." - Federal Judge Bonner, head of DEA- You don't get better proof than this.”

CIA Drug Smuggling - The Real Body Bag Case. with Undercover DEA Agent Michael Levine (author of NY Times non-fiction bestseller DEEP COVER) being coopted by CIA in South East Asia. Also: DEA busts CIA smuggling ton of cocaine. Head of DEA Judge Robert Bonner Accuses CIA directly of being drug smugglers. You don't need more proof than this.

Here are Mike Levine’s comments on the video:
Uploaded on Feb 18, 2011
michaellevine53 8 months ago
The whole investigation conducted by DEA, revealed that they were only caught for one ton, after they had gotten away with 26 tons over the previous year. Check out some of our radio shows. Bottom line is they smuggled more dope than the Medellin Cartel
• in reply to TheUnknownGrower (Show the comment)
Synnek1 7 months ago
A Ton of "Cocaine"? More like: TONS! rofl! >;-)
michaellevine53 7 months ago
To be precise, a minimum of 27 tons...
.
michaellevine53 2 months ago
Mr. P:
I may have a problem posting the entire show on youtube, but we have used the soundtrack on radio shows that you can find on the web site for The Expert Witness Radio show.. During these shows we discussed the findings that CIA, in fact, was caught smuggling lge quantities of cocaine that the people named in this brilliant investigative piece "should" have been indicted. If this is not enough I will have my producer and co-host digitize the 60 Minute piece and put it up on that site
• in reply to MrPaulrael

michaellevine53 5 months ago
Thanks for the kind words my friend. The book was DEEP COVER, in which I accused the attorney general at the time, Edwin Meece, of blowing the cover of an undercover team while they were outside the US (in Mexico, Panama and Bolivia) and very vulnerable to kidnapping and death. Unlike the CIA officer Valery Plame who was safely ensconced in her DC office when her cover was blown. Her case was, I suppose political. I was accusing people of treason. as libelous as it gets, if not true...

michaellevine53 8 months ago
Katie:
My first lesson in this came, as I documented in THE BIG WHITE, when CIA betrayed both the American people and the Bolivian government that trusted us, by supporting the drug traffickers in the takeover of Bolivia in the now infamous Cocaine Coup. It was the bloodiest revolution in that poor country;s history and the beginning of the crack/cocaine epidemic in ours.
• in reply to Katie Nelson (Show the comment)
michaellevine53 9 months ago
Let's start by demanding indictments in THIS case; we have solid evidence and credible DEA witnesses including a federal judge. Why go off on a conspiratorial tangent if we can't get an indictment in a case of CIA getting caught actually smuggling massive amounts of cocaine into the nation they're supposed to protect? When I was boxing on a USAF boxing team my coach said "if you open a cut keep hitting it till they stop they fight or the guy bleeds all over you." I'm giving you the cut.
• 5
michaellevine53 9 months ago
my friend. Judge Bonner is still alive, so am I and so are the other DEA agents who appeared in the original 60 minute piece as witnesses detailing the case. the CIA agent who "masterminded" the smuggling of as much as 27 tons of cocaine into the US,(worse than Pablo Escobar) was named, and at the time was the CIA station chief of Venezuela. no one was prosecuted The reason i Posted it here is that , thanks to the use of taxpayer funds to manipulate media, few are aware of this scandal.
• 10 in reply to Ben Dover (Show the comment)
michaellevine53 1 year ago
My friend, this video is only a short excerpt of an extensive investigation conducted by 6"60 minutes", which in turn was based on a joint secret investigation conducted by CIA and DEA internal security. Which resulted in Judge Bonner, the head of DEA making this statement... What more do you need?
I suggest you read THE BIG WHITE LIE
And DEEP COVER for even more detailed proof
michaellevine53 1 year ago
I wrote about Noriega in "Deep Cover"-- A DEA and Customs undercover team was dealing with his people in Panama while he was still a CIA asset and protected by CIA. I don't think you will believe what happened unless you read the book and understand that every event was documented by secretly recorded audio and video. The book was a NY Times bestseller and Congress just pretended it didn't exist. Sadly, nothing has changed.
• 15
michaellevine53 1 year ago
You've got to remember that during operation Trifecta (the deep cover operation in the book), Carlos Salinas de Gortari's bodyguard, on hidden video, promised me a wide open border to traffic drugs from Mexico into the US, if we completed the 15 ton drug deal we were in the midst of...NAFTA was then on the table before Congress... Ergo a lot of powerful people in our government that wanted the operation to fail before the American people became aware of it..That IS the real story in Deep Cover
michaellevine53 1 year ago
The problem with answering your question is that it's the wrong question. It should by what logical reason would CIA have to be in bed with drug traffickers? First, is called "the junkie tax." CIA assets and black operations not funded by congress become self-funded via "licenses" to smuggle to the US. Two: There is no oversight of the CIA whatsoever, thus any "enterprising" officer can cut himself in on his asset's drug profits. If he get's caught, as in the 60 Minute piece, he's promoted.
michaellevine53 1 year ago
Where was congress? Great question. The book DEEP COVER was voted one of the most censored by the media books of the year, by BILL MOYERS "Project Censored." Off camera, Mr. Moyers told me it was "the best read and least talked about book between the beltways. (Wash. DC)." It was almost funny. Meaning Congress wanted badly to ignore the book and its charges... If we had a responsible Congress, there would be no CIA supported drug traffickers, and Mexico would not be in the fix its in now.
michaellevine53 1 year ago
In DEEP COVER, when you come to the part where the attorney general EDWIN MEECE, blows the cover of our undercover operation with a telephone call to the AG of Mexico (one of our targets) , WHILE the team was undercover in Bolivia, Panama and Mexico. Underline that passage, because the special interests have not changed.. Remember the book was a NEW YORK TIMES bestseller, and the charge would be libelous as hell were it not true. Then ask yourself why mainstream media ignored the claim.

michaellevine53 1 year ago
By the way. google it and you'll see that this past May, Evo Morales, the president of Bolivia held the Spanish translation of THE BIG WHITE LIE (La Guerra Falsa) up for it to be photographed by the world's press, proclaiming that it was the reason he had banned DEA from Bolivia. The mistake he made was that the book blamed CIA, not DEA. it described how CIA protection of top Bolivian drug traffickers helped them literally take over the Bolivian government during the "Cocaine Coup", 8/17/81.
michaellevine53 1 year ago
You seem pretty knowledgeable and more astute than most. If you get a hold of THE BIG WHITE LIE, which is about a buck or two on the internet, you'll see that the first time Crack cocaine was documented was from Sonia Atala, the woman Pablo Escobar called "The Queen of Cocaine." While undercover working with me in 1983, she spoke of "Pichicata" (smokeable cocaine base) and how it was wildly addictive to Bolivian street kids. My report to DEA predicted it hitting the streets of the US shortly.
michaellevine53 1 year ago
The fact is that Bonner didn't take a bullet, he was just ignored. CIA director (then) Woolsey toured mainstream media making the false claim that the drug smuggling resulted from "a joint DEA CIA operation gone wrong." The fact is that DEA had no part in the operations which was, as the judge said,"CIA drug smuggling." 60 Minutes was the ONLY member of mainstream media to tell the truth.. The rest did their customary penguin walk. What a shame.

michaellevine53 1 year ago
I did my own investigation including interviews with DEA people involved, before I went public on my radio show - the Expert Witness Show in NYC. The investigation revealed that as much as 27 tons of cocaine were shipped into the US by CIA before they were finally caught by US Customs. The CIA chief who ran it was named by 60 Minutes. No one was either prosecuted or lost their jobs, except for the DEA people who blew the whistle. With "protectors" like this who needs enemies?

Contact Mike Levine at:
http://www.expertwitnessradio.org








__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #9 
Quotes


"In my 30-year history in the Drug Enforcement Administration and related agencies, the major targets of my investigations almost invariably turned out to be working for the CIA."

--Dennis Dayle, former chief of DEA CENTAC.(Peter Dale Scott & Jonathan Marshall, Cocaine Politics: Drugs, Armies,and the CIA in Central America, Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991, pp. x-xi.)




"There is no question in my mind that people affiliated with, on the payroll of, and carrying the credentials of,the CIA were involved in drug trafficking while involved in support of the contras."

—Senator John Kerry, The Washington Post (1996).





"I have put thousands of Americans away for tens of thousands of years with less evidence for conspiracy than is available against Ollie North and CIA people...I personally was involved in a deep-cover case that went to the top of the drug world in three countries. The CIA killed it."
-
Former DEA Agent Michael Levine - CNBC-TV, October 8, 1996







"When this whole business of drug trafficking came out in the open in the Contras, the CIA gave a document to Cesar, Popo Chamorro and Marcos Aguado, too...""..They said this is a document holding them harmless, without any responsibility, for having worked in U.S.security..."

--Eden Pastora, Former ARDE Contra leader - November 26, 1996, speaking before the Senate Select Intelligence Committee on alleged CIA drug trafficking to fund Nicaraguan Contras in the 1980s





"I believe that elements working for the CIA were involved in bringing drugs into the country," "I know specifically that some of the CIA contract workers, meaning some of the pilots, in fact were bringing drugs into the U.S. and landing some of these drugs in government air bases. And I know so because I was told by someo f these pilots that in fact they had done that."

– Retired DEA agent Hector Berrellez on PBS Frontline. Berrellez was a supervisory agent on the Enrique Camarena murder investigation
.



"I do think it [was] a terrible mistake to say that
'We're going to allow drug trafficking to destroy American citizens'
as a consequence of believing that the contra effort was a higher priority."
-
Senator Robert Kerrey (D-NE)





A Sept. 26, 1984, Miami police intelligence report noted that money supporting contras being illegally trained inFlorida "comes from narcotics transactions." Every page of the report is stamped: "Record furnished toGeorge Kosinsky, FBI." Is Mr. Kosinsky's number missing from (Janet) Reno's rolodex?

– Robert Knightand Dennis Bernstein, 1996




"For decades, the CIA, the Pentagon, and secret organizations like Oliver North's Enterprise have been supporting and protecting the world's biggest drug dealers.... The Contras and some of their Central Americanallies ... have been documented by DEA as supplying ... at least 50 percent of our national cocaine consumption. They were the main conduit to the United States for Colombian cocaine during the 1980's. The rest of the drug supply ... came from other CIA-supported groups, such as DFS (the Mexican CIA) ... [and] other groups and/or individuals like Manual Noriega."

-- Michael Levine, The Big White Lie: The CIA and the Cocaine/Crack Epidemic





"To my great regret, the bureau (FBI) has told me that some of the people I identified as being involved in drug smuggling are present or past agents of the Central Intelligence Agency."

--Wanda Palacio’s 1987 sworn testimony before U.S. Sen. John Kerry's Senate Subcommittee on Narcotics and International Terrorism.



“I sat gape-mouthed as I heard the CIA Inspector General, testify that there has existed a secret agreement between CIA and the Justice Department, wherein "during the years 1982 to 1995, CIA did not have to report the drug trafficking its assets did to the Justice Department. To a trained DEA agent this literally means that the CIA had been granted a license to obstruct justice in our so-called war on drugs; a license that lasted - so CIA claims -from 1982 to 1995, a time during which Americans paid almost $150 billion in taxes to "fight" drugs.God, with friends like these, who needs enemies?”

- Former DEA Agent Michael Levine, March 23, 1998.




CIA ADMITS TO DEAL WITH JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO OBSTRUCT JUSTICE.“The CIA finally admitted, yesterday, in the New York Times no less, that they, in fact, did "work with" the Nicaraguan Contras while they had information that they were involved in cocaine trafficking to the United States. An action known to us court qualified experts and federal agents as Conspiracy to Import and Distribute Cocaine—a federal felony punishable by up to life in prison. To illustrate how us regular walking around, non CIA types are treated when we violate this law, while I was serving as a DEA supervisor in New York City, I put two New York City police officers in a federal prison for Conspiracy to distribute Cocaine when they looked the other way at their friend's drug dealing. We could not prove they earned a nickel nor that they helped their friend in any way, they merely did not do their duty by reporting him. They were sentenced to 10and 12 years respectively, and one of them, I was recently told, had committed suicide.”

- Former DEA Agent Michael Levine, September, 1998 from the article “IS ANYONE APOLOGIZING TO GARY WEBB?”




“After five witnesses testified before the U.S. Senate, confirming that John Hull—a C.I.A. operative and the lynch-pin of North's contra resupply operation—had been actively running drugs from Costa Rica to the U.S."under the direction of the C.I.A.," Costa Rican authorities arrested him. Hull then quickly jumped bail and fled to the U.S.—according to my sources—with the help of DEA, putting the drug fighting agency in the schizoid business of both kidnapping accused drug dealers and helping them escape…. The then-President of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias was stunned when he received letters from nineteen U.S. Congressman—including Lee Hamilton of Indiana, the Democrat who headed the Iran-contra committee—warning him "to avoid situations . . .that could adversely affect our relations."

-Former DEA Agent Michael Levine, September, 1998 from the article “I Volunteer to Kidnap Oliver North”




"Drug trafficking has permeated all political structures and has corrupted federal, state, and local officials. It has deformed the economy. It is a cancer that has generated financial and political dependence, which instead of producing goods, has created serious problems ultimately affecting honest businessmen. The Attorney General's office is unable to eradicate drug trafficking because government structures at all levels are corrupted."

-- Eduardo Valle, former adviser, Attorney General in Mexico





Dennis Dayle, former head of DEA's Centac, was asked the following question: "Enormously powerful criminal organizations are controlling many countries, and to a certain degree controlling the world, and controlling our lives.Your own U.S. government to some extent supports them, and is concealing this fact from you."Dennis Dayle's answer:
"I know that to be true. That is not conjecture. Experience, over the better part of my adult life, tells me that that is so. And there is a great deal of persuasive evidence.




"He (Former Congressman Bill Alexander - D. Ark.) made me privy to the depositions he took from three of the most credible witnesses in that project, which left absolutely
no doubt in my mind that the government of the United States was an active participant in one of the largest dope operations in the world.."

--
Former Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Jim Johnson





The Contras moved drugs not by the pound, not by the bags, but by the tons, by the cargo planeloads”

--Jack Blum, investigator for the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee, testimony under oath on Feb. 11, 1987






“… he was making millions, 'cos he had his own source of,… avenue for his own,..heroin.I'm sure we all knew it, but we tried to monitor it, because we controlled most of the pilots you see. We're giving him freedom of navigation into Thailand, into the bases, and we don't want him to get involved in moving, you know, this illicit traffic--O.K., silver bars and gold, O.K., but not heroin. What they would do is, they weren't going into Thailand, they were flying it in a big wet wing airplane that could fly for thirteen hours, a DC-3, and all the wings were filled with gas. They fly down to Pakse, then they fly over to Da Nang, and then the number two guy to President Thieu would receive it.”

–CIA Officer Anthony (“Tony Poe”) Poshepny May 17, 1988 PBS Frontline episode “Guns, Drugs, and the CIA”

(Poshepny was a legendary covert operations officer who had supervised the CIA’s secret war in Northern Laos during the 1960s and early 1970s. In the interview, Poshepny stated that the CIA had supplied air transport for the heroin shipments of their local ally, General Vang Pao, the only such on-the-record confirmation by a former CIA officer concerning agency involvement in the narcotics trade.)



"It is … believed by the FBI, SF, that Norwin Meneses was and still may be, an informant for the Central Intelligence Agency."
--CIA OIG report on Contra involvement in drug trafficking (ChIII, Pt2).
(Norwin Meneses was issued a visa and moved freely about the United States despite being listed in more than40 drug investigations over the two previous decades and being listed in an active indictment for narcotics. He has never been prosecuted in this country.)



“There is secret communication between CIA and members of the Congressional staff - one must keep in mind that Porter Goss, the chairman, is an ex CIA official- indicating that the whole hearing is just a smoke and mirror show so that the American people - particularly the Black community - can "blow off some steam"without doing any damage to CIA. The CIA has been assured that nothing real will be done, other than some embarrassing questions being asked.”

- Former DEA Agent Michael Levine, March 23, 1998. CIA ADMITS TO DEAL WITH JUSTICE DEPARTMENT TO OBSTRUCT JUSTICE.



"If you ask: In the process of fighting a war against the Sandinistas, did people connected with the US government open channels which allowed drug traffickers to move drugs to the United States, did they know the drug traffickers were doing it, and did they protect them from law enforcement? The answer to all those questions is yes.""We don't need to investigate [the CIA's role in Contra drug trafficking]. We already know. The evidence is there."--
Jack Blum, former Chief Counsel to John Kerry's Subcommittee on Narcotics and Terrorism in 1996 Senate Hearings



“Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the Department of Justice at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the Los Angeles Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities.According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central Los Angeles,around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Volume II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the Department of Justice, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles.”

--U.S. Congresswoman Maxine Waters – October 13. 1998, speaking on the floor of the US House of Representatives.





“My knowledge of all this comes from my time as British Ambassador in Uzbekistan. I … watched the Jeeps … bringing the heroin through from Afghanistan, en route to Europe. I watched the tankers of chemicals roaring into Afghanistan.

The four largest players in the heroin business are all senior members of the Afghan government – the government that our soldiers are fighting and dying to protect.” --Former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray,2007

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-469983/Britain-protecting-biggest-heroin-crop-time.html




This war with China … really seems to me so wicked as to be a national sin of the greatest possible magnitude, and it distresses me very deeply. Cannot any thing be done by petition or otherwise to awaken men’s minds to the dreadful guilt we are incurring? I really do not remember, in any history, of a war undertaken with such combined injustice and baseness. Ordinary wars of conquest are to me far less wicked, than to go to war in order to maintain smuggling, and that smuggling consisting in the introduction of a demoralizing drug, which the government of China wishes to keep out, and which we, for the lucre of gain, want to introduce by force; and in this quarrel are going to burn and slay in the pride of our supposed superiority. — Thomas Arnold to W. W. Hull, March 18, 1840

http://www.victorianweb.org/history/empire/opiumwars/opiumwars1.html





"Here's my problem. I think that if people in the government of the United States make a secret decision to sacrifice some portion of the American population in the form of ... deliberately exposing them to drugs, that is a terrible decision that should never be made in secret."

--Jack Blum, speaking before the October 1996 Senate Select Intelligence Committee on alleged CIA drug trafficking to fund Nicaraguan Contras in the 1980s, Chaired by Senator Arlen Specter.

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #10 
The Dark Stain From The Dark Alliance: Cautionary Tales From The Tragic Saga of Gary Webb
By H. "Corky" Johnson (about the author)
OpEdNews Op Eds 3/23/2013 at 13:22:19

http://www.opednews.com/articles/The-Dark-Stain-From-The-Da-by-H--Corky-Johnson-130323-304.html?show=votes#allcomments



corkjohn.com
H. "Corky" Johnson is a nationally award-winning investigative reporter/producer with more than 30 years of experience. His work has appeared in The Washington Post,on 60 Minutes and in many other media outlets.

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #11 
William French Smith Dies at 73; Reagan's First Attorney General
By RICHARD D. LYONS
Published: October 30, 1990


William French Smith, who served first as Ronald Reagan's personal lawyer in California and then accompanied him to Washington as his first Attorney General, died yesterday in Los Angeles. He was 73 years old.

A spokeswoman for the hospital of the University of Southern California, where he died after spending most of the month in treatment, said the cause of death was cancer.

As Attorney General from 1981 to 1984, Mr. Smith presided over profound changes in Federal policy on civil rights, antitrust enforcement and criminal justice. His espousal of conservative causes led to cries of outrage from civil rights and women's groups. But the overall effect of his efforts remains cloudy, since many changes were thwarted by Congress or the courts. Cool, Courteous, Professional

Mr. Smith's courteous demeanor, conservative clothes and gray hair made him look the very model of a lawyer. He fitted the professional role in other ways as well, graduating from Harvard Law School in 1942 and moving to the upper echelons of the law.
Ads by Google

Friends described Mr. Smith as an intensely private, almost passionless professional who was cool in difficult circumstances and whose judgment as a corporate lawyer was virtually impeccable.

Born Aug. 26, 1917, in Wilton, N.H., and raised in Boston, William French Smith was a member of an old New England family. Yet he was to say later that the call of the open spaces led to his enrollment in the University of California, Berkeley, from which he was graduated summa cum laude in 1939. He then returned east to get his law degree from Harvard.

Mr. Smith served as a naval officer in the Pacific during World War II, then went on to join the Los Angeles law firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, one of the largest in the area.

He eventually became a senior partner and a top administrator of the firm, which at one time had 250 lawyers. In the 'Kitchen Cabinet'

He met Mr. Reagan before the 1966 campaign for governor, eventually becoming a member of the influential circle of advisers who formed the new Governor's "kitchen cabinet."

When Mr. Reagan was elected President in 1980, he made Mr. Smith the 74th Attorney General. In the conservative tide that swept over Washington in the early days of Mr. Reagan's term, the Justice Department reversed its position on major civil rights questions, re-interpreted antitrust law, called on the Supreme Court to reassess landmark rulings on abortion and sought to enforce a system of secrecy oaths and censorship for Government officials with access to intelligence data.

Congress acted to block enforcement of the policy on secrecy, and the courts were not persuaded by many of the department's arguments on other issues.

On abortion, the Justice Department urged the Supreme Court to "accord heavy deference" to the preferences of states and cities that tried to restrict access to abortion. 'Bigness' Vs. 'Badness'

In a speech before the American Law Institute, Mr. Smith said the Justice Department would shift its emphasis away from the use of racial hiring quotas and mandatory busing and would seek other ways to curb job discrimination and school segregation.

In an outline of the Reagan Administration's antitrust philosophy, Mr. Smith said in 1981 that "bigness in business does not necessarillly mean badness" and he called some previous antitrust policies "misguided and mistaken." A national wave of mergers and acquisitions followed.

Mr. Smith also was credited with playing a major role in Mr. Reagan's nomination of Sandra Day O'Connor to be the first woman on the Supreme Court.

Mr. Smith is survived by his wife, Jean; three sons, William French Smith 3d, Scott Cameron Smith and Gregory Hale Smith; one daughter, Stephanie Oakes Lorenzen; a stepson, G. William Vaughan Jr.; a stepdaughter, Merry Vaughan Dunn, and seven grandchildren.

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #12 
http://www.the-peoples-forum.com/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=1566

Title: Gary Webb - 'DARK ALLIANCE: Crack Cocaine, the CIA, the Contras, & the Censors'
URL Source: http://blip.tv/file/834451
Post Date: 2008-06-21 12:07:37 by Robin
Keywords: None
Views: 1040
Comments: 6

Part 1/4 - Gary Webb and Martha Honey

"DARK ALLIANCE: Crack Cocaine, the CIA, the Contras, & the Censors", with Pulitzer Prize-Winner Gary Webb, Dennis Bernstein, & Martha Honey. Berkeley, CA - June 13, 1998. DVD available from: justicevision.org



Part 2/4 - Gary Webb and Martha Honey

"DARK ALLIANCE: Crack Cocaine, the CIA, the Contras, & the Censors", with Pulitzer Prize-Winner Gary Webb, Dennis Bernstein, & Martha Honey. Berkeley, CA - June 13, 1998. DVD available from: justicevision.org



Part 3/4 - Gary Webb and Martha Honey

"DARK ALLIANCE: Crack Cocaine, the CIA, the Contras, & the Censors", with Pulitzer Prize-Winner Gary Webb, Dennis Bernstein, & Martha Honey. Berkeley, CA - June 13, 1998. DVD available from: justicevision.org



Part 4/4 - Gary Webb and Martha Honey

"DARK ALLIANCE: Crack Cocaine, the CIA, the Contras, & the Censors", with Pulitzer Prize-Winner Gary Webb, Dennis Bernstein, & Martha Honey. Berkeley, CA - June 13, 1998. DVD available from: justicevision.org



Post Comment Private Reply Ignore Thread

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #13 
http://servingdope.com/what-about-a-5-million-bounty-for-the-cia-operative-who-allegedly-helped-kill-enrique-kiki-camarena/


        How About A $5 Million Bounty For The CIA Operative Who Allegedly Helped Kill Enrique “Kiki” Camarena?
07 Nov 2013/0 Comments/in News /by TheFrankNess
TheFrankNess
EX-CIA operative Félix Ismael Rodríguez

EX-CIA operative Félix Ismael Rodríguez

The U.S. Department of State has put up a $5 million reward for the capture of Rafael Caro-Quintero, the Mexican drug pin released from a federal prison in his country three months ago. A Mexican court freed the old school gangster on Aug. 9 after he served 28 years of a 40-year prison term for the 1985 kidnapping, torture and murder of U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena.

While Caro-Quintero may have escaped his conviction in Mexico, he is still wanted for felony murder, felony kidnapping, and a host of other criminal charges in California federal court.“Caro-Quintero was the organizer and mastermind of this atrocious act and his unexpected release from a Mexican prison was shocking and disturbing to law enforcement professionals on both sides of the border,”said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “The United States Government will utilize every tool available, including the State Department Narcotics Rewards Program, to bring Caro-Quintero to justice.”

However, don’t expect the U.S. government to put a bounty on Felix Ismael Rodriguez, a Cuban-born ex-CIA operative accused by three former federal agents of being Camarena’s real killer. Phil Jordan, former director of the El Paso Intelligence Center (EPIC); Hector Berrellez, former DEA agent, and Tosh Plumlee, a former CIA pilot, went on a media tour in October revealing their explosive allegations.

Jordan and Berrellez allege that Camarena was really targeted because his investigation had discovered U.S. intelligence operatives were involved in trafficking drugs from Colombia through Mexico to finance the arms for anti-communist rebels in Central America. Plumlee claims he knows the pilot who flew the plane Caro-Quintero used when the kingpin fled Mexico to Costa Rica to try to escape the arm of the law over Camarena’s murder.

“He was a CIA contract pilot, too,” Plumlee told Proceso Magazine. “And I stand by my previous statements that I flew airplanes out of Caro Quintero’s ranch in Mexico that carried drugs and guns.”

When Camarena was investigating the clandestine flights that ferried drugs from Central America to the United States, the Company called in Rodriguez, a Bay of Pigs veteran who played an intregal role in the United States’ dirty wars in Central America throughout the 1980s, according to Jordan and Berellez. Rodriguez is infamously known as the man who tracked down and killed revolutionary Che Guevara in Bolivia on Oct. 9, 1967.

In his interview with Proceso, Berrellez says:

“It was I who directed the investigation into the death of Camarena. During this investigation, we discovered that some members of a U.S. intelligence agency, who had infiltrated the DFS (the Mexican Federal Security Directorate), also participated in the kidnapping of Camarena. Two witnesses identified Felix Ismael Rodriguez. They (witnesses) were with the DFS and they told us that, in addition, he (Rodriguez) had identified himself s “U.S. intelligence.”

Yet, the DEA continues to stick to the official version that Caro-Quintero kidnapped, tortured and murdered Kiki Camarena in February of 1985, in retaliation for the U.S. agent having discovered his enormous marijuana farms and his processing center in the El Bufalo ranch.

According to the three ex-federal agents, Rodriguez also took a Honduran named Juan Mata Ballesteros, a person known to Colombian traffickers, with him to Mexico to obtain drugs in Colombia for the Guadalajara Cartel, then led by Caro-Quintero. The U.S. government allowed the Mexican drug trafficker to sell cocaine, marijuana and other drugs wherever he wanted, Jordan and Berrellez allege. Washington benefited, since it shared the profits.

The portion of the money received by the CIA — represented in Mexico by Rodriguez through Mata — was delivered to counterrevolutionaries in Nicaragua, La Contra, in the form of weapons and other military equipment. As Camarena dug deeper, he became a liability, assert Rodriguez’s accusers. That was his death sentence.

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
maynard

Registered:
Posts: 1,194
Reply with quote  #14 
"We were complicit as a country, in narcotics traffic at the same time as we're spending countless dollars in this country as we try to get rid of this problem. It's mind-boggling."

-- Senator John Kerry, Iran Contra Hearings, 1987



In 1972, I was assigned to assist in a major international drug case involving top Panamanian

__________________
A TAINTED DEAL http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/06/tainted-deal

 LA DEA; Murder of Kiki Camarena http://www.laweekly.com/news/how-a-dogged-la-dea-agent-unraveled-the-cias-alleged-role-in-the-murder-of-kiki-camarena-5750278  

"Several informed sources have told me that an appendix to this Report was removed at the instruction of the DOJ at the last minute. This appendix is reported to have information about a CIA officer, not agent or asset, but officer, based in the LA Station, who was in charge of Contra related activities. According to these sources, this individual was associated with running drugs to South Central L.A., around 1988. Let me repeat that amazing omission. The recently released CIA Report Vol II contained an appendix, which was pulled by the DOJ, that reported a CIA officer in the LA Station was hooked into drug running in South Central Los Angeles." Maxine Waters Oct, 1998
https://fas.org/irp/congress/1998_cr/h981013-coke.htm   

0
Previous Topic | Next Topic
Print
Reply

Easily create a Forum Website with Website Toolbox.

? ?
Copyright ? 2001-2004 Who?s A Rat. All Rights Reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.
?