Our Empire Documents. Part 3.


( …i,e, connections between the attacks and the empire.)

Since 1812… the US virtually exterminated the indigenous population, conquered half of Mexico, intervened violently in the surrounding region, conquered Hawaii and the Philippines (killing hundreds of thousands of Filipinos), and in the past half century particularly, extended its resort to force throughout much of the world. The number of victims is colossal. For the first time, the guns have been directed the other way. The same is true, even more dramatically, of Europe.

Interview of N. Chomsky, Radio B92, Belgrade. Sept. 2001.

The wealth of North America and Europe casts a huge shadow over the world, which has risen up to strike back.

G. Dauncey, Econews,, Oct, 2001.

The way the American people failed to grasp the situation…The general response was as if … "A benevolent democratic and peace living nation was brutally attacked by insane evil terrorists who hate the US …"

The editors, "After the attack…the war on terrorism", Monthly Review, Nov., 53.6, 2001, pp. 1-9, p.

On the 11 Sept 2001, 36,615 children also died through hunger. Here's the statistics...

Victims: 35,615 (according to FAO)


Special TV reports on the tragedy: NONE

Newspaper articles: NONE

Messages from heads of state: NONE

Appeals by organisations against the crisis: NONE

Solidarity messages: NONE

Minutes of silence: NONE

Homages to the victims: NONE

Special forums organised: NONE

Messages from the Pope: NONE

Stock exchange status: NORMAL

Alarm level: NONE

Mobilisation of armed forces: NONE

Media speculation over identity of perpetrators: NONE

Those probably responsible for crime: GLOBAL FREE-MARKETEERS

Relayed by: Viviane Lerner <vlerner@interpac.net>

Source: Mai-not network <mai-not@flora.org>

Subject: The other big tragedy of 11 September

What has this to do with this week's atrocities in America? If you travel among the impoverished majority of humanity, you understand that it has everything to do with it.

People are neither still, nor stupid. They see their independence compromised, their resources and land and the lives of their children taken away, and their accusing fingers increasingly point north: to the great enclaves of plunder and privilege. Inevitably, terror breeds terror and more fanaticism.

But how patient the oppressed have been.

John Pilger, "Inevitable ring to the unimaginable", Sept, 2001, Full article at:http://www.theherald.co.uk/news/archive/13-9-19101-0-24-43.html

Could it be that the …anger that led to the attacks has its taproot … in the US government's record of commitment and support to … to military and economic terrorism, insurgency, military dictatorship, religious bigotry and unimaginable genocide …?

Fearing an attack from America, one million citizens have fled from their homes and arrived at the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. The UN estimates that there are eight million Afghan citizens who need emergency aid. As supplies run out - food and aid agencies have been asked to leave - the BBC reports that one of the worst humanitarian disasters of recent times has begun to unfold.

In 1979, after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the CIA and Pakistan's ISI (Inter Services Intelligence) launched the largest covert operation in the history of the CIA. Their purpose was to harness the energy of Afghan resistance to the Soviets and expand it into a holy war, an Islamic jihad, which would turn Muslim countries within the Soviet Union against the communist regime and eventually destabilise it. When it began, it was meant to be the Soviet Union's Vietnam. It turned out to be much more than that. Over the years, through the ISI, the CIA funded and recruited almost 100,000 radical mojahedin from 40 Islamic countries as soldiers for America's proxy war. The rank and file of the mojahedin were unaware that their jihad was actually being fought on behalf of Uncle Sam.

The CIA continued to pour in money and military equipment, but the overheads had become immense, and more money was needed. The mojahedin ordered farmers to plant opium as a "revolutionary tax". The ISI set up hundreds of heroin laboratories across Afghanistan. Within two years of the CIA's arrival, the Pakistan-Afghanistan borderland had become the biggest producer of heroin in the world, and the single biggest source of the heroin on American streets. The annual profits, said to be between $100bn and $200bn, were ploughed back into training and arming militants.

In 1995, the Taliban - then a marginal sect of dangerous, hard-line fundamentalists - fought its way to power in Afghanistan. It was funded by the ISI, that old cohort of the CIA, and supported by many political parties in Pakistan. The Taliban unleashed a regime of terror. Its first victims were its own people, particularly women.

And what of America's trusted ally? Pakistan too has suffered enormously. The US government has not been shy of supporting military dictators who have blocked the idea of democracy from taking root in the country.

The US government, and no doubt governments all over the world, will use the climate of war as an excuse to curtail civil liberties, deny free speech, lay off workers, harass ethnic and religious minorities, cut back on public spending and divert huge amounts of money to the defence industry. To what purpose? President Bush can no more "rid the world of evil-doers" than he can stock it with saints. It's absurd for the US government to even toy with the notion that it can stamp out terrorism with more violence and oppression. Terrorism is the symptom, not the disease.

The September 11 attacks were a monstrous calling card from a world gone horribly wrong. The message may have been written by Bin Laden (who knows?) and delivered by his couriers, but it could well have been signed by the ghosts of the victims of America's old wars. The millions killed in Korea, Vietnam and Cambodia, the 17,500 killed when Israel - backed by the US - invaded Lebanon in 1982, the 200,000 Iraqis killed in Operation Desert Storm, the thousands of Palestinians who have died fighting Israel's occupation of the West Bank. And the millions who died, in Yugoslavia, Somalia, Haiti, Chile, Nicaragua, El Salvador, the Dominican Republic, Panama, at the hands of all the terrorists, dictators and genocidists whom the American government supported, trained, bankrolled and supplied with arms. And this is far from being a comprehensive list.

For a country involved in so much warfare and conflict, the American people have been extremely fortunate. The strikes on September 11 were only the second on American soil in over a century.

But who is Osama bin Laden really? … He has been sculpted from the spare rib of a world laid to waste by America's foreign policy: its gunboat diplomacy, its nuclear arsenal, its vulgarly stated policy of "full-spectrum dominance", its chilling disregard for non-American lives, its barbarous military interventions, its support for despotic and dictatorial regimes, its merciless economic agenda that has munched through the economies of poor countries like a cloud of locusts. Its marauding multinationals who are taking over the air we breathe, the ground we stand on, the water we drink, the thoughts we think.

(Re the US demand for Bin Laden to be handed over she says,…)

(While talks are on for the extradition of CEOs - can India put in a side request for the extradition of Warren Anderson of the US? He was the chairman of Union Carbide, responsible for the Bhopal gas leak that killed 16,000 people in 1984. We have collated the necessary evidence. It's all in the files. Could we have him, please?)

Extracts from THE ALGEBRA OF INFINITE JUSTICE, By Arundhati Roy,The Guardian - U.K. - Saturday September 29, 2001.

For further discussion of the hypocrisy of the reactions to this terrorist attack, see Cockburn, Corruptions of Empire, pp. 399-401.

Following their bombing of Iraq, the United States wound up with military bases in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and neighbouring countries in the Persian Gulf region.

Following their bombing of Yugoslavia, the United States wound up with military bases in Kosovo, Albania, Macedonia, Hungary,| Bosnia and Croatia.

Following their bombing of Afghanistan, the United States appears on course to wind up with military bases in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and perhaps elsewhere in the area.

The bombing, invasion and occupation of Afghanistan were conducted—apart from the primitive lashing out in blind revenge against...somebody—primarily for the purpose of ensuring the installation of a new government that would be sufficiently amenable to Washington's international objectives, including the siting of bases.

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000k, p. xviii

Speaking of Russia's problem with Chechnya in 1999, the US State Department's second in command, Strobe Talbott, urged Moscow to show "restraint and wisdom". Restraint, he said, "means taking action against real terrorists, but not using indiscriminate force that endangers innocents." (However in response to the Sept.11 events…) an American professor arrived at considerably more than 3,500 Afghan dead through early December, and still counting.

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000k, p. xii

The bin Laden network and others like them draw a lot of their support from the desperation and anger and resentment of the people of the region. …they’re angry about US support for undemocratic, repressive regimes in the region and U.S. insistence on blocking any efforts towards democratic openings. "

Uncertain source, W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000, p. 51.



In the 1960s Kennedy instituted "counterinsurgency, essentially the development of "special forces" trained in the use of terror to prevent peasants from supporting revolutionary groups. For decades the US School of the Americas has provided this training to large numbers of Laltin American police and military personnel, including many of the regions worst tyrants and torturers. As Monbiot says, "The US has been training terrorists at a camp in Georgia for years - and it's still at it."

G. Monbiot, The Guardian,Tuesday October 30, 2001.

. Training manuals include explicit material on the use of torture and terror.

M. McClintock, 1991, "American doctrine and counterinsurgent state terror", in A George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, Cambridge, Polity, 1991, p. 133.

For documentation on the campaign by School of the Americas Watch to have the School closed see www.soaw.org.

Military training gives the US access. Why, in the face of decades of terrible publicity, increasingly more militant protests, thousands of arrests, and sharply decreasing Congressional support, has the Pentagon clung to the School of the Americas? What is it that's so vital to the military brass? The answer may lie in this: the school and its students, along with a never-ending supply of US military equipment to countries around the world, are part of a package that serves the US foreign policy agenda in a special way. The package is called "access". Along with the equipment come American technicians, instructors, replacement parts and more. Here s the testimony before Congress of General Norman Schwarzkopf, Commander in Chief, US Central Command (CENTCOM), in1990. "Security assistance leads directly to access, and without access afforded by our friends we cannot project U.S. military forces into [an] area and stay there for any appreciable length of time If our military assistance programs diminish, our influence will erode. 64

CIA, "Psychological Operations in Guerrilla Warfare", 1984
A manual designed for the US-backed Contra forces (the guerrillas) fighting in Nicaragua against the leftist Sandinista government. It advised: "It is possible to neutralize carefully selected and planned targets, such as court judges, mesta judges [justices of the peace], police and State Security officials, CDS [Sandinista Defense Committees] 4 chiefs etc." 42.

The World Court found that in producing and disseminating this manual, the United States "encouraged the commission...of acts contrary to general principles of humanitarian law," including the 4 Geneva Conventions of 1949. 48

The School of the Americas (SOA), an Army school at Benning, Georgia, has been beleaguered for years by protestors because so many of its graduates have been involved in very serious human-rights abuses in Latin America, often involving torture and murder. Who are these military men being trained to fight if not the army of another country? Who but their own citizens? Over the years, SOA has trained tens of thousands of Latin' American military and police in subjects like counter-insurgency, infantry tactics, military intelligence, anti-narcotics operations and ~ commando operations. The students have also been taught to hate and fear something called "communism". 61

In September 1996, under continual insistence from religious and grassroots groups, the Pentagon released seven Spanish-language 4 training manuals used at the SOA until 1991, A New York Times editorial declared: Americans can now read for themselves some of the noxious lessons the United States Army taught to thousands of Latin American military and police officers at the School of the Americas during the1980s. A training manual recently released by the Pentagon recommended interrogation techniques like torture, execution, blackmail
and arresting the relatives of those being questioned. 63

SOA graduates have led a number of military coups—so many that the Washington Post reported in 1968 that the school was known throughout Latin America as the 'escuela de golpes' or coup school"—and are responsible for the murders of thousands of people, particularly in the 1980s. p. 63

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000.



"The primary concern of American foreign policy to Latin America (explicit in the National Security Commission 5432 Review, 1954) is "…nationalistic regimes which are responsive to the demands of the masses o0f the population for an improvement in their low living standards and for diversification of production." 20. "In contrast, we have to organize export-oriented production and integration into the world market, and not nationalism, not use of resources for domestic needs. They are not allowed to devote their resources to say, subsistence agriculture, but rather to export crops…The way to do this (was for us) to take control of the Latin American military." 20."The reason we are in Central America is resource extraction The concern with Nicaragua is that an alternative demonstration could succeed. "If any country can fall into the hands of nationalist leaders who devote resources to their own populations. It could very well have a demonstration effect." 20. Hence the hysteria re Grenada.

N. Chomsky, Interview in Multinational Monitor, Nov., 1988, 19-23.

In Latin America an alliance between foreign capital and local rich people "…reinforces itself with ceaseless propaganda stamping any form of progressive alternative as ‘communist’"

M. Manley, "The Caribbean Basin, in R. Gauhar, Ed., Third World Affairs, 1985. 
p. 343.

"Our effort in Vietnam was intended to be a model counter-insurgency –the struggle in which we would demonstrate that wars of national liberation must fail…a failure…would lend credibility to the proponents of revolutionary warfare and inspire oppressed peoples everywhere to revolt against Pax Americana." 54.

M. J. Klare, War Without End, Knopf, 1972.

The US aim …"in its efforts to cripple the Nicaraguan economy is... to ensure that the case of Nicaragua does not present an attractive example which other countries might be tempted to follow." "If the Sandinistas were t0o succeed in promoting economic development where Somoza and other American clients in the region have failed that would encourage aspirations among people in other countries under American domination to break free."

J. McMahan, Reagan and the World, Pluto, 1984, p. 139.

‘The Administrations concern was with the symbol, with the example that Grenada had set for other countries in the region."

J. McMahan, Reagan and the World, Pluto, 1984, p. 164

"The great fear "..the dread of a revolutionary movement that will sweep through Latin America and abolish the century old system of exploitation that enriches American businesses at the expense of the rest of the hemisphere…Between 1960 and 1970 the US spent $1 billion to overcome insurgent threats to the existing order."

M. J. Klare, War Without End, Knopf, 1972, p. 270

By destroying Vietnam to its core, by poisoning the earth, the water and the gene pool for generations, Washington had in fact achieved its primary purpose: preventing what might have been the rise of a good development option for Asia. Ho Chi Minh was, after all, some kind of communist.

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000 135

American foreign-policy makers are exquisitely attuned to the rise of a government, or a movement that might take power, that will not lie down and happily become an American client state, that will not look upon the free market or the privatization of the world known as "globalization" as the summum bonum, that will not change its laws to favour foreign investment, that will not be unconcerned about the effects of foreign investment upon the welfare of its own people, that will not produce primarily for export, that will not allow asbestos, banned pesticides and other products restricted in the developed world to be dumped onto their people, that will not easily tolerate the International Monetary Fund or the World Trade Organization inflicting a scorched~earth policy upon the country's social services or standard of living, that will not allow an American or NATO military installation upon its soil...To the highly sensitive nostrils of Washington foreign-policy veterans, Yugoslavia smelled a bit too much like one of these governments.

Given the proper pretext, such bad examples have to be reduced to basket cases, or, where feasible, simply overthrown, like Albania and Bulgaria in the early 1990s; failing that, life has to be made impossible for these renegades, as with Cuba, still. ..

And this was the foundation—the sine qua non—of American foreign policy for the entire twentieth century, both before and after the existence of the Soviet Union, from the Philippines, Panama and the Dominican Republic in the first decade of the century, to Peru.

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000.

“The Vietnam war was fought to prevent Vietnam from becoming a successful model of economic and social development for the Third World.” p. 91

            N. Chomsky, Understanding Power, p. 91.

“The real crime of Cuba was the successes, in terms of things          ~-

like health care and feeding people, and the general threat of a "demonstration effect" that follows from that—that is, the threat that people in other countries might try to do the same things. That's what they call a rotten

apple that might spoil the barrel, or a virus that might infect the region—

and then our whole imperial system begins to fall apart. I mean, for thirty

years, Cuba has been doing things which are simply intolerable—such as

sending tens of thousands of doctors to support suffering people around the Third World, or developing biotechnology in a poor country with no options, or having health services roughly at the level of the advanced countries and way out of line with the rest of Latin America. These things are not tolerable to American power—they'd be intolerable anywhere in the Third World, and they're multiply intolerable in a country which is expected to be a U.S. colony. That's Cuba's real crime.” p. 32   .

          Source Uncertain; probably N. Chomsky, Understanding Power.

Just as Yugoslavia served as a "bad" example in Europe, so Iraq served as a bad example to other nations in the Middle East. The last thing the plutocrats in Washington want in that region is independent, self-defining developing nations that wish to control their own land, labor, and natural resources.

US economic and military power has been repeatedly used to suppress competing systems. Self-defining countries like Cuba, Iraq, and Yugoslavia are targeted. Consider Yugoslavia. It showed no desire to become part of the European Union and absolutely no interest in joining NATO. It had an economy that was relatively prosperous, with some 80 percent of it still publicly owned. The wars of secession and attrition waged against Yugoslavia---all in the name of human rights and democracy---destroyed that country's economic infrastructure and fractured it into a cluster of poor, powerless, right-wing mini-republics, whose economies are being privatized, deregulated, and opened to Western corporate penetration on terms that are completely favorable to the investors. We see this happening most recently in Serbia. Everything is being privatized at garage sale prices. Human service, jobs, and pension funds are disappearing. Unemployment, inflation, and poverty are skyrocketing, as is crime, homelessness, prostitution, and suicide ---we can anticipate that the same thing is in store for Iraq following a US occupation: An Iraqi puppet government will be put in place, headed by someone every bit as subservient to the White House as Tony Blair. The Iraqi state-owned media will become "free and independent" by being handed over to rich 
conservative private corporations. Anything even remotely critical of US foreign policy and free market capitalism will be deprived of an effective platform. Conservative political parties, heavil financed by US sources, will outspend any leftist groupings that might have survived. On this steeply unleveled playing field, US advisors will conduct US-style "democratic elections," perhaps replicating the admirable results produced in Florida and elsewhere. Just about everything in the Iraqi economy will be privatized at giveaway prices. Poverty and underemployment, already high, will climb precipitously. So 
will the Iraqi national debt, as international loans are floated that "help" the Iraqis pay for their own victimization. Public services will dwindle to nothing, and Iraq will suffer even more misery than it does today.

M Parenti, To Kill Iraq. 2002.



The following quotes illustrate the way international relations are frequently about little more than grabbing and bullying.

After the defeat of Japan in 1945, the US intervened repeatedly to prevent the restoration of Dutch colonial power in Indonesia, while at the same time supporting the Indonesian army and right-wing politicians in their drive against the Indonesian left. Following an army offensive against the left in Madiun, East Java, in September 1948, which left thousands of people dead, the Truman administration hailed the government of Vice-President/Prime Minister Mobamad Hatta as "the only government in the Far East to 'have met and crushed an all-out communist offensive." Once Hatta had proven his anti-communist credentials, Washington proceeded to compel the Dutch to abandon their military operations against republican forces and enter into negotiations with the Republic for the transfer of sovereignty in 1949. The negotiations in the Hague took place under the patronage of US diplomat Merle Cochrane, who lobbied tenaciously to iron out disagreements and prevent Dutch obstinacy from sabotaging US objectives. 182

C. Budiardjo, "Indonesia; Mass Extermination and the Consolidation of Authoritarian Power", Ch. 8 in A. George, Western State Terrorism, Polity, 1991.

Secretary Weinberger however, proposed a reformulation. In his words, the United States had to oppose "the geographic expansion of Soviet control and military presence worldwide, particularly where such presence threatens our geo-strategic position." This was a definite hardening of previous formulations. For, among other things, it implied active measures to prevent B] change or revolution which might threaten US interests and which might be supported - or be thought to be supported - by the Soviet Union.' 221.

In 1983, the US which was displeased with Zimbabwe's voting in the Security Council, cut assistance to that country by almost half. US officials stated that Zimbabwe's sponsorship of a resolution condemning US intervention in (Grenada and its abstention on a US-
sponsored resolution after the Korean airliner incident "played a bitpart" in its decision.

In 1983, when large numbers of Mozambicans faced starvation and when tens of thousands had already died from lack of food, the Reagan administration deliberately held back food aid to that country, just as it was seeking to "persuade" it to sign a non-aggression pact with South Africa. Mozambique had repeatedly refused to agree to South Africa's demand that the ANC be expelled from its territory. 327

In early 1986, the Reagan administration virtually declared open war on Angola. In a major public relations campaign to garner support for UNITA, the Reagan administration brought Jonas Savimbi to Washington, where he talked to influential groups and met with President Reagan. It was later reported that the US had agreed to
give UNITA some $15 million in arms and equipment, but the amount was, in fact, substantially higher. Samora Machel, the president of Mozambique, was killed in an airplane crash on the South African border with Mozambique in October, 1986. Machel's death was a terrible blow to Mozambique, to the front-line states and to the Non-Aligned Movement. The crash was not accidental. South Africa used sophisticated electronic equipment which caused the instruments on Machel's aircraft to malfunction. The highly classified equipment had come from the United States.

In the summer of 1986, a Zimbabwe minister, speaking at a public function, sharply criticized the US for its refusal to enact adequate economic sanctions against South Africa. Former President Jimmy Carter, who was present, walked out. A few days later, the Reagan administration suspended - and later withheld - more than $13 million in aid to Zimbabwe.

"The Reagan Doctrine and the Destabilization of Southern Africa", Sean Gervasi and Sybil Wong, Ch. 9 in A. George, Ed., Western State Terrorism, 1991, p.52.

They claim to abhor the unprecendented "aggression" of Iraq against Kuwait. But aggression is the name of the game for all these powers. The United States was the driving force behind the resolution. Yet only a year ago US troops stormed into Panama, killing 7000 people in one night and then setting up a puppet government which "invited them in". Ten years earlier the US had armed 30,000 Contras to wage war against the elected government of Nicaragua. The USSR eagerly backed the resolution. Just two years ago Russian troops withdrew from Afghanistan after ten years of trying to occupy. Gorbachev's government still insists on enforcing its rule on Lithuania, 50 years after Stalin used military force to seize the country.

The butchers of Tienanmen Square also gave their support. China has been in military occupation of Tibet for 30 years, ruthlessly crushing all opposition. Eagerly applauding the UN resolution was Israel, which has forcibly occupied the Palestinian West Bank for 23 years, attempting ruthlessly to crush al1 opposition. Eight years ago Israel staged an unprovoked and brutal invasion of Lebanon, killing tens of thousands of people. It still holds on to a strip of southern Lebanon in defiance of any alleged "international law". At no point have the great powers even talked about sanctions against Israel. 27

A supposed example of "peaceful negotiation" was the Vienna Congress of 18I5, which it claimed "established boundaries that lasted 100 years. The Vienna Congress was in fact no alternative to war but a conference where the victors in the long and bloody wars against Napoleon divided up the spoils between them. It was a congress which imprisoned nations and re-installed the most disgusting reactionary monarchies. Far from leading to peace, almost every war and revolution in Europe over the next century was fought against the decisions of this Congress. 29

R. Bollard, No Blood For Oil, International Socialist Organisation, (undated; c 2001.)



The US CIA has made extensive use of the drug trade to raise money for it s operations.

In 2000, the Taliban government under advice from the United Nations Drug Control Program (UNDCP) imposed a total ban on opium production. Prior to the ban, according to the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Afghanistan produced more than 70% of the world's opium in 2000…These multibillion dollar revenues of narcotics were deposited in the Western banking system. Most of the large international banks -together with their affiliates in the offshore banking havens-laundered large amounts of narco-dollars. In other words, Afghanistan, the poorest country on earth, was the source of tremendous financial wealth derived from the drug trade to financial institutions, business syndicates and organised crime….Immediately following the installation of the US puppet government under Prime Minister Hamid Kharzai, opium production soared, regaining its historic levels. According to the UNDCP, opium cultivation increased by 657 % in 2002 (in relation to its 2001 level). In 2001, opium cultivation had fallen to an estimated 7606ha.(See table below). It is currently estimated by the UNDCP to be of the order of 45,000 -65,000ha.

by Michel Chossudovsky,Centre for Research on Globalisation (CRG), http://globalresearch.ca/ 20 May, 2002

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 an elite DEA enforcement .

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000.

1950s to early 1970s, Southeast Asia…

The Nationalist Chinese army, defeated by the communists in 1949 and forced into exile, became part of an army formed by the CIA in Burma to wage war against Communist China. The Agency closed its eyes to the fact that their new clients were becoming the opium barons of the Golden Triangle (parts of Burma, Thailand and Laos), the world's largest source of opium and heroin. Air America, the Principal airline proprietary, flew the drugs all over Southeast Asia, to sites where the opium was processed into heroin, and to trans-shipment points on the route to Westem customers. 218

During the US military involvement in Vietnam and Laos, the CIA worked closely with certain tribal peoples and warlords engaged rr in opium cultivation. In exchange for tactical or intelligence support from these elements, the Agency protected their drug operations. Air America pilots were again engaged in flying opium and heroin throughout the area to serve the personal and entrepreneurial needs of the ClA's various military and political allies, at times lining their own pockets as well; on occasion, the proceeds also helped finance CIA covert actions off budget; ultimately, the enterprise turned many Gls in Vietnam into heroin addicts. 
The operation was not a paragon of discretion. Heroin was refined in a laboratory located on the site of CIA headquarters in Northern Laos. After two decades of American military intervention, Southeast Asia had become the source of 70 percent of the world's illicit opium and the major supplier for America's booming heroin market. 219

1980s, the United States and the Cocaine Import Agency. In addition to the cases cited above of drug-laden planes landing in the US unmolested by authorities, there is the striking case of Oscar Danilo Blandon and Juan Norwin Meneses, two Nicaraguans living in Califomia. To support the Contras (particularly during a period in which Congress banned funding for them), as well as enriching themselves, the two men turned to smuggling cocaine into the US under CIA protection. This led to the distribution of large quantities of cocaine into Los Angeles' inner city… 225. For more than a decade, Panamanian strongman General Manuel Noriega was a highly paid CIA asset and collaborator, despite knowledge by US drug authorities as early as 1971 that the general was heavily involved in drug trafficking and money laundering. Noriega facilitated "guns-for-drugs" flights for the Nicaraguan Contras, providing protection and pilots; safe havens for drug cartel officials and discreet banking facilities for all. Yet, US officials, including CIA Director William Webster and several Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officers, sent Noriega letters of praise for his efforts to thwart drug trafficking (albeit only against competitors Of his Medellin Carrel patrons). William Casey, who became CIA Director in 1981, declared that he didn't denounce Noriega for his relationship with drug traffickers because the Panamanian "was providing valuable support for our policies in Central America, especially Nicaragua".

When a confluence of circumstances led to Noriega falling into political disfavour with Washington, the Bush administration was reluctantly obliged to tum against him. In 1989, the US invaded Panama, kidnapped and imprisoned the general, and falsely ascribed the invasion to the war on drugs whereas several foreign policy imperatives actually lay behind the operation. Drug trafficking through Panama continued unabated under the new US-installed goveRNment. 220.

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000.

l980s, Central America.

Washington's philosophy was consistent: let 'em traffic in drugs, murder, rape and torture, let 'em bum down schools and medical clinics...as long as they carry out our wars, they're our boys, our good ol' boys. Obsessed with overthrowing the leftist Sandinista government in Nicaragua, Reagan administration officials tolerated and abetted drug trafficking as long as the traffickers gave support to the Contras. 1989, the Senate Subcommittee on Terrorism, Narcotics and International Operations (the Kerry Committee) concluded a three year investigation by stating: There was substantial evidence of drug smuggling through the war zones on the part of individual Contras, Contra suppliers, Contra pilots, mercenaries who worked with the Contras, and Contra supporters throughout the region...U.S. officials involved in Central America failed to address the drug issue for fear of jeopardizing the war efforts against Nicaragua...ln each case, one or another agency of the U.S. government had information regarding the involvement either while it was occurring, or immediately thereafter...Senior U.S. policy makers were not immune to the idea that drug money was a perfect solution to the Contras, funding problems. 221

Hull and other ClA-connected Contra supporters and pilots teamed up with George Morales, a major Miami-based Colombian, drug trafficker who later admitted to giving more than $4 million in cash to the Contras. Morales' planes were loaded with weapons in Florida, flown to Central America and then brought back with cocaine on board. 221

The US repeatedly thwarted Costa Rican efforts to extradict Hull back to Costa Rica to stand trial. Another Costa Rican base drug ring involved anti-Castro Cubans whom the CIA had hired a' military trainers for the Contras. Many of the Cubans had long been involved with the CIA and drug trafficking. They used Contra planes and a Costa Rican-based shrimp company, which laundered money for the CIA, to move cocaine to the United States.

In Honduras, in exchange for allowing the US to convert the country into a grand military base, the CIA and DEA turned a virtually blind eye to the extensive drug trafficking of Honduran military officers, government officials and others. 

There were other way stations such as the Guatemalan military intelligence service, closely associated with the CIA, and which harboured many drug traffickers, and Ilopango Air Force Base in El Salvador, a key component of the US military intervention against the country's guerrillas. Former DEA officer Celerino Castillo, stationed in El Salvador, has written of how Contra planes flew north loaded with cocaine, landed with impunity in various spots in the United States, including an Air Force base in Texas, then returned laden with cash to finance the war. "All under the protective umbrella of the United States Government."

The connections were everywhere: Four companies that distributed "humanitarian" aid to the Contras but were "owned and operated by narcotics traffickers", and under investigation in the United States for drug trafficking, received State Department contracts of more than $800,000. Southern Air Transport, "formerly" ClA-owned, and later under Pentagon contract, was deeply involved in the drug A running as well. 223

See the "Interventions" chapter for discussion of how Washington ignored much of the drug trafficking of government and military A personnel in Peru, Colombia and Mexico in the l990s because of A the anti-leftist campaigns being waged by these regimes with USA support. 224

1980s to early I99Os, Afghanistan CIA supported Moujahedeen rebels engaged heavily in opium cultivation while fighting against the Soviet-supported government. The agency's political protection and logistical assistance enabled the growers to markedly increase their output. ClA-supplied trucks and mules, which had carried arms into Afghanistan, were used to transport opium to heroin laboratories along the Afghan-Pakistan border. The output is estimated to have provided up to one half of the heroin used annually in the United States and three-quarters of that used in Western Europe. US officials admitted in 199O that they failed to investigate or take action against the drug operation because of a desire not to offend their Pakistani and Afghan allies. 224

1986 to I 994, Haiti …While working to keep right-wing Haitian military and political leaders in power, the CIA looked away from their drug trafficking. 224

W. Blum, Rogue State; A Guide to the World's Only Superpower, Monroe, Me., Common Courage Press, 2000.