If you thought Reagan was the “Great Communicator” – check out what he “communicated” about drugs and the drug war. Also starring Nancy “Just Say No” Reagan. This is a puppet president … this is your country on a puppet president. Any questions?
Apologies to the Dead Kennedys for borrowing from “Holiday In Cambodia” for this show’s soundtrack (the actual song has nothing to do with Reagan or pot – it was written before Regan was put into power … it was released in 1980) and he’s singing “Pol Pot” – the Cambodian dictator put in place as a reaction to massive bombing by the USA.
I hope, in the spirit of Jello’s earlier “Grow More Pot” pot activism, that the DK’s won’t mind us twisting the words and using their tune for these purposes.
The other clips are from “a 20th Century look at the Drug War” with Mike Wallice, Mike Ruppert’s “Truth and Lies behind 9-11”, Bill Moyer’s look at the Contra scandal and some background clips from “Crack The CIA” – a fine five minute crash course in CIA/Reagan Bush crimes – don’t miss watching “Reagan On Drugs” or “Crack the CIA”!
Rebellion, contempt for their elders and even subversive elements are behind a “near epidemic” use of drugs by California youth, according to the Reagan Administration. … Flanking Reagan at a news conference were Lt. Gov. Ed Reinecke and Dr. Edward R. Bloomquist of Glendale, who chairs an interagency council on drug abuse sponsored jointly by state government and the California Medical Association. “Subversive elements have found that drugs can be invaluable.” Asked to explain, the doctor said he has talked with student demonstrators who admitted their “inhibitions” had been released through drugs supplied them by anarchists …”
Reagan Attacks Youth’s Drug Abuse
San Francisco Chronicle, Sept. 19, 1969, p.7
quoted in Kaplan, “Marijuana, the new prohibition”, 1970, p. 8
“Ronald and even former First Lady Nancy “Just Say No” Reagan are reported to have smoked pot in the California Govenor’s mansion.
-Emperor Wears No Clothes, p. 75
“The most reliable scientific sources say permanent brain damage is one of the inevitable results of the use of marijuana.”
-California Govenor Ronald Reagan, 1974, when asked about decriminalizing marijuana.
Quote from the film “Grass”….
“We’re taking down the surrender flag that has flown over so many drug efforts. We’re running up a battle flag.”
-Ronald Reagan, June 1982, quoted in “Drug Crazy”, Mike Gray, 1998, p. 100
The mood toward drugs is changing in this country and the momentum is with us. We’re making no excuses for drugs – hard, soft or otherwise. Drugs are bad and we’re going after them.
-President Ronald Reagan, in a Radio Address to the Nation, Oct.2, 1982
Quoted in “Smoke & Mirrors”, Dan Baum, 1997, p.162
“The Reagan/Bush Administration put a soft “feeler” out in September of 1983 for all American universities and researchers to destroy all 1966-76 cannabis research work, including compendiums in libraries.”
-Jack Herer, “The Emperor Wears No Clothes”, 11th ed., p. 43
“The Ominbus Crime Bill of 1984 gave the administration everything it asked for and then some. In addition to the inevitable boost in prison terms, prosecutors could now confiscate cash, cars, boats, homes, bank accounts, stock portfolios – anything believed to have been tainted with drugs or drug money – based on nothing more than an accusation. … It allowed police to take property without notice … the exact reverse of due process … And the new law had one additional clause that would subtly alter the relationship between citizen and police. From now on, seized assets would be shared among the law enforcement agencies that made the seizure.”- Drug Crazy, p. 101
“The Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984, the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986 , and the Anti-Drug Abuse Amendment Act of 1988 raised federal penalties for marijuana possession, cultivation and trafficking. Sentances were to be determined by the amount of pot involved; “conspiracies” and “attempts” were to be punished as severely as completed acts; and a hundred marijuana plants now carried the same sentence as a hundred grams of heroin.”
-“Reefer Madness”, Eric Schlosser, 2003, p. 25
“There’s no middle ground. Indifference is not an option. … We want you to help us create an outspoken intolerance for drug use… For the sake of our children, I implore each of you to be unyielding and inflexible in your opposition to drugs. … won’t you join us in this great new national crusade?”
-Nancy Reagan, standing next to Ronald during a televised speech from the White House, Sept. 14, 1986
“In the name of drugs, Reagan quickly removed prohibitions against the CIA acting as a domestic law enforcement agency and directed the CIA to help enforce US drug laws. … In 1986, Reagan issued a secret Ntional Security Decision Directive declaring drug trafficking to be a military threat against America. That directive formed a basis for invoking war powers.”
– Richard Lawrence Miller,”Drug Warriors and their Prey”, 1996, pp. 159-160
“Dr. Carlton Turner, director of the White House Drug Abuse Policy Office under President Ronald Reagan … was forced to resign as drug czar in 1986 after proclaiming publicly that marijuana caused homosexuality, a breakdown of the immune system, and therefore AIDS.”
-David R. Ford, “Marijuana – Not Guilty As Charged”, 1997, p. 110
“Soon after Turner left office, Nancy Reagan recommended that no corporation be permitted to do business with the federal government without having a urinary purity policy in place to show their loyalty.”
– Emperor, p. 115
“Bush is the real president. Reagan is just a puppet.”
-Jorge Morales, Drug Smuggler and CIA asset
The Cocaine Wars, 1988, p.335
“If you’re a casual drug user, you’re an accomplice to murder.”
Nancy Reagan, NYT, March 1, 1988, A16
“Experiment, yes; a problem, no.”
-Nancy Reagan, when asked whenther her children had ever had a drug problem.
“Nancy Reagan”, Kitty Kelly, 1991, p. 189
Mrs. Reagan’s Crusade
Mrs. Reagan first became impressed by the need to educate young people of the dangers of drug use and abuse during a campaign visit to Daytop Village, New York, in 1980. She “was stunned to find out just how large the problem of drug abuse really is,” and was “impressed by what [she]saw at Daytop Village – children who were climbing out of the mess that they had made of their lives because of their dependency on drugs” She later returned to Daytop Village to explain how concerned about the problem she was, and how she wished to help.
Her concern for the effects of drug use on the world’s young people, coupled by her hope and determination, enabled her to recognize the necessity of informing youths of its danger. It is this concern that prompted her to actively campaign against drug and alcohol abuse. Mrs. Reagan’s anti-drug crusade took her to 65 cities in 33 states, the Vatican, and eight other foreign countries in the course of eight years, as well as moving her to make numerous speeches, host two international conferences, and participate in radio and TV interviews. Mrs. Reagan, in an interview with Good Morning America in November 1981, said her ” best role is to try to bring public awareness, particularly parental awareness, to the problems of drug abuse” because “understanding what drugs can do to your children, understanding peer pressure and understanding why they turn to drugs is…the first step in solving the problem.”
The second international drug conference Mrs. Reagan hosted was at the United Nations on October 21, 1985, and on the first page of the brochure, Mrs. Reagan wrote:
Welcome to New York City and thank you for joining me for our First Ladies meeting on drug abuse at the United Nations. It means so much to know you share my concern about this terrible problem, and I admire your interest in learning about ways to solve it.
As I’ve said many times, drug abuse knows no boundaries. It crosses all lines – geographical, racial, political, economic. There is no one here today whose country isn’t affected by the inevitable sorrow and tragedy drug abuse causes. Not only can it tear down an entire nation, it also brings danger into the lives of our most precious resource our children. It is up to our generation to protect them and provide for them a drug-free world in which to live. We must act now, not tomorrow, or the next day.
Your presence here today helps confirm my belief that there is great hope. With our combined efforts and those of our friends and neighbors from all corners of the world, we will defeat this problem.
I look forward to our discussions today and working with you in the months ahead.
The CIA Drug connection under Reagan
Under President Ronald Reagan America not only increased its involvement in the Middle East by supplying arms to both Iraq and Iran in their war against each other, but America stepped up its involvement in conflicts around the world, especially South America.
The ?War on Drugs? really started with President Nixon and his attack on marijuana, but Reagan is known as the ?Just Say No? president for his campaign against recreational drugs in America and a strong policy of international drug eradication. Under Reagan?s policy, at a time when Americans were being presented with strong anti-drug propaganda, the CIA was in fact an accomplice to a large narcotics smuggling ring in the United States. It was in fact Reagan?s policies that led to the cooperation between the CIA and the Contras. The Contras were a counter-revolutionary group that was fighting against the Sandinistas to return the corrupt Somoza regime to power in Nicaragua.
In a 1986 White House speech Ronald Reagan Stated: “Despite our best efforts, illegal cocaine is coming into our country at alarming levels and 4 to 5 million people regularly use it.”
Alleged Contras in Nicaragua
In 1998 the CIA finally admitted to its involvement in drug trafficking in the United States after years of federal investigation by the Kerry Congressional Committee. What the CIA admitted to was allowing cocaine trafficking to take place by Contras who were being supported by the CIA, using facilities and resources supplied by the US government, and preventing investigation into these activities by other agencies. This was done because funds for the support of militant groups in South America had been withdrawn by Congress so the CIA allowed the Contras to engage in the drug trade in the United States in order to make money to fund their military operations. If you are wondering why this was not covered more widely in the news during the Clinton Administration it may be because Arkansas was one of the major trafficking centers for the operations.
These are hard facts. The CIA was forced to publish the information by the Congressional Committee when they were found of wrongdoing. You can find the official CIA version of the story here:
CNN, and other major news agencies ran only minor stories covering the revelation:
As part of the evidence this page from Oliver North’s notepad shows that he was aware of the possibility of Contra drug running to the United States.
The relevant item reads:
“Honduran DC-6 which is being used for runs out of New Orleans is probably being used for drug runs into U.S.”
The truth is that the “War on Drugs” is more about international politics and control then it is about concern for the health of Americans. Drugs have been a major factor in the funding of revolutions for centuries. This is because drugs are a very high profit product that can be grown by even the most primitive people, and thus it?s very hard to control. In fact the American Revolution was funded by ?drugs?. The main ?drug? in the funding of the American Revolution was tobacco, but opium played a role as well. Tobacco was regulated by the King of England not only for health reasons, but also because he knew that it was funding American colonial ?terrorism?. America was able to pay for French support in the war against England largely through tobacco money. At the time the American Revolution was also known as “The Tobacco Wars” and the area of Massachusetts Bay was known as “The Tobacco Coast”.
Likewise opium and cocaine have also been products that have funded many wars and revolutions over the past few hundred years. In fact a common strategy of entities that wish to quickly gain large amounts of money is to sell drugs to their local population. This was done by the British from the 1600s through the 1800s, selling not only to their own citizens, but to all of the people within their empire as well as China. It is estimated that the opium trade was the largest single source of revenue for the British Crown during this time and was one of the major trades that enabled British Imperialism. In addition, during WWII the Japanese began heavy opium production and sales, selling both to their own people and to the Chinese. This opium trade raised significant amounts of money to fund the Japanese military.
The reason why the Reagan administration began the War on Drugs was to cut off the money supply to revolutionary groups in South America, the Middle East, and Asia that were using drug money to fund wars for national independence from foreign intervention. America has been able to selectively apply pressure to various regimes under the guise of the War on Drugs, which is just one more way that elements of the American government have been able to get funding for taking action against foreign governments in order to promote American interests. Another of the major problems that prompted the origin of the War on Drugs and was able to get much of the initial support for the program was the problem of the Medellin Cartel in Columbia run by Pablo Escobar. This was a very legitimate and problematic issue; the Medellin Cartel was out of control and terrorizing the country of Columbia.
This is really what has always been behind the War on Drugs; the problem that is being addressed is not drug use, but the existence of drug cartels, narco-terrorism, and political groups that use drug money to fund private wars.
In 1999 Congress released a report on the history of CIA involvement in drug trafficking. If you don’t remember seeing anything about it on the news, that because it wasn’t reported by any major news agencies. An outline of the history can be found here:
A History of CIA Complicity in Drug International Trafficking
For more on this issue see:
Fought drugs beyond “Just Say No” Reagan was serious about reducing the scourge of drugs, and the efforts of his administration went well beyond Nancy Reagan’s “just say no” campaign. The Justice Department involved the FBI in the fight against drugs, added five hundred Drug Enforcement Administration agents, established thirteen regional anti-drug task forces and chalked up record numbers of drug seizures and convictions. But the magnitude of the drug problem was at least as great when Reagan left office as when he entered it. Source: The Role of a Lifetime, by Lou Cannon, p. 813 Jul 2, 1991
The 1980’s saw an enormous backlash against the use of cannabis, on a similar scale to Anslinger’s campaign, and possibly with the same motivation. The Republican Reagan/Bush Administration launched an enormous campaign against drug use, spearheaded by the president’s wife Nancy, under the slogan “Just Say No”. The campaign, and others like it, was funded largely by tobacco and pharmaceutical companies.
In 1983, a program called Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) was initiated in schools all over the United States. Propaganda alleging untrue and unproven health effects was fed to schoolchildren, and students were encouraged to become police informants, passing information to the authorities about their friends’ and families’ drug habits. At the same time, the Reagan/Bush Administration quietly instructed American universities to destroy all research work into cannabis, undertaken between 1966 and 1976.
That same year, the federal government used aeroplanes to illegally spray marijuana fields in Kentucky, Georgia and Tennessee with the toxic weedkiller paraquat, risking the lives of cannabis smokers. Reagan’s Drugs Czar, Carlton Turner said that kids deserved to die as punishment for smoking the poisoned weed, to teach them a lesson. Two years later, he called for the death penalty for all drug users.
Under Reagan, the federal prison population doubled. Young offenders and non-violent drug users were sent to “Special Alternative Incarceration” boot camps, where they were brainwashed with yet more anti-drug propaganda, to undermine their subversive attitudes. The President declared the War on Drugs to be one of the major achievements of his administration, while the international narcotics trade thrived and cannabis prices sky-rocketed.
In 1989, it was revealed in the Iran-Contra scandal that the U.S. Government was participating in the trading of “hard drugs” for military weapons. In the ensuing investigation, the increasingly frail and senile Ronald Reagan pleaded ignorance and, unsurprisingly, everyone believed him. But Ephidrina wonders: was this what a confused old man really meant when he was talking about the “War on Drugs”?
During his administration, there was a major scandal and investigation of his administration’s covert support of wars in Iran and Nicaragua in what came to be known as the Iran-Contra Affair. A member of his administration had sold arms to the Iranian government and given the revenue to the Contras in Nicaragua, who were engaged in a bloody civil war. Both actions were contrary to acts of Congress. Reagan’s quick call for the appointment of an Independent Counsel to investigate, and cooperation with counsel, kept the scandals from affecting his presidency. It was found that the President was guilty of the scandal only in that his lax control of his own staff resulted in his ignorance of the arms sale. Although considered personally honest by most Americans, President Reagan and his term in office saw several other scandals of bribery, corruption, and influence peddling involving Reagan’s aides and subordinates, resulting in some 30 members of his administration spending time in prison. The failure of these scandals to damage Reagan’s reputation led some to dub him the “Teflon President”. Interestingly, teflon has been linked by some scientists to Alzheimer’s Disease.
“War on Drugs”
Reagan’s policies in the “War on Drugs” emphasized imprisonment for drug offenders while cutting funding for addiction treatment. This resulted in a dramatic increase in the USA’s prison population. Critics charged that the policies did little to actually reduce the availability of drugs or crime on the street while resulting in a great financial and human cost for American society. Nevertheless, it was an important part of Reagan’s policy of being tough on crime. Due to this policy and various cuts in spending for social programs during his Presidency, Reagan was regarded by some critics as indifferent to the needs of poor and minority citizens.
Although we will not pursue the topic here, the Contras also ran drugs from Latin America into the US. In his diary entry of 9 August 1985 [shown at right], Lt. Col. Oliver North, who coordinated many of the Iran Contra covert activities from the basement of the Reagan White House, recorded his suspicions. Look at the red box in the middle of the page,. You should be able to decipher his crabbed, lefthanded scrawl. He recorded that:
“Honduran DC-6 which
is being used for
runs out of New Orleans
is probably being used
for drug runs into U.S.”
Semper fi, Ollie?? Thus Contra drug trafficking is a closed question; they did it. The only open question is the degree of involvement and knowledge of the CIA and other Reagan administration operatives.
Reagan in 1980:
“Permanent brain damage is one of the inevitable results of the use of marijuana.”
Ronald Reagan, 1974
Now we go on to the next stop: making a final commitment not to tolerate drugs by anyone, anytime, anyplace. So, won’t you join us in this great, new national crusade?