Unable to provide direct assistance to rebel Nicaraguan Contras, the C.I.A. backs and protects cocaine smugglers fueling the L.A. crack epidemic.

The early 1980s Boland Amendment placed severe restrictions on the C.I.A.’s ability to wage its secret wars against the Nicaraguan government. The Boland Amendment had also lead to the Iran-Contra affair, in which the Senior officials of the US government were involved in a plot to sell weapons to Iran in order to secretly fund the Contras.

The C.I.A. and the Reagan White House were aware that the Contras were smuggling cocaine into the United States which was transformed into crack flooding the streets of Los Angeles and other major metropolis with cheap cocaine and causing the crack cocaine epidemic.

Gary Webb’s Dark Alliance detailing the plot was printed in the San Jose Mercury News series In August 1996. Webb determined that the drugs were coming from one source and that the money was used to finance a guerrilla war in South America. He also documented that the C.I.A. was aware of the Contras’ activities but failed to report them to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). It was later revealed that the CIA had a get-out-of-jail card in the form of a 1982 secret agreement to allow their assets to break certain laws, including drug smuggling

Initially there was public outrage. The government reacted by not reacting and let their gatekeepers at the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times and at the New York Times do the talking. (See Operation Mockingbird) San Jose Mercury News could not take the pressure and eventually backed down.

From that point on, Gary Webb was persona non grata and unable to work for a daily newspaper again. He made all his information available on his Dark Alliance website so that anyone could verify his research for themselves.

In 1998 the Justice Department published a report revealing that the Reagan White House was aware of the trafficking and that the CIA had directly interfered in DEA investigation to protect Contra smugglers.

That same year, the CIA Inspector General published his internal investigation in which he describes how the Reagan White House gave protection to 50 Contras smugglers with the full knowledge of the National Security Council and Oliver North.

Whistleblower Gary Webb was found dead in December 2004 with two gun shots to the head. His death was ruled a suicide.