“Kill the Messenger” was released in the theaters last week, and tells the story about Pulitzer-winning journalist Gary Webb’s coverage of a supposed scandal in which the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency allowed the flow of cocaine into the United States, reported The Huffington Post.
In 1996, Webb wrote a three-part article called “Dark Alliance” exploring the possibility of the CIA either allowing, or even perpetuating, the Nicaraguan cocaine trade in the United States to fund the Contra war during the 1980s. Despite evidence of this arrangement and interviews with those linked to the government and drug trade, Webb was blacklisted by Big Media, and the national papers dismissed Webb as a kook.
Nearly two decades has gone by since the story that was supposed to shock the world but ended up getting snuffed by the major media outlets occurred. Now that a book about the story and a movie about the scandal have been released, a documentary about the crack epidemic linked to the Nicaraguan drug in the 1980s is about to be released.
The 1980’s cocaine and crack epidemic exploded in the low-income black and hispanic neighborhoods in America; arrest rates were skyrocketing and murder rates had hit record numbers. However, the media and government weren’t paying attention to these social ills until cocaine spread into the white American suburbs.
Once those young people started using these drugs, then the government and the media started to pay attention. The war on drugs had officially hit critical mass. Webb connected the dots that the CIA had links to the Nicaraguan drug trade and allowed it since drugs funded the Contras, a military group backed by the US government.
Because the “Dark Alliance” series was greatly bashed by the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times, and the Washington Post, Webb’s career fell apart and he never regained notoriety. The major papers appeared to protect the CIA at this time. Webb all but lost his job completely and was found dead from an apparent suicide in 2004.
With the movie’s release, and documentary “Freeway: Crack in the System,” there’s surely to be a reawakened dialogue about the government’s relationship with international drug traffickers. Could it be true that the U.S. government perpetuated the flow of drugs into the country and reacted by launching a costly, go-nowhere drug war that has ruined millions of lives and wasted just as much money?