[39] Israel would continue to be reimbursed by the United States for the weapons. According to The New York Times, enough documents were put into a government shredder to jam it. The war crimes being committed by the United States and western powers against Venezuela must be dramatized and condemned in the ‘world wide court of public opinion. "[4] The congressional report wrote that the president bore "ultimate responsibility" for wrongdoing by his aides, and his administration exhibited "secrecy, deception and disdain for the law". [60]:580 The controversial admission occurred while Casey was hospitalized for a stroke, and, according to his wife, was unable to communicate. [41] North's explanation for destroying some documents was to protect the lives of individuals involved in Iran and Contra operations. As seen at: Covert United States involvement in regime change, 1959–2000 Cuba, assassination attempts on Fidel Castro, support from the United States government, National Endowment for the Preservation of Liberty, Psychological Operations in Guerrilla Warfare, CIA and Contras cocaine trafficking in the US, United States involvement in regime change in Latin America, Foreign interventions by the United States, "Offensive by Nicaraguan "Freedom Fighters" May be Doomed as Arms, Aid Dry Up", "Contra Organizations: The Contra Story – Central Intelligence Agency", http://www.incore.ulst.ac.uk/services/cds/agreements/pdf/nic2.pdf, "1984: Sandinistas claim election victory", "President Shifts Emphasis From Contra Warfare", "NSDD – National Security Decision Directives – Reagan Administration", "BBC ON THIS DAY - 5 - 1984: Sandinistas claim election victory", "NICARAGUAN VOTE: 'FREE, FAIR, HOTLY CONTESTED'", "Country ratings and status, FIW 1973-2012", "U.S. [108], The 100th Congress formed a Joint Committee of the United States Congress (Congressional Committees Investigating The Iran-Contra Affair) and held hearings in mid-1987. [105] However, a June 1988 survey in Managua showed the Sandinista government still enjoyed strong support but that support had declined since 1984. I: Investigations and prosecutions", "Irangate: Iran–Contra affair, 1985–1992", "McFarlane Took Cake and Bible to Teheran, Ex-C.I.A. Under the Boland Amendment, further funding of the Contras by the government had been prohibited by Congress. Joe," after the popular American toy. The diplomat claimed that "[Ariel] Sharon violated it, and Haig backed away...". [10] On 4 March 1987, Reagan made a further nationally televised address, taking full responsibility for the affair and stating that "what began as a strategic opening to Iran deteriorated, in its implementation, into trading arms for hostages". [25] The Israeli government required that the sale of arms meet high level approval from the United States government, and when McFarlane convinced them that the U.S. government approved the sale, Israel obliged by agreeing to sell the arms.[20]. [59]:623–624 The National Security Act of 1947, which created the NSC, gave it the vague right to perform "such other functions and duties related to the intelligence as the National Security Council may from time to time direct. Between 1980 and 1981 the Contras began to organize along the border with Honduras and initiated a guerilla war against the Sandinista government that led to bloodshed throughout most of the 1980s. [109] The joint committee's final report was Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran–Contra Affair With Supplemental, Minority, and Additional Views (U.S. GPO 17 November 1987). [107][108], After a cutoff in U.S. military support, and with both sides facing international pressure to bring an end to the conflict, the contras agreed to negotiations with the FSLN. The term "contra" is short for la contrarrevolución, in English "the counter-revolution". doi:10.1111/j.1548-2456.2004.tb00277.x. [11], The affair was investigated by the U.S. Congress and by the three-person, Reagan-appointed Tower Commission. [76], The Independent Counsel, Lawrence E. Walsh, chose not to re-try North or Poindexter. We are not killing civilians. While the Contras had little military successes, they did prove adept at carrying out CIA guerrilla warfare strategies from training manuals which advised them to incite mob violence, "neutralize" civilian leaders and government officials and attack "soft targets" — including schools, health clinics and cooperatives. These illegal activities culminated in the Iran–Contra affair. [67] Senator John Kerry's 1988 Committee on Foreign Relations report on Contra drug links concluded that "senior U.S. policy makers were not immune to the idea that drug money was a perfect solution to the Contras' funding problems". The Contras were just bad business, however. Of 92 seats in the National Assembly, UNO gained 51, and the FSLN won 39. This page was last edited on 8 December 2020, at 04:08. "[14]:249 The Iranians requested concessions such as Israel's withdrawal from the Golan Heights, which the United States rejected. When the corpse was finally still, the contras threw dirt over the shallow grave — and walked away. [98] Then on 21 December 1987, the FDN launched attacks at La Bonanza, La Siuna, and La Rosita in Zelaya province, resulting in heavy fighting. [14]:213 To maintain this arsenal, Iran required a steady supply of spare parts to replace those broken and worn out. The Contras were the various U.S.-backed and funded right-wing rebel groups that were active from 1979 to the early 1990s in opposition to the Marxist Sandinista Junta of National Reconstruction Government in Nicaragua. [103][104], There were isolated protests among the population against the draft implemented by the Sandinista government, which even resulted in full-blown street clashes in Masaya in 1988. This is the policy, to keep putting pressure until the people cry 'uncle'". What followed was the Philippine-American War, a savage exercise in jungle combat.After suffering heavy casualties from Philippine insurrectionis… [15]:966–967 Ironically, military aid to the Contras was reinstated with Congressional consent in October 1986, a month before the scandal broke. Major operations at La Trinidad, Rama highway, and Siunalatisha and La Bonanza. No operational role. [68] Reagan had not spoken to the American people directly for three months amidst the scandal,[69] and he offered the following explanation for his silence: The reason I haven't spoken to you before now is this: You deserve the truth. [65] The Enterprise's efforts culminated in the Iran–Contra Affair of 1986–1987, which facilitated contra funding through the proceeds of arms sales to Iran. [23] The idea behind the plan was for Israel to ship weapons through an intermediary (identified as Manucher Ghorbanifar)[3] to the Islamic republic as a way of aiding a supposedly moderate, politically influential faction within the regime of Ayatollah Khomeini who was believed to be seeking a rapprochement with the United States; after the transaction, the United States would reimburse Israel with the same weapons, while receiving monetary benefits. [14]:249 At one point, an angry McFarlane shouted: "As I am a Minister, I expect to meet with decision-makers. [95] In total, several dozen people were investigated by Walsh's office. The issue of drug money and its importance in funding the Nicaraguan conflict was the subject of various reports and publications. U.S. officials involved in Central America failed to address the drug issue for fear of jeopardizing the war efforts against Nicaragua…. Eddy Blanco. War crimes videos and latest news articles; GlobalNews.ca your source for the latest news on War crimes . [2] The administration hoped to use the proceeds of the arms sale to fund the Contras in Nicaragua. "[101][100], Although Bush publicly insisted that he knew little about the operation, his statements were contradicted by excerpts of his diary released by the White House in January 1993. [53], The government's program included increased wages, subsidized food prices, and expanded health, welfare, and education services. With Congress blocking further contra aid, the Reagan administration sought to arrange funding and military supplies by means of third countries and private sources. "[32][33] and opposed its ties to Cuba and the Soviet Union. Iran-Contra Affair, 1980s U.S. political scandal in which the National Security Council became involved in secret weapons transactions with Iran, covert support of the Nicaraguan contras, and other activities that either were prohibited by the U.S. Congress or violated the stated government policy. [115], Political scandal in the United States during the second term of the Reagan Administration, Reagan meets with (left to right) Secretary of Defense, Congressional committees investigating the affair, Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran–Contra Affair, with supplemental minority and additional views, H. Doc 100–433, S. Doc 100–216, 00th Congress, 1st sess., 13 November 1987, 501. [5], The plan was later complicated in late 1985, when Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North of the National Security Council diverted a portion of the proceeds from the Iranian weapon sales to fund the Contras, a group of anti-Sandinista rebels, in their insurgency against the socialist government of Nicaragua. "[14]:216 Now retired National Security Advisor McFarlane flew to London to meet with Israelis and Ghorbanifar in an attempt to persuade the Iranian to use his influence to release the hostages before any arms transactions occurred; this plan was rejected by Ghorbanifar. [19], Based in Honduras, Nicaragua's northern neighbor, under the command of former National Guard Colonel Enrique Bermúdez, the new FDN commenced to draw in other smaller insurgent forces in the north. The United States, through the National Endowment for Democracy, organized a united opposition out of fourteen dissimilar microparties into the National Opposition Union (Unión Nacional Oppositora, UNO). [14]:250 In September and October 1986 three more Americans – Frank Reed, Joseph Cicippio, and Edward Tracy – were abducted in Lebanon by a separate terrorist group, who referred to them simply as "G.I. [64], The UNO scored a decisive victory on 25 February 1990. The CIA, Contras, Gangs, and Crack. [3] A major result of the Tower Commission was the consensus that Reagan should have listened to his National Security Advisor more, thereby placing more power in the hands of that chair. Otherwise, you can work with my staff. A una persona le resultó útil. Regarding the specific charges towards the CIA, the DOJ wrote "the implication that the drug trafficking by the individuals discussed in the Mercury News articles was connected to the CIA was also not supported by the facts. "[70] Handwritten notes by Defense Secretary Weinberger indicate that the President was aware of potential hostage transfers[clarification needed] with Iran, as well as the sale of Hawk and TOW missiles to what he was told were "moderate elements" within Iran. [7][54][55] Finally, according to former Contra leader Edgar Chamorro, CIA trainers also gave Contra soldiers large knives. The ICJ held that the U.S. had violated international law by supporting the contras in their rebellion against the Nicaraguan government and by mining Nicaragua's harbors. [63] These types of activities continued throughout the war. The Commission had interviewed 80 witnesses to the scheme,[3] including Reagan, and two of the arms trade middlemen: Manucher Ghorbanifar and Adnan Khashoggi. Depending upon one's political perspective, the Congressional investigation into the Iran–Contra affair was either an attempt by the legislative arm to gain control over an out-of-control executive arm, a partisan "witch hunt" by the Democrats against a Republican administration or a feeble effort by Congress that did far too little to rein in the "imperial presidency" that had run amok by breaking numerous laws. It was alarming that a socialist-mixed-economy state could do in a few short months what the Somoza dynasty, a U.S. client state, could not do in 45 years! Such offenses in connection with warfare include what are commonly known as ''war crimes.'' [45] Poindexter told Reagan that Ghorbanifar had important connections within the Iranian government, so with the hope of the release of the hostages, Reagan approved this plan as well. The Trial Chamber noted that they chose not to amend the charges. [34] On 24 November 1985, 18 Hawk anti-aircraft missiles were delivered. IV – pleadings, oral arguments, documents", "Report of the Congressional Committees Investigating the Iran/Contra Affair", "The Lessons of Afghanistan: Bipartisan Support for Freedom Fighters Pays Off", Confessions of a Contra: How the CIA Masterminds the Nicaraguan Insurgency, "The Contras' Valley Forge: How I View the Nicaragua Crisis", Dean Peter Krogh Foreign Affairs Digital Archives, US administration disregarding the UN verdict, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Contras&oldid=992982059, History of the foreign relations of the United States, All Wikipedia articles written in American English, Articles containing Spanish-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from May 2011, Articles containing Japanese-language text, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, All rural areas of Nicaragua with the exclusion of Pacific Coast, from. [14]:213 This was at least part of the reason the Iran–Contra affair proved so humiliating for the United States when the story first broke in November 1986 that the US itself was selling arms to Iran. "The contras are made up of a combination of: ... anti-Sandinista opponents of ex-dictator Somoza (some of the members of the FDN political directorate eg Messrs. Chamorro and Cruz)..." As seen at: Gill 1984, p. 204, International Court of Justice (IV) (1986), p. 446, "Although Calero had opposed Somoza, the FDN had its roots in two insurgent groups made up of former National Guardsmen..." As seen at: Lee et al. On this day in history, in 1981, President Reagan gave the CIA authority to establish the Contras, a rebel force meant to attack the Sandinista government across multiple stages consisting of side-scrolling, pseudo-3D, or boss battles. seq. His approval ratings suffered "the largest single drop for any U.S. president in history", from 67% to 46% in November 1986, according to a The New York Times/CBS News poll. The Iran–Contra affair (Persian: ماجرای ایران-کنترا‎, Spanish: Caso Irán–Contra), popularized in Iran as the McFarlane affair, the Iran–Contra scandal, or simply Iran–Contra, was a political scandal in the United States that occurred during the second term of the Reagan Administration. As seen at: International Court of Justice 1986, Dissenting Opinion of Judge Schwebel, "...concluded that the United States essentially acted lawfully in exerting armed pressures against Nicaragua, both directly and through its support of the contras, because Nicaragua's prior and sustained support of armed insurgency in El Salvador was tantamount to an armed attack upon El Salvador against which the United States could react in collective self-defence in El Salvador's support." [7], By 1989 the US backed Contra war and economic isolation had inflicted severe economic suffering on Nicaraguans. However "limited," those investigations established that "Soon after taking office in 1981, the Reagan Administration secretly and abruptly changed United States policy." [48] McFarlane met directly with Iranian officials associated with Rafsanjani, who sought to establish U.S.-Iranian relations in an attempt to free the four remaining hostages. New Brunswick, NY: Transaction Publishers. The March 1982 DoJ-CIA Crimes Reporting MOU did not require that CIA report to DoJ narcotics trafficking violations by assets, or independent contractors associated with the Contras because assets and independent contractors were not defined as "employees" for crimes … Almost from the time he took office in 1981, a major goal of the Reagan administration was the overthrow of the left-wing Sandinista government in Nicaragua and to support the Contra rebels. [49] It "is now a given; it is true", the Washington Post declared in 1986, "the Sandinistas are communists of the Cuban or Soviet school"; that "The Reagan administration is right to take Nicaragua as a serious menace—to civil peace and democracy in Nicaragua and to the stability and security of the region"; that we must "fit Nicaragua back into a Central American mode" and "turn Nicaragua back toward democracy," and with the "Latin American democracies" "demand reasonable conduct by regional standard."[50]. Senior administration officials secretly facilitated the sale of arms to the Khomeini government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which was the subject of an arms embargo. [52], During a secret meeting in Frankfurt in October 1986, North told Bahramani that: "Saddam Hussein must go". [22] A popular and charismatic leader, Pastora initially saw his group develop quickly. Of those polled, 85% opposed any further US aid to the Contras; 40% believed the Sandinista government to be democratic, while 48% believed it to be not democratic. Some UDN members resigned because they would not associate themselves with the National Guard under any circumstances, but Cardenal and I and others believed the CIA's assurances that we, the civilians, would control the Guardsmen in the new organization that was to be created." They chose this date to facilitate free and fair elections in Nicaragua in February 1990 (even though the Reagan administration had pushed for a delay of contra disbandment). [29] Now having a reason to trust the "moderates", Reagan approved the transaction, which was meant to be between Israel and the "moderates" in Iran, with the United States reimbursing Israel. [20][21] Having talked to an Israeli diplomat David Kimche and Ledeen, McFarlane learned that the Iranians were prepared to have Hezbollah release American hostages in Lebanon in exchange for Israelis shipping Iran American weapons. Decades of war, war crimes, and treason. As seen at: Lee et al. 5311–5316, and 3/23/89, pp. The Contras for the most part consisted of right-wing extremists, former land elites and ex-members of the feared and vicious Guardia Nacional (whose head had been a Somoza for most of the forty years prior to 1979), which was responsible for the most egregious human rights violations under the previous Somoza regime. [64] The 200-page report was the most comprehensive of any released,[64] criticizing the actions of Oliver North, John Poindexter, Caspar Weinberger, and others. (June 1989). [26] A subsequent autonomy statute in September 1987 largely defused Miskito resistance.[27]. In August 1996, the San Jose Mercury News initiated an extended series of articles linking the CIA’s “contra” army to the crack cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles. [49], The American delegation comprised McFarlane, North, Cave (a retired CIA officer who worked in Iran in the 1960s–70s), Teicher, Israeli diplomat Amiram Nir and a CIA translator. Chamarro’s election was a repudiation of over 10 years of Sandinista rule that had been characterized by a destructive war with the Contras and a failing … ... JFK and Johnson should have gone down for war crimes in Vietnam. On this critical point, the shredding of documents by Poindexter, North and others, and the death of Casey, leave the record incomplete".[7]. [99] He wrote that he did not learn the full extent of the Iran dealings until he was briefed by Senator David Durenberger regarding a Senate inquiry into them. War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity. The official justification for the arms shipments was that they were part of an operation to free seven American hostages being held in Lebanon by Hezbollah, a paramilitary group with Iranian ties connected to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. World War I was the first major international conflict to take place following the codification of war crimes at the Hague Convention of 1907, including derived war crimes, such as the use of poisons as weapons, as well as crimes against humanity, and derivative crimes against humanity, such as torture, and genocide. [12] The rest of those indicted or convicted were all pardoned in the final days of the presidency of George H. W. Bush, who had been Vice President at the time of the affair. [66]:701 The Democratic-controlled United States Congress issued its own report on 18 November 1987, stating that "If the president did not know what his national security advisers were doing, he should have. If you were going to be directly rubbing up against the government, they wanted it more solid than it could probably ever be done. Following World War II there was an urgent need for a permanent international criminal court to prosecute those accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, but the Cold War intervened. [65] It also received assistance from personnel from other government agencies, especially from CIA personnel in Central America. "[61] Gust Avrakodos, who was responsible for the arms supplies to the Afghans at this time, was aware of the operation as well and strongly opposed it, in particular the diversion of funds allotted to the Afghan operation. Oliver North wrote that "Ronald Reagan knew of and approved a great deal of what went on with both the Iranian initiative and private efforts on behalf of the contras and he received regular, detailed briefings on both...I have no doubt that he was told about the use of residuals for the Contras, and that he approved it. [42] However, since the contras failed to win widespread popular support or military victories within Nicaragua,[42] opinion polls indicated that a majority of the U.S. public was not supportive of the contras,[44] the Reagan administration lost much of its support regarding its contra policy within Congress after disclosure of CIA mining of Nicaraguan ports,[45] and a report of the Bureau of Intelligence and Research commissioned by the State Department found Reagan's allegations about Soviet influence in Nicaragua "exaggerated",[46] Congress cut off all funds for the contras in 1985 by the third Boland Amendment. 5311–5317, and 3/23/89 pp. War crimes and atrocities by the American Military In every war in which the United States has been engaged there have been atrocities and war crimes committed by American troops. [14]:250 Following this, William Casey, head of the CIA, requested that the United States authorize sending a shipment of small missile parts to Iranian military forces as a way of expressing gratitude. [59]:623 The American historian James Canham-Clyne asserted that Iran–Contra affair and the NSC "going operational" were not departures from the norm, but were the logical and natural consequence of existence of the "national security state", the plethora of shadowy government agencies with multi-million dollar budgets operating with little oversight from Congress, the courts or the media, and for whom upholding national security justified almost everything. [97], In an interview with The Washington Post in August 1987, Bush stated that he was denied information about the operation and did not know about the diversion of funds. The decision came several … '"[8] After the weapon sales were revealed in November 1986, Reagan appeared on national television and stated that the weapons transfers had indeed occurred, but that the United States did not trade arms for hostages. [45] Throughout February 1986, weapons were shipped directly to Iran by the United States (as part of Oliver North's plan), but none of the hostages were released. burning civilian houses in captured towns. [25] The Americans believed that Rafsanjani had the power to order Hezbollah to free the American hostages and establishing a relationship with him by selling Iran arms would ultimately place Iran back within the American sphere of influence. 46 (2): 101–132. [24] Although Reagan claims that the arms sales were to a "moderate" faction of Iranians, the Walsh Iran/Contra Report states that the arms sales were "to Iran" itself,[28] which was under the control of the Ayatollah. Similarly, reporters neglected to investigate many leads indicating that Oliver North was running the Contra operation from his office in the National Security Council. government.[40]. Informar de un abuso. Voters", "U.S. Endorses Contra Plan as Prod to Democracy in Nicaragua", "Turnover in Nicaragua; NICARAGUAN OPPOSITION ROUTS SANDINISTAS; U.S. [28] However, the evidence of a very close relationship between the contras and the United States was considered overwhelming and incontrovertible. This was the first public report of the weapons-for-hostages deal. [96], On 27 July 1986, Israeli counterterrorism expert Amiram Nir briefed Vice President Bush in Jerusalem about the weapon sales to Iran. Leer más. The number and nature of the war crimes committed by Japan against all of its enemies in World War II made retaliation against them more palatable to many. 5373–5380, 5385–5387; Chapter 5 Fawn Hall 147, royster, North Trial Testimony, 3/22/89, pp. [14]:213 After Iraq invaded Iran in September 1980, Iran desperately needed weapons and spare parts for its current weapons. [65], The report published by the Tower Commission was delivered to the president on 26 February 1987. Crack became a nightmare within the U.S especially for the African-American community. States had already begun to support armed opponents of the President 's broad authorization and fear in Managua '' contra... Fsln won 39 contra war and all the civilian targets the U.S. government to end its complicity with war. The charges strong objections to it:250 North also claimed that Reagan told! Or Poindexter, suddenly $ 10 million raised, more than $ 1 was... 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