Drugs, US corporations and CIA

19 Oct, 2010

Mujahid Kamran

On October 12, 2010, TheNation reported that the US was pressurising Pakistan not to implement its agreement with Russia against Afghan drug traffickers. Is this pressure merely intended to save the skin of Karzai’s brother and other Afghan drug barons, or is there a deeper reason behind this pressure? Researchers have dug out the profound connection between the global drug trade and the secret organs of the US government working in the interest of several American corporations.

In his recent book titled The Road to 9/11, Professor Peter Dale Scott writes of the “CIA habit of turning to drug-supported off-the-books assets for fighting wars - in Indochina and the South China Sea in the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s; and in Afghanistan and Central America in the 1980s; in Colombia in the 1990s; and again in Afghanistan in 2001.” He establishes: “US toleration of and even alliance with Al-Qaeda-backed jihadi groups - notably in Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Bosnia, and Kosovo - have been in areas of major interest to US oil companies.”

The title of a chapter of Michael Ruppert’s bestseller on 9/11, Crossing the Rubicon, reads as follows: “Wall Street is CIA and Drug Money is King!” One may ask, how much money is generated by the global drug trade? According to one French publication in the year 2000, $500 billion US worth of drug money was being converted to white money annually. Michael Ruppert gave a similar estimate in the year 2004; he estimated that drug money generates cash worth $400-500 billion annually. He was once told, on conditions of anonymity, by an expert who worked for the US government and whose job was to keep an eye on the global cash flows: “Its much much higher than that. Every conference that I go to is attended by the CIA, and we all round off the figure to around $700 billion.”

Two drugs that bring the greatest profits are cocaine and heroin. In US alone, 400 to 500 metric tons of cocaine is consumed every year. On the other hand, the total consumption of heroin worldwide is in the range 400 to 500 metric tons. Sixty percent of heroin consumed in the US also comes from Columbia. The rest of the heroin that is consumed in the US, and the rest of the world, comes entirely from Afghanistan.

Black money from drug trade is laundered to corporate accounts. Corporations show this money as their profits, enhance their stocks, and earn further profits. A few years ago, the US Department of Justice gave a figure of $1.5 trillion for money laundered into America. In view of the above, Afghanistan is not just important because it is a possible route for transport of oil and gas. On account of its heroin, Afghanistan is profoundly important for the US corporations. In their ignorance, the Taliban banned cultivation of poppy in 2001 and strangulated the US corporations. This is what, according to Ruppert, became the immediate possible cause of the US attack on Afghanistan. In his painful book, Powderburns, a former Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) agent Celerino Castello has narrated the horrific details of the collusion between US agencies and the drug mafia. In a nutshell, his book establishes that the US agencies are sabotaging the war against drugs through collusion with the drug mafia. Whenever an honest DEA officer wants to do something effective against the drug mafia, his job and his life are put on line. It is out of fear that many officers remain quiet about this fact.

Writing about Edgar Hoover, Michael Levine has stated that eight US Presidents were aware that Hoover was running a private police force in violation of every law of the land; however, all these Presidents decided to remain quiet about this. He further states that if a single individual could so terrorise eight Presidents of the United States of America, one may well imagine what kind of a club the CIA wields over the current crop of US leaders.

Colonel Oliver North, who played a key role in promoting the Iran-Iraq conflict, was involved in the infamous Iran-Contra affair. Under a secret project, drugs were smuggled into the US and sold to the blacks in San Francisco in particular. The proceeds were used to purchase equipment that was sent to Iran. Similarly, when a particular lobby was engaged in Clinton’s character assassination, he ordered that the Inspector General’s report on the connection between CIA and drug trafficking be made public. The report clearly established the involvement of CIA in drug trafficking. The report redefines the word “agent”, and then concludes that while CIA agents were not involved in drug trafficking, various contractors, and pilots used by the CIA, were indeed involved.

During Clinton’s time, as Governor of Arkansas, drug trafficking took place under official patronage. Even today one may locate on the web, an excellent article titled The Crimes of Mena: Gray Money. Investigative reporters provided evidence that the Government of Arkansas invested $60 million of black money in business through a company located in Barbados, West Indies.

Michael Ruppert has pointed out that during investigations into money laundering, the names of a number of internationally known companies had come to light. Similarly, the US airplane Hercules C-130 cannot be exported without permission of the State Department. The CIA first secured 28 such planes for the Forest Department for use in extinguishing forest fires. Then these were handed over to private companies. It transpired later that these companies worked for the CIA. These planes were then seen in Panama, Mexico, Angola and even Middle East. In 1994, cocaine worth $1 billion was seized from one of these planes. Ruppert writes: “The use of drug trade to secure economic advantage for an imperialist nation is at least as old as the British East India Company’s first smuggling of opium from India into China in the late 1600s….They did it for 300 years. When something works that well, the ruling elites rarely let go of it.”

The writer is Vice Chancellor of the University of the Punjab.

Go to link