CIA Visits South Central

Fri, 15 Nov 1996 23:18:00, -0500

Eyewitness report by Herman Padilla

CIA director John Deutsch along with congressmembers Jane Harman
Julian Dixion, and Juanita-Millender-McDonald sat before a well-informed
and often angry audience at Locke High School in South Central Los Angeles
today. Security was very tight as the LAPD, LA city school Police, and the
CIA all combined for a show of force. I myself have attended a couple of
Presidential visits and Presidential candidate visits to
the Los Angeles area and never has their security matched that of the CIA
director's today.
Once thru the security corridor and pass the political speech making we
got to the heart of the matter John Deutsch addressing the people of
south central.
John Deutsch said he only wanted to make four points.
1) First he abhorred Drugs and the damage they cause and so does the CIA
2) The CIA is very active in stopping the flow of drugs into the United States.
3) A full and fair investigation into this matter was going to take place
4) That once the investigation is complete all the facts will be made public
and those responsible (if) any wrongdoing is discovered will be brought to
The audience was opening skeptical of these assertions.
During the Questions and answer period many well thought out
and revealing questions were asked few solid answers were given.
I will attempt to the best of my abilities to recreate some of those
questions and answers for you now.
Q. What is the difference between a CIA asset and a CIA contract agent.
A. No difference.
Q. Are there CIA asset among the news media
A. (Question was ignored)
Q. How come the White House needed an independent counsel to
investigate matters such as the travel office and suicide of an aide but
the CIA feels it can investigate itself thru its own inspector general
office no independent counsel is needed?
A. The Inspector general office is best qualified to do this type of
investigation and no specific criminal charges have been made so
an independent counsel is not called for.
Q. (Rickey Ross's brother and Rickey Ross's co-defendent were in the
audience) One asked why the CIA had told the trial judge that the
CIA had no knowledge of them.
A. The trial judge asked us by name about 5 individuals in this case
if they had worked for the CIA or were considered Assets of the
agency. The answer is No, we have no record of any of the
individuals mentioned by the judge.
Q. (One member of the audience identified himself as Michel Ruppert
a former LAPD Narcotics Investigator in South Central LA an 18
year veteran of the force and someone who had first hand knowledge
of the CIA selling drugs in Los Angeles. (Huge Applause from the
audience) Ruppert went on to name three specific codename
operations 'Watchtower' 'Pegasus' (?) and A______(?) {sorry
alot of noise and things going by very fast but I'm certain about
first operation's name}. Ruppert said that the CIA tried to directly
recruit him into its operations to cover up what they were doing.
Ruppert said that when he tried to report what he knew there was
an attempt made upon his life.
A. You can give your information to:
The LAPD. (Big laugh from the audience)
Give the information to myself
or Give the information to your elected representative.
Q. Was John Hall of costa rica a CIA asset
A. No
Q. Was Walter Pincus (Washington Post reporter) a CIA asset
A. No.
Q. When you were the undersecretary of defense and as someone
who has a PHD in Chemistry were you not involved with the
development of chemical weapon used during the Gulf War.
A. Ignored the question
Q. A person who identified themself as a lawyer asked that when
Ronald Regan signed executive order 12333 which privatized
intelligence operations and also gave then vice-president Bush,
presidential powers relating to the conduct of covert operations
and drug policy activities, (What) will your investigation do to
look into these off the book matters which are not official CIA
A. Give me the evidence (THEN) (my emphasis) I'll look into it.
(Must have been a good lawyer because he had a packet of
documents right there).
Q. A person who gave his name a Deacon Alexander, That in his
opinion this event was not an attempt to open up the investigation
but in reality an attempt to bring closure to it. He also said
attempt was made informing representative Maxine Waters about
this event
A. Representative Juanita-McDonald denied that it was anything
other than an opportunity for the community to hear the director
himself address this issue.
As you can see my notes were not verbatim I had no recording equipment
with me. What I've done is reconstruct to the best of my ability what the
jest of what was said. No mention was made by Mr. Deutsch of the past
history of the CIA, except for a passing reference to the Kerry Commission
hearings. Director Deutsch repeatedly stated the CIA would investigate the
matter itself thur its own inspector general office.
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