Portland NORML News - Thursday, December 25, 1997

US Drug Czar Hails Planned Panama Pact (Agreement In Principle
Uses Pretext Of Drug Interdiction To Let US Troops Stay After 1999)

From: Scott 
To: Multiple recipients of list 
Subject: Czar Makes Pact With Panama
03:15 PM ET 12/25/97

U.S. drug czar hails planned Panama pact

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Clinton's drug czar hailed
Thursday an agreement in principle to create a multilateral
anti-drug center that would let U.S. troops stay in Panama after
giving up control of the canal in two years.

The planned creation of the multinational counternarcotics
center in Panama is ``an impressive step to substantially
increase cooperation and coordinated action against drug
trafficking in the hemisphere,'' retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey
said in a statement read by an aide.

McCaffrey, a former commander of the U.S. Southern Command,
which moved its headquarters from Panama to Miami in September,
said the center reflected ``growing optimism that true
hemispheric cooperation can be accomplished'' to fight the drug

Negotiators were to meet next week to work out final details
of the center, the State Department said Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Panama's President Ernesto Perez Balladares
announced tentative agreement on the center, to be based at
Howard Air Force Base in Panama.

Under the terms of the Panama Canal Treaties signed in 1977,
the United States is to hand over full control of the
interoceanic waterway to the Panamanian government by Dec. 31,
1999. The treaties were signed by then-U.S. President Jimmy
Carter and Panama's leader, the late Omar Torrijos.

Marijuana Not Humorous (Ignorant Letter To Editor
From Altoona, Ohio, Police Chief)

Subj: US IA: LTE: Marijuana Not Humorous
From: "Carl E. Olsen" 
Date: Sat, 03 Jan 1998 08:57:23 -0500
Source: The Altoona Herald - Mitchellville Index
Pubdate: Thursday, December 25, 1997
Section: Viewpoint - Letters to the Editor
Page: 4A
Contact: Mail: Post Office Box 427, Altoona, Iowa 50009
Fax: 515-967-0553

Editor's note: Besides the MAP website, this debate by letter is also at
the following website under Drug Policy Forum of Iowa - Iowa Media:


To the editor:

Angry and emotional outbursts from pot-smokers. If the cause were not so
tragic, it would be humorous. But ... this is your brain on drugs.

John L. Gray
Altoona police chief

God's Troops On Front Lines In War On Drugs (Woe Unto Babylon - Colorado
DEA Agents For Christ Bear False Witness In Order To Enforce A Morality
Never Justified By New Testament)

Date: Fri, 9 Jan 1998 01:01:35 -0700 (MST)
To: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" (cohip@levellers.org)
Subject: DEA Agents for Christ
Newshawk: "Colo. Hemp Init. Project" 
Source:   Rocky Mountain News
Contact:  letters@denver-rmn.com
Pubdate:  Thu, 25 Dec 1997
400 W. Colfax
Denver, CO 80204
Phone: (303) 892-5000
Fax: (303) 892-5499
Email: letters@denver-rmn.com
Web: http://www.denver-rmn.com
Feedback: letters@denver-rmn.com

By Jean Torkelson
Rocky Mountain News Religion Writer

The drug deal was going bad.

"Get in the car," the trafficker barked to undercover agent Vince

Sanchez, who caught sight of a pistol underneath the car seat,
put on his best macho and annoyed act.

"No way I'm getting' the car," he said. Standing in the parking
lot of a Denver restaurant, Sanchez was aware of something else, and it
consoled him even more than the slouching undercover agents packed into a
nearby flotilla of cares.

"You got six guys behind you," says Sanchez, "but if the Lord
wants you to go home, he's the one calling the shots."

Sanchez got home, safe to fight another day as an undercover
agent for the Drug Enforcement Administration.

While all the agents cover for each other, Sanchez, 36, has an
added reason to trust seven or eight of them -- they are fellow

One of them, Dan, now 38, was there as backup on the drug deal
going bad.

"I really felt good I had a brother waiting for me," says
Sanchez, a divorced father raising his daughter alone.

Dan and Todd, 35, are two of Sanchez's closest friends in the
Lord. They, unlike Sanchez, are involved in current undercover
assignments and don't reveal their last names.

Their work is dangerous and delicate, putting them in regular
contact with, as Todd puts it, "not just sleazeballs, but mid- to
high-level traffickers, attorneys, physicians, high-profile businessmen,
people who conduct their transactions in ties and suits."

While Christianity has a long tradition of justifying
self-defense killing, undercover agents also may have to weave
relationships with lies and deception.

How do they square that with their stringent sense of right and

"Our lying is not for personal gain," Sanchez says. "It's for
the people of Colorado and the people of the United States."

Second, the Bible has precedents where God's elect lied to spies
and evil-doers.

Third, born-again Christians believe "the blood of Christ is going
to cover all these lies," he says.

Christian values, with their special emphasis on home life,
sometimes appear startlingly foreign in everyday life, as one DEA
supervisor learned.

"I'll never forget Dan's first undercover (job)," says Ron
Hollingshead, who considers himself a mainstream Christian.

Dan performed coolly and pocketed the goods. He and the
trafficker shook hands and parted.

In the rude, macho world of the street, this was Dan's first
score, a time for raw jokes, high-fives and stiff drinks.

But Dan had disappeared. Minute lengthened, and Hollingshead
began to mull possibilities, none of them good.

When Dan finally reappeared, his boss control snapped: "Where the
hell did you go?"

Dan grinned: "I wanted to call my wife and tell her I just bought

"I never encountered that in 30 years," says Hollingshead. "From
the minute it happened I knew he was different. It chokes me up sometimes
to talk about it."




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