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Hunger Strike Concerning Crack Explosion in U.S.

October 16, 1996
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Radio personality and civil rights activist Joe Madison joined activist Dick Gregory in a hunger strike yesterday to pressure the U.S. government to admit that it played a role in the crack explosion in America. Madison and Gregory, as well as members of Congress, like California’s Maxine Waters, are calling for an independent investigation and release of records related to charges raised in the San Jose Mercury News by investigative journalist Gary Webb. The series of articles called "The Dark Alliance" revealed that the Central Intelligence Agency protected a Nicaraguan drug dealer who introduced crack into the black community of Los Angeles and funneled the profits to the Nicaraguan Contras so that the contras could by weapons to fight their war against the Sandinistas. Madison said his hunger strike is a small sacrifice, "compared to the sacrifices that the family of a crack addict makes." He said, "If it stops our communities from being sacrificed by those who turn a blind eye when illegal drugs are being dropped on our doorsteps, then I’ll do it."

Both Dick Gregory and Joe Madison were arrested twice last month outside the CIA and DEA which demanding to meet with the heads of those agencies to discuss the revelations in the San Jose Mercury News series. Both the CIA and the Justice Department are looking into the charges.

Speech by Michael Levine, a former DEA agent who’s written a book about his experiences called Deep Cover.


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