Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the Dakota Access pipeline protests or news about this unprecedented US presidential election—and our coverage is never paid for by the oil and gas companies or the campaigns and superPACs. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How? This model of news depends on your support. Today, less than 1% of our visitors support Democracy Now! with a donation each year. If even 3% of our website visitors donated just $8 per month, we could cover our basic operating expenses for a year. Pretty amazing right? If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

Hunger Strike Concerning Crack Explosion in U.S.

October 16, 1996
Story
WATCH FULL SHOW

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 buy 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, 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.


The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.