December 13, 2004 Contact: Mikael Moore, 202-225-2201

Congresswoman Maxine Waters Stunned by Death of Gary Webb Who Courageously Investigated and Revealed Connections Between CIA’s Policies and Spread of Crack-Cocaine

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Los Angeles) made the following statement upon learning of journalist Gary Webb’s death:  

“I am stunned and pained with the loss of Gary Webb. Gary was a friend and one of the finest investigative journalists that our country has ever seen. The Dark Alliance series was one of the most profound pieces of journalism I have ever witnessed. Gary’s work was not only in depth, revealing and confrontational but it single handedly created discussion and debate about the proliferation of crack cocaine and the role of the CIA. 

“Unfortunately, the major news papers attempted to silence him by undermining his personal character and his professional integrity. Through his diligence, he has brought to the attention of the American public the failed policies of the CIA and the drug war.  

“I spent two years working with Gary following his revelations and I am convinced that his work was factual and well documented. Unfortunately, as stated before, the attack on Gary Webb by major media outlets such as the LA Times, Washington Post and the New York Times were devastating and destructive.

“It is interesting that at the time that he uncovered and exposed the deficiencies of the CIA, he was attacked as rogue. It is only recently as an unintended bi-product of the war on terror that the rampant problems and mismanagement of the CIA have come to light. 

“When he pointed out the numerous red flags concerning the CIA including their turning of a blind eye to the trafficking of cocaine from Nicaragua during the conflict between the contras and the Sandinistas, he was painted as the enemy.  

“Gary Webb is a journalist of courage and I truly believe that the latest revelations about the intelligence communities’ failures have vindicated him. 

“I will miss him and in his memory I can only hope that rather than silencing, we as a country will cultivate and encourage courageous truth seeking journalists like Gary Webb,” Congresswoman Maxine Waters said.