Tuesday, October 28, 2014

1993-94 - Drugs - Haiti - C.I.A.



November 1, 1993, New York Times, Key Haiti Leaders Said to Have Been in the C.I.A.'s Pay-Aristide Aides Angered--Say Payments Prove Agency's Reports Critical of Leader Have Been One-Sided, by Tim Weiner,
November 7, 1993, New York Times, Letters, U.S. Can't Feel Proud About Role in Haiti, by Joaquin Godoy,
November 14, 1993, New York Times, page A12, C.I.A. Formed Haitian Unit Later Tied to Narcotics Trade, by Stephen Engelberg, Howard W. French and Tim Weiner and was written by Mr. Weiner,
November 20, 1993, New York Times, Anti-Drug Unit of C.I.A. Sent Ton of Cocaine to U.S. in 1990, by Tim Weiner,
December 3, 1993, New York Times, The CIA Drug Connection Is as Old as the Agency, by Larry Collins,
March 14, 1994, New York Times, Ames Case Poses Task for C.I.A.: A Microscopic Search of Decades, by Tim Weiner,
April 22, 1994, New York Times, Colombian Drug Trafficker Implicates Haitian Police Chief, by Tim Weiner,
May 25, 1994, New York Times, Despite Embargo, Haiti's Rich Seem to Get Richer, by Howard W. French,
June 8, 1994, New York Times, U.S. Says Haiti's Military Runs Cocaine, by Howard W. French,
July 15, 1994, New York Times, page A1, U.S. Making Moves for Haiti Action, by Eric Schmitt,
July 26, 1994, New York Times, Letter, Haiti Is Washington's Dirty Little Secret, by Kenneth B. Wright,
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November 1, 1993, New York Times, Key Haiti Leaders Said to Have Been in the C.I.A.'s Pay-Aristide Aides Angered--Say Payments Prove Agency's Reports Critical of Leader Have Been One-Sided, by Tim Weiner,

Washington, October 31. Key members of the military regime controlling Haiti and blocking the return of its elected President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, were paid by the Central Intelligence Agency for information from the mid-1980's at least until the 1991 coup that forced Mr. Aristide from power, according to American officials.

As part of its normal intelligence-gathering operations, the C.I.A. cultivated, recruited and paid generals and politicians for information about everything from cocaine smuggling to political ferment in Haiti, they said.

Without naming names, a Government official familiar with the payments said that `several of the principal players in the present situation were compensated by the U.S. Government.' It was not clear when the payments ended or how much money they involved, although they were described as modest.

REPORTING CALLED ONE-SIDED

Supporters of Mr. Aristide said the payments proved that the C.I.A.'s primary sources of information in Haiti were Mr. Aristide's political enemies, and they criticized the agency's reporting on Haiti as one-sided.

Michael D. Barnes, a former member of Congress who is a spokesman for Mr. Aristide, said, 'Given what the C.I.A. has done in the past two weeks, namely the attempted character assassination of Jean-Bertrand Aristide, it wouldn't be surprising to learn that the C.I.A. had been working with his political enemies in Haiti for many years.

But Representative Robert G. Torricelli, a New Jersey Democrat who serves on the House Intelligence and Foreign Affairs Committees and who confirmed the payments, defended the intelligence relationships as crucial to United States policy-makers in trying to gain an understanding of Haitian politics.

"The U.S. Government develops relationships with ambitious and bright young men at the beginning of their careers and often follows them through their public service,' he said. 'It includes people in sensitive positions in the current situation in Haiti."

A member of Congress familiar with the recruiting of sources of information within the Haitian Government said the information received was a mixed bag. "There are things we should have been getting for the money which we didn't get--for example, on the narcotics side," he said. Members of the current regime are suspected of receiving lucrative payments from drug traffickers to protect shipments of cocaine passing through Haitian airfields en route to the United States.

The C.I.A's activities in Haiti also included a covert operation, authorized by President Ronald Reagan and the National Security Council, which involved an aborted attempt to influence an election held in January 1988, the officials said.

Haiti was then under the control of a military ruler, Lieut. Gen. Henri Namphy, who assured the Reagan Administration that the elections would be free and fair. But the ballot was widely perceived as rigged by the military, and the campaign was marked by killings of civilians.

ARISTIDE URGED BOYCOTT

Mr. Aristide, who was not a candidate, had urged a boycott of the election. The operation undertaken by the C.I.A. aimed at seeing the election go forward, the officials said, but it also involved plans to slip campaign money to candidates. In a rare action, the payments were blocked by the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, the officials said. The attempt was first reported today by the Los Angeles Times.

In the 1980's, the United States undertook covert operations and military actions throughout the Caribbean and Latin America to support pro-United States and anti-Communist governments. Several prominent figures in the region were on the United States intelligence payroll during the decade.

The officials who described the payments to Haitian generals and politicians said they were not intended to install any one leader as the President of Haiti.

In 1990, in the first free election in 20th-century Haiti, Mr. Aristide won 67.5 percent of the vote in a field of 10 candidates. He was overthrown in a September 1991 coup. The military regime controlling Haiti has blocked his return--which was to have taken place Saturday under an accord negotiated by the Clinton Administration and signed by the military leaders last summer--with a widespread campaign of intimidation, violence and murder.

Supporters of Mr. Aristide say the C.I.A., which does not make policy but which can influence policy-makers through its reporting, has undermined the chances for his return. In recent briefings to Congress, Brian Latell, the C.I.A.'s chief analyst for Latin American affairs, has described Mr. Aristide as unstable and as having a history of mental problems.

In a 1992 report widely circulated in Washington, Mr. Latell described a meeting with Lieut. Gen. Raoul Cedras, Haiti's current military dictator, and praised him as one of "the most promising group of Haitian leaders to emerge since the Duvalier family dictatorship was overthrown in 1986."

The Clinton Administration, in turn, questioned the C.I.A.'s analyses and praised Father Aristide as a rational and reasonable man.

The officials who described the payments to generals and politicians in the current regime in exchange for information said they were a normal and necessary part of gathering intelligence in a foreign country.

"These relationships are crucial so that we can anticipate changes in volatile societies," Representative Torricelli said. He said the quality and quantity of information the C.I.A. provided on Haiti was generally praiseworthy.

But Robert Pastor, the chief National Security Officer for Latin American affairs from 1977 to 1981, said, "It appears that the portrait of Aristide is seriously flawed. Whether that is in part due to intelligence contacts that began as a result of these operations is a legitimate and important question that needs an answer."
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November 7, 1993, New York Times, Letters, U.S. Can't Feel Proud About Role in Haiti, by Joaquin Godoy,

To the Editor:

Re "Key Haiti Leaders Said to Have Been in the C.I.A.'s Pay" (front page, Nov. 1): Repulsive is the word to describe the news we are getting on United States policy toward Haiti from the early 1980's until 1991.

I am struck by the disclosure of a covert operation authorized by President Ronald Reagan to influence the election in 1988, which resulted in the killing of hundreds of civilians; by the Central Intelligence Agency's recruiting and paying Haitian generals; by the character assassination of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide fabricated by the same agency in 1990 to discredit him after the election he won by 67 percent of the vote, which gave the obvious approval signal to the military for his overthrow in the September 1991 coup.

No wonder Lieut. Gen. Raoul Cedras feels solid as a rock. Why should he surrender his power to someone whom United States policy makers have been destroying slowly and surely?

JOAQUIN GODOY

Hato Rey, P.R., Nov. 2, 1993
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November 14, 1993, New York Times, page A12, C.I.A. Formed Haitian Unit Later Tied to Narcotics Trade, by Stephen Engelberg, Howard W. French and Tim Weiner and was written by Mr. Weiner,

WASHINGTON, Nov. 13— The Central Intelligence Agency created an intelligence service in Haiti in the mid-1980's to fight the cocaine trade, but the unit evolved into an instrument of political terror whose officers at times engaged in drug trafficking, American and Haitian officials say.

American officials say the C.I.A. cut its ties to the Haitian organization shortly after the 1991 military coup against Haiti's first democratically elected President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

Three former chiefs of the Haitian unit, the National Intelligence Service, known as S.I.N. from its initials in French, are now on the United States Treasury Department's list of Haitian officials whose assets in the United States were frozen this month because of their support for the military leaders blocking Father Aristide's return to power.

Analyses Are Criticized

The disclosure of the American role in creating the agency in 1986 comes amid increasing Congressional and public debate about the intelligence relationship between the United States and Haiti, the richest and poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere.

Supporters of Father Aristide contend that the C.I.A. is undermining the chances for his return with analyses skewed by a misplaced trust in his military foes.

The agency paid key members of the junta now in power for political and military information up until the ouster of Father Aristide in 1991. A review of the C.I.A.'s activities in Haiti under the Reagan and Bush Administrations, based on documents and interviews with current and former officials, confirms that senior C.I.A. officers have long been deeply skeptical about the stability and politics of President Aristide, a leftist priest.

C.I.A. Help for Aristide

No evidence suggests that the C.I.A backed the coup or intentionally undermined President Aristide. In fact, the agency has acted to help him at times, for example through a program that is now training bodyguards to protect him should he return to Haiti from his exile in the United States.

Though much of the C.I.A.'s activity in Haiti remains secret, the emerging record reveals both failures and achievements in recent years.

Having created the Haitian intelligence service, the agency failed to insure that several million dollars spent training and equipping the service from 1986 to 1991 was actually used in the war on drugs. The unit produced little narcotics intelligence. Senior members committed acts of political terror against Aristide supporters, including interrogations that included torture, and threatened last year to kill the local chief of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration.

On the other hand, United States officials said, one senior Haitian intelligence officer dissuaded soldiers from killing President Aristide during the 1991 coup. The C.I.A. also helped to save the lives of at least six Aristide supporters after the coup, evacuating them in a late-night rescue that involved the Navy's elite SEAL unit, officials said.

The C.I.A. also had a mixed track record in analyzing the fall of the 30-year Duvalier family dictatorship in 1986. The agency's analysts did not foresee the political violence that led to the collapse of elections in 1987 and the 1991 coup. But the analysts, contradicting the White House and the State Department, correctly predicted this year that the Haitian military would block President Aristide's scheduled return in October.

Members of the Congressional panels that oversee the C.I.A. say the agency's intelligence-gathering helped American policy makers bewildered by the political chaos that followed the fall of the Duvalier dictatorship, including a series of military coups, and by Father Aristide's overwhelming victory in the December 1990 election.

Lawmaker Cites C.I.A.'s 'Bum Rap'

"The problems of Haiti are problems of policy, not intelligence," said Representative Dan Glickman, a Kansas Democrat who heads the House intelligence committee. "In some cases, intelligence gets a bum rap. From the interviews we've had with the agency, I don't get any feeling that our goal was to preserve military dictatorship in Haiti."

But Senator Christopher J. Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who received extensive briefings from the agency, asserted last week that the C.I.A.'s view of Haiti was distorted by its ties to the Haitian military. "A lot of the information we're getting is from the very same people who in front of the world are brutally murdering people," Senator Dodd said.

One crucial source of information for American intelligence over the years, according to two Government officials, was Lieut. Gen. Raoul Cedras, who leads the Haitian armed forces. The officials said he provided the United States Government with reports critical of Father Aristide. The officials did not provide details from those reports. Nor did they say whether the general was paid.

In 1957, Francois Duvalier rose to power in Haiti. A corrupt dictator, he consolidated his power with the aid of a 10,000-member gang known as the Tontons Macoute.

Four years later, he was threatened by a C.I.A. covert operation in which the agency supplied arms to opponents plotting a coup, according to a 1975 Senate report. The plot failed.

On his death in 1971, Mr. Duvalier bequeathed his regime to his son, Jean-Claude, who received nearly $400 million in American economic aid until a popular revolt toppled his Government and he fled the country in February 1986.

Shortly afterward the C.I.A. created the Haitian intelligence service, S.I.N. The agency was staffed solely with officers of the Haitian Army, which was already widely perceived as an unprofessional force with a tendency toward corruption. The stated purpose was to stem the flow of hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of cocaine through Haiti, a crucial transit point for drug traffickers.

Money for Agency Despite Aid Curb

The United States would gain information on the Haitian military by creating the unit; the Haitian military would obtain money, training and equipment from the C.I.A.

In intelligence parlance, it was a "liaison" relationship. The C.I.A. does not normally report to Congress on such relationships, citing the sensitivity of other nations to disclosures of secrets. That reduces the role of Congressional oversight.

S.I.N. received $500,000 to $1 million a year in equipment, training and financial support from the C.I.A., United States and Haitian Government officials say. The money may have sent a mixed message, for Congress was withholding about $1.5 million in aid for the Haitian military regime at the same time.

By late 1988, the agency decided to "distance itself" from the intelligence service, a senior United States official said. But the ties continued until October 1991, just after the Sept. 30 coup against Father Aristide, he said.

A 1992 Drug Enforcement Administration document described S.I.N. in the present tense, as "a covert counternarcotics intelligence unit which often works in unison with the C.I.A. at post."

The Haitian intelligence service provided little information on drug trafficking and some of its members themselves became enmeshed in the drug trade, American officials said. A United States official who worked at the American Embassy in Haiti in 1991 and 1992 said he took a dim view of S.I.N.

"It was a military organization that distributed drugs in Haiti," said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "It never produced drug intelligence. The agency gave them money under counternarcotics and they used their training to do other things in the political arena."

U.S. Drug Official Gets Death Threat

"The money that was spent to train these guys in the counter-narcotics field boggled the mind -- half a million to a million a year," the official said. "They were turning it around and using it for political reasons, against whatever group they wanted to gather information on."

In September 1992, the work of United States drug-enforcement officials in Haiti led to the arrest of a S.I.N. officer on cocaine charges by the Haitian authorities.

A few days later, the Drug Enforcement Administration's chief in Haiti, Tony Greco, received a death threat on his private telephone line in the American Embassy. The caller identified himself as the arrested intelligence officer's superior, United States Government records show. Mr. Greco immediately left Haiti and has not returned.

Three former chiefs of the Haitian intelligence service -- Col. Ernst Prudhomme, Col. Diderot Sylvain and Col. Leopold Clerjeune -- were named by the United States Treasury Department in a Nov. 1 order for seizure of their assets in the United States. The document named 41 people "who seized power illegally," helped anti-Aristide forces or "contributed to the violence in Haiti."

Haitian officials say those S.I.N. officers persecuted Father Aristide's supporters and used their C.I.A. training to spy on them.

"They were heavily involved in spying on so-called subversive groups," an exiled member of the Aristide Government said. "They were doing nothing but political repression. Father Aristide was one of their targets. They targeted people who were for change."

Between 1 A.M. and 3 A.M. on Nov. 2, 1989, Colonel Prudhomme, who headed S.I.N. and held the title of chief of national security, led a brutal interrogation of Evans Paul, the Mayor of Haiti's capital, Port-au-Prince, according to a sworn deposition taken from Mr. Paul in connection with a Federal lawsuit filed against senior Haitian military officers in 1991 in Miami.

Colonel Clerjeune also was present at the interrogation, which left Mr. Paul with five broken ribs and internal injuries, the Mayor said.

Mr. Paul, who opposed the military regime, was arrested by soldiers, beaten and taken to the police headquarters in Port-au-Prince, where the beatings continued, according to sworn statements. When Mr. Paul lost consciousness, he said, he was revived by soldiers holding a flame from a cigarette lighter under his nose.

"Prudhomme himself never touched me," Mr. Paul said in an interview from Haiti. "He played the role of the intellectual, the man who searched carefully for contradictions in your account -- the man who seemed to give direction to the whole enterprise. He wanted to present me to the world as a terrorist."

"He seemed to have so much information about my life, all the way from my childhood," the Mayor said. "It was if he had been following me step by step."

Last summer, Mr. Paul met his interrogator again. Colonel Prudhomme was part of the military delegation led by General Cedras at talks mediated by the United Nations in July at Governors Island in New York. The accord reached at that meeting called for General Cedras to step down by Oct. 15 and allow Mr. Aristide to return on Oct. 30. The military reneged on the accord.

But S.I.N. also produced a success story: Col. Alix P. Silva, who led the Haitian intelligence service from 1986 to 1988. In 1988, Colonel Silva compiled a list of 18 senior Haitian military officials whom he said should be cashiered for unprofessional conduct, corruption or cocaine trafficking. At the head of the list was Lieut. Gen. Prosper Avril, who seized power in a 1989 coup.

Forced into hiding when General Avril took power, Colonel Silva resurfaced after the 1990 election, in which Father Aristide won 67.5 percent of the vote in a field of 10 candidates. The colonel then served as Deputy Commander in Chief of the army under General Cedras, who betrayed President Aristide by ousting him in September 1991.

It was Colonel Silva, current and former American officials say, who persuaded Haitian soldiers not to shoot Father Aristide on the night of the coup. Although briefly a member of the Cedras junta, Colonel Silva was among a handful of Aristide supporters who were evacuated shortly after the coup in a clandestine flight from Haiti that was coordinated by the C.I.A. and a team of Navy commandos, the officials said.

Though derring-do may be part of the C.I.A.'s image, the agency's most important task is helping American leaders understand what goes on in the world. Its intelligence analysts, not its spies, hold sway in Washington.

The agency's leading analyst of Latin American affairs, Brian Latell, traveled to Port-au-Prince in July 1992 and recorded his trip in a three-page note that he later shared with members of Congressional intelligence committees. He met with General Cedras, who he said impressed him as "a conscientious military leader who genuinely wishes to minimize his role in politics."

That impression, Father Aristide's supporters say, contributed to the faith placed in General Cedras by United States policy makers, a faith broken when the general abrogated the Governor's Island accord.

Mr. Latell also reported that he "saw no evidence of oppressive rule" in Haiti.

Rights Report Tells A Different Story

"I do not wish to minimize the role the military plays in intimidating, and occasionally terrorizing real and suspected opponents," the analyst said, but "there is no systematic or frequent lethal violence aimed at civilians."

That conflicts with a State Department report for the same year, which said, "Haitians suffered frequent human rights abuses throughout 1992, including extra-judicial killings by security forces, disappearances, beatings and other mistreatment of detainees and prisoners, arbitrary arrests and detention and executive interference with the judicial process."

Mr. Glickman, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, defended Mr. Latell's work and said that no institutional bias afflicted the agency's reporting on Haiti.

But he said he had questions about "this whole counternarcotics involvement of the agency" and what good, if any, it achieved in Haiti.

Photo: Backers of Haiti's ousted President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide, say the C.I.A. is undermining the chances for his return with analyses skewed by misplaced trust in his military foes. As a United Nations fuel embargo intended to pressure the army continues, the price of sugar cane has risen because of the scarcity of fuel needed to transport it. A worker carted sugar cane in Port-au-Prince. (Associated Press) (pg. 12)
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November 20, 1993, New York Times, Anti-Drug Unit of C.I.A. Sent Ton of Cocaine to U.S. in 1990, by Tim Weiner,

A Central Intelligence Agency anti-drug program in Venezuela shipped a ton of nearly pure cocaine to the United States in 1990, Government officials said today.

No criminal charges have been brought in the matter, which the officials said appeared to have been a serious accident rather than an intentional conspiracy. But officials say the cocaine wound up being sold on the streets in the United States.

One C.I.A. officer has resigned, a second has been disciplined and a Federal grand jury in Miami is investigating.

The agency, made aware of a "60 Minutes" investigation of the matter scheduled for broadcast on Sunday, issued a statement today calling the affair "a most regrettable incident" involving "instances of poor judgment and management on the part of several C.I.A. officers."

The case involves the same program under which the agency created a Haitian intelligence service whose officers became involved in drug trafficking and acts of political terror. Its exposure comes amid growing Congressional skepticism about the role of the C.I.A. in the war on drugs.

In the mid-1980's, under orders from President Ronald Reagan, the agency began to set up anti-drug programs in the major cocaine-producing and trafficking capitals of Central and South America. In Venezuela it worked with the country's National Guard, a paramilitary force that controls the highways and borders.

Government officials said that the joint C.I.A.-Venezuelan force was headed by Gen. Ramon Guillen Davila, and that the ranking C.I.A. officer was Mark McFarlin, who had worked with anti-guerrilla forces in El Salvador in the 1980's. The mission was to infiltrate the Colombian gangs that ship cocaine to the United States.

In December 1989, officials of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency said, Mr. McFarlin and the C.I.A. chief of station in Venezuela, Jim Campbell, met with the drug agency's attache in Venezuela, Annabelle Grimm, to discuss a proposal to allow hundreds of pounds of cocaine to be shipped to the United States through Venezuela in an operation intended to win the confidence of the Colombian traffickers.

Unlike so-called "controlled shipments" that take place in criminal investigations, shipments that end with arrests and the confiscation of the drugs, these were to be "uncontrolled shipments," officials of the drug agency said. The cocaine would enter the United States without being seized, so as to allay all suspicion. The idea was to gather as much intelligence as possible on members of the drug gangs. Drug Agency Balked

The drug agency refused to take part in the operation and said it should be called off. In a transcript of the "60 Minutes" broadcast supplied to The New York Times, Ms. Grimm said Mr. McFarlin of the C.I.A. and General Guillen had gone ahead anyway.

"I really take great exception to the fact that 1,000 kilos came in, funded by U.S. taxpayer money," Ms. Grimm said, according to the transcript. "I found that particularly appalling."

D.E.A. officers and other Government officials gave this account of the cocaine shipments and subsequent investigations into their origins:

The C.I.A.-Venezuelan force accumulated more than 3,000 pounds of cocaine delivered to its undercover agents by Colombian traffickers and stored the cocaine in a truck at the intelligence agency's counter-narcotics center in Caracas. Most of the cocaine was flown to the United States in a series of shipments during 1990. DrugCocaine Seizureed at Miami Airport

In late 1990, United States Customs Service officials seized a shipment of nearly 1,000 pounds at Miami's international airport and discovered that it had been shipped by members of the Venezuelan National Guard. Investigators from the drug agency interviewed a Venezuelan undercover agent working with the C.I.A.'s counter-narcotics center, who told them that the shipments had been approved by the United States Government.

The investigators from the drug agency, unaware that the intelligence agency had any role in the affair, first set about trying to eliminate their own personnel as suspects. They found that a female drug enforcement officer in Caracas had a close relationship with Mr. McFarlin. Using information she had obtained from him, the drug agency then focused its attention on the C.I.A. officer and his colleague, General Guillen.

In June 1991 the United States Attorney in Miami sent a memorandum to the Justice Department proposing the indictment of the general.

"The fly in the ointment is that the dope was delivered to the United States," a senior Drug Enforcement Agency official said in an interview today. "If you're part of a drug shipment and you have knowledge that it is going to the U.S., whether or not you ever entered the U.S., you're culpable."

That month, Melvin Levitsky, then the chief State Department official overseeing international narcotics matters, met with officers of the Justice Department, the C.I.A. and the D.E.A. and explained that if the Justice Department brought an indictment against General Guillen, the United States might have to cut off assistance to Venezuela, causing major diplomatic problems. General Is Granted Immunity

The general was not indicted. In exchange for his cooperation, he was granted immunity from having his own words used against him. But the general apparently said nothing implicating the Central Intelligence Agency.

But in 1992 the intelligence agency's own inspector general completed a report on the affair and submitted it to the Senate Intelligence Committee. That report remains secret, although aspects of the affair have been widely reported in Venezuelan newspapers.

Former agency officers familiar with the report say it found no indication that anyone from the C.I.A. had profited from the affair. Mr. McFarlin has resigned from the agency, and a second officer was disciplined. No criminal charges are pending, although General Guillen has been subpoenaed to appear before a Federal grand jury in Miami, the C.I.A. said in a statement today.

The investigation crippled the agency's counter-narcotics center in Venezuela, but similar centers continue to operate in Bolivia, Peru, Colombia and other cocaine-trafficking countries, Government officials said. Such programs fall under the banner of "liaison relationships" with foreign intelligence agencies, and rarely if ever does the C.I.A. willingly report on these relationships to Congress.

In an interview last week, Representative Dan Glickman, the Kansas Democrat who heads the House Intelligence Committee, said the subject of C.I.A. anti-drug activities needed closer scrutiny by the agency's Congressional overseers.
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December 3, 1993, New York Times, The CIA Drug Connection Is as Old as the Agency, by Larry Collins,

Recent news item: The Justice Department is investigating allegations that officers of a special Venezuelan anti-drug unit funded by the CIA smuggled more than 2,000 pounds of cocaine into the United States with the knowledge of CIA officials - despite protests by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the organization responsible for enforcing U.S. drug laws.

That is a huge amount of cocaine. But it was hardly a first for the CIA. The agency has never been above using individuals or organizations with known links to drug trafficking if it thought they could help it further its national security mission.

Let us put the Venezuelan case in context: To protect its "assets" abroad, the CIA has ensured that the DEA's concerns outside the country were subordinated to its own. Until recently, no DEA country attaché overseas was allowed to initiate an investigation into a suspected drug trafficker or attempt to recruit an informant without clearance from the local CIA station chief. DEA country attachés are required to employ the standard State Department cipher, and all their transmissions are made available to the CIA station chief. The CIA also has access to all DEA investigative reports, and informants' and targets' identities when DEA activities outside the United States were involved.

In Costa Rica, when the war against Nicaragua's Sandinista government was at its peak and cocaine was beginning to pour into the United States, the DEA attaché wanted to place cameras at clandestine airstrips from which he suspected drugs were being flown to the United States. The CIA resident gave him a list of airstrips on which he was not to place cameras. They were the strips into which the CIA was flying arms for the contras. Some were also strips from which the DEA agent suspected drugs were being flown to the United States.

Shortly after the kidnapping and brutal murder of the DEA's Enrique Camarena in Mexico, Francis Mullen, the DEA administrator, was taken by the CIA station chief in Mexico City to Mexico's director of federal security, a man who, the station chief confided, was a CIA asset. The gentleman, Mr. Mullen told me, denied any knowledge of the affair. He was lying. A DEA investigation revealed that he had been connected - a man on the CIA payroll, no less - to the murder of a U.S. federal agent.

CIA ties to international drug trafficking date to the Korean War. In 1949, two of Chiang Kai-shek's defeated generals, Li Wen Huan and Tuan Shi Wen, marched their Third and Fifth Route armies, with families and livestock, across the mountains to northern Burma. Once installed, the peasant soldiers began cultivating the crop they knew best, the opium poppy.

When China entered the Korean War, the CIA had a desperate need for intelligence on that nation. The agency turned to the warlord generals, who agreed to slip some soldiers back into China. In return, the agency offered arms. Officially, the arms were intended to equip the warlords for a return to China. In fact, the Chinese wanted them to repel any attack by the Burmese.

Soon intelligence began to flow to Washington from the area, which became known as the Golden Triangle. So, too, did heroin, en route to Southeast Asia and often to the United States.

If the agency never condoned the traffic, it never tried to stop it, either. The CIA did, however, lobby the Eisenhower administration to prevent the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, the DEA's predecessor, from establishing monitoring posts in the area to study the traffic. Today, the Golden Triangle accounts for about half the heroin in circulation in the world.

During the Vietnam War, operations in Laos were largely a CIA responsibility. The agency's surrogate there was a Laotian general, Vang Pao, who commanded Military Region 2 in northern Laos. He enlisted 30,000 Hmong tribesmen in the service of the CIA.

These tribesmen continued to grow, as they had for generations, the opium poppy. Before long, someone - there were unproven allegations that it was a Mafia family from Florida - had established a heroin refining lab in Region Two. The lab's production was soon being ferried out on the planes of the CIA's front airline, Air America. A pair of BNDD agents tried to seize an Air America.

A pair of BNDD agents tried to seize an Air America DC-3 loaded with heroin packed into boxes of Tide soap powder. At the CIA's behest, they were ordered to release the plane and drop the inquiry.

The CIA was made officially aware of Manuel Antonio Noriega's involvement in the drug traffic in 1972, when Mr. Noriega was chief of intelligence of the Panama National Guard, and a promising CIA asset. The BNDD found evidence that Mr. Noriega was taking payoffs for allowing heroin to flow from Spain, through Panama City airport, and on to the United States. That information was part of a lengthy file on Mr. Noriega compiled by Jack Ingersoll, then chief of the BNDD.

Mr. Ingersoll was aware of Mr. Noriega's ties to the CIA, as was President Richard Nixon. When Mr. Nixon ordered Mr. Ingersoll to Panama to warn the country's military dictator, General Omar Torrijos, about the activities of Mr. Noriega and General Torrijos's brother Moises, Mr. Ingersoll hoped that law enforcement was finally "beginning to get the upper hand in its ongoing struggle with the CIA." He was wrong. The Watergate break-in occurred shortly after his visit. Mr. Nixon needed CIA support; his enthusiasm for the drug war evaporated. Mr. Ingersoll's successors at the newly formed DEA - Peter Bensinger, Francis Mullen and John Lawn - all told me they never saw his file, although they had asked to see everything the DEA had on Mr. Noriega. The material has disappeared.

Shortly after General Torrijos's death in a mysterious airplane crash, Mr. Noriega, with CIA assistance, took command of the Panama National Guard.

No one in the Reagan administration was prepared to do anything about the Noriega drug connection. As Norman Bailley, a National Security Council staff member at the time, told me, "The CIA and the Pentagon were resolutely opposed to acting on that knowledge, because they were a hell of a lot more worried about trying to keep Panama on our side with reference to Nicaragua than they were about drugs." Nowhere, however, was the CIA more closely tied to drug traffic than it was in Pakistan during the Afghan War. As its principal conduit for arms and money to the Afghan guerrillas, the agency chose the Pakistan military's Inter-Services Intelligence Bureau. The ISI in turn steered the CIA's support toward Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, an Islamic fundamentalist. Mr. Hekmatyar received almost half of the agency's financial support during the war, and his fighters were valiant and effective. But many of his commanders were also major heroin traffickers.

As it had in Laos, the heroin traffic blossomed in the shadows of a CIA-sustained guerrilla war. Soon the trucks that delivered arms to the guerrillas in Afghanistan were coming back down the Khyber Pass full of heroin.

The conflict and its aftermath have given the world another Golden Triangle: the Golden Crescent, sweeping through Afghanistan, Pakistan and parts of the former Soviet Union. Many of those involved in the drug traffic are men who were once armed, trained and financed by the CIA.

The writer's latest book, "Black Eagles," deals with the CIA, cocaine traffic and Central America in the mid-'80s. He contributed this comment to the International Herald Tribune.
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March 14, 1994, New York Times, Ames Case Poses Task for C.I.A.: A Microscopic Search of Decades, by Tim Weiner,

The Central Intelligence Agency has suspended some operations abroad, told many clandestine operatives to lie low and begun a microscopic review of some of the most difficult intelligence cases of the last decade as a consequence of the case against Aldrich H. Ames, the Central Intelligence Agency officer accused of spying for Moscow, Government officials said last week.

The arrest of Mr. Ames, a former Soviet counterintelligence branch chief, has forced the agency to reopen its files on hundreds of cases covering drug operations, a duplicitous defector and even the death of one of its own officers, they said. Years of Backtracking

In scores of overseas stations and in its own labyrinthine corridors, the C.I.A. is "walking the cat back," spy argot for the difficult business of understanding a disaster and dealing with its aftermath. Government officials said the agency must take numerous steps, with these among them:

* Reviewing the loyalties of scores of paid agents recruited from Russia and Eastern Europe.

* Renewing an inquiry into the killing of one of its officers.

* Contemplating the possibility that Mr. Ames sold information on drug operations from his most recent posting, at the agency's Counternarcotics Center.

* Revisiting the mysterious defection and return of Vitaly S. Yurchenko, a senior Soviet intelligence officer debriefed by Mr. Ames in 1985.

Though "a thorough damage assessment" promised by the agency's director, R. James Woolsey, has barely begun, it is already clear that the damage is extensive. Assessing its depth may take years. The Russian intelligence service, which is said to have paid Mr. Ames hundreds of thousands of dollars a year for his information, is unlikely to be much help.

Mr. Ames was arrested on Feb. 20 is accused of working for Moscow since at least 1985 and in the process betraying at least 10 foreign agents working for the United States, officials said. There may be no connection whatsoever, but the possibility must be explored.

The detective work includes a re-examination of the killing last August of Fred Woodruff, a C.I.A. officer shot to death in the former Soviet republic of Georgia, in what Georgian officials have said was a random robbery attempt. Mr. Ames, Government officials said, traveled to Georgia on assignment in July.

The agency has also begun a painstaking investigation in the agency's Counternarcotics Center, where Mr. Ames last worked. His duties, occasionally conducted in liaison with Russian intelligence officers, involved tracking the flow of heroin and cocaine through Georgia, Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania. He also traveled regularly to Colombia, the world capital of cocaine.

That task, Government officials said, accounts for only a small fraction of the internal investigations. Inside the C.I.A, they said, hundreds of analysts and officers are weighing the importance of every shred of information that Mr. Ames learned and could have sold to Moscow over the last decade, scheduling interviews with every intelligence and drug-enforcement officer he ever met and reviewing the dozens of trips he took abroad since his first overseas posting in 1969.

In time, they must document every aspect of his 32 years at the agency. 'Reconstruct Ames's Career'

"You have to reconstruct Ames's career," said David Holliday, a senior staff member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence from 1985 to 1991. "You have to look at jobs he held, everybody he talked to, everybody he had dealings with. What information did he have access to? What could he have gotten that he didn't have access to? You have to assume wherever he was stationed abroad, wherever his office was at the agency, that he had the potential to put his hands on anything. It's a man-killer.

"The problem is that everybody's covering their hindquarters, and trying to do a true damage assessment ends up being difficult. There are careers at stake."

The careers threatened by the case include those of the agency's top clandestine officers and counterintelligence officials, who may have known of suspicions about Mr. Ames as early as 1989, and the chiefs of the agency's Office of Security, which was responsible for administering background checks that might have exposed Mr. Ames years earlier. They failed to see that Mr. Ames was living far beyond his means and putting in the bank hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, all of it coming, investigators now say, from the largesse of Soviet intelligence.

One intelligence official close to the investigation said the C.I.A.'s greatest worries concern the true loyalties of agents recruited from Russia and Eastern Europe. "The biggest question is: How much confidence do they have in some of the people they're running right now?" he said. "How do they know they're not doubled?" Re-evaluation and Rethinking

A retired C.I.A. officer long responsible for covert operations agreed. "This guy Ames presumably would have known about all but the most sensitive of our agents," he said.

More difficult and potentially devastating work is afoot, Government officials said. The agency must re-evaluate what it knows about intelligence operations against the Soviet Union that failed inexplicably and reconsider controversial intelligence imbroglios from the last decade.

Consider the case of Mr. Yurchenko, the deputy chief of Soviet intelligence operations against the United States, who appeared to have defected to Washington in August 1985 but suddenly returned to Moscow three months later. Mr. Ames's work as a spy for Moscow had begun by then, Government officials said, and he was said to be among the handful of C.I.A. officers who handled Mr. Yurchenko's debriefings.

It is known that Mr. Yurchenko revealed in those debriefings that another C.I.A. officer, Edward Lee Howard, was working for the Soviet Union. Mr. Howard, had been trained for a C.I.A. posting in Moscow, fled the United States before he could be arrested.

Was Mr. Yurchenko sent to befuddle the C.I.A.? Was his tip genuine? Or was it aimed at drawing attention away from Mr. Ames? Did it allow the Soviets to arrest double agents working for the United States without implicating Mr. Ames? Did anything pass between the two men during Mr. Yurchenko's debriefings?

Questions similar to these, dealing with the true nature of defectors and the false footings of disinformation, have in the past tied the C.I.A. in knots and driven experienced intelligence officers to drink and distraction, former C.I.A. officials say.

There are secrets and then there are mysteries, Robert M. Gates, the former Director of Central Intelligence, once noted. Secrets may be unraveled. Mysteries may never be.

"Ultimately," said one intelligence official, "unless Ames will talk, you'll never know."
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April 22, 1994, New York Times, Colombian Drug Trafficker Implicates Haitian Police Chief, by Tim Weiner,

A former member of a Colombian drug cartel testified today at a Senate hearing that Haiti's powerful police commander, Lieut. Col. Joseph Michel Francois, collaborated in shipping tons of cocaine to the United States during the 1980's.

American drug enforcement officials and supporters of Haiti's exiled President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide, have long asserted that members of the military regime that overthrew him in 1991 are involved in the cocaine trade. But the testimony today from Gabriel Taboada, a convicted cocaine smuggler, is believed to be the first sworn public statement by a drug trafficker that a senior member of the current regime has conspired to ship cocaine.

Speaking through an interpreter, Mr. Taboada said he had met with senior members of the Haitian military, including Colonel Francois, in the offices of the Medellin cocaine cartel in the Colombian town of the same name in 1984. He said the Haitian officers helped insure that roughly 70,000 pounds of cocaine were delivered from Colombia through Haiti to the United States in 1987.

"The cartel used Haiti as a bridge so as to later move the drugs toward the United States," Mr. Taboada said. "They took planes out of Colombia and landed in Haiti, protected by the Haitian military. Michel Francois protected the drugs in Haiti and then allowed the drugs to continue to the United States."

Mr. Taboada appeared before a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee that held two days of hearings on the corruption of governments by criminal syndicates.

After the fall of the Duvalier family dictatorship in 1986, Haiti was ruled for five years by a series of military strongmen. Among them was Lieut. Gen. Prosper Avril, who governed from 1988 to 1990 and whom Mr. Taboada also identified today as a participant in the Colombian cocaine trade.

Father Aristide took office in February 1991 after winning the country's first democratic election. He was overthrown seven months later by a group of military officers including Lieut. Gen. Raoul Cedras and Colonel Francois, who are said by human rights groups to rule through terror and intimidation.

Mr. Taboada did not testify on what role the Haitian military is playing in the drug trade today, since he has been in Federal prison since 1989 serving a 12-year sentence for cocaine trafficking. He has testified for the Government in several cases, including the prosecution culminating in the 1992 conviction of the former Panamanian leader, Gen. Manuel Noriega, on drug trafficking charges.

Mr. Taboada also said he had bribed officials of the United States Embassy and other foreign diplomats in Colombia during the 1980's to use their diplomatic status to help him import luxury automobiles for members of the cartel. Senator John F. Kerry, a Massachusetts Democrat, said he had raised the issue with the F.B.I. but had been told that there were "jurisdictional problems" in investigating the charge. A call to a State Department spokeswoman was not returned today.

The hearing was convened by Senator Kerry, who heads the Foreign Relations subcommitee on terrorism, narcotics and international operations. On Wednesday, the panel heard testimony from the Director of Central Intelligence, R. James Woolsey, that international criminal gangs had undermined the political and economic stabilility of Russia, bought the allegiances of Latin American leaders and saturated the United States with cocaine and heroin.

Combining public information with corroborative intelligence gathered recently by the C.I.A., the State Department and other Government agencies, Mr. Woolsey and Senator Kerry described organizations grown rich from the sale of drugs and weapons infiltrating governments, influencing legislation and investing in United States banks and legitimate businesses.
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May 25, 1994, New York Times, Despite Embargo, Haiti's Rich Seem to Get Richer, by Howard W. French,

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, May 24—Large gaps in a worldwide embargo that took effect on Sunday have allowed some of Haiti's wealthiest families, traditionally close allies of the defiant military, to continue a lucrative food trade, diplomats and Haitian business people say.

The situation resulted from a failure by the United States to freeze the assets of leading Haitian business executives and to keep them out of the food trade, and critics of American policy expressed doubts about Washington's willingness to end the political crisis. The freezing of assets is only being applied to Haiti's senior military officers and their allies in Government.

The decision to permit the wealthiest Haitian families to maintain their near-monopolies in basic foods, which are exempt from the embargo, was described by one diplomat as a "judgment call" based on a concern that punishing the economic elite would merely drive it closer to the army.

Critics say, on the other hand, that these families are already close to the army and that pressures must be applied to them for the sanctions to be effective. Most of Haiti's wealthiest traders have opposed the exiled President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and collaborated with the military leaders who overthrew him.

Ex-Friends of the U.S.

Diplomatic and business critics also say there has been a hesitancy to pursue Haitian officers for what Administration officials have asserted is their role in lucrative cocaine trafficking. This, the critics said, has reinforced the view that longstanding allies of the United States who now oppose Father Aristide are being shielded from punishment.

A former Haitian official angered by Washington's policy said powerful Haitians had "inside information and connections in Washington that tell them that Aristide is never coming back," and added: "This failure to act decisively only reinforces that view here."

An American diplomat conceded that the failure to move against the country's richest families had left "a perception out there of us sending mixed messages."

But the United States Ambassador, William L. Swing, defended the policies and said today in an interview, "Whatever the perception may be, I believe that the Clinton Administration is absolutely serious about bringing back President Aristide to finish his mandate."

To accomplish this, Mr. Swing said Washington would "actively pursue every avenue," including possibly freezing the asserts of the powerful Haitian families or "going after the military for things like narcotics."

The Big Three

The worldwide embargo, imposed by United Nations, bans trade with Haiti in all goods except medicines and basic foods.

In an executive order, the Clinton Administration said it would allow trade in these goods by people who are not members of the Haitian military or the army-backed provisional government.

A half dozen or so families -- the best known are the Brandts, the Acras and the Mevses -- have long dominated the economy, in large part through control of the food trade. Their influence has been reinforced by personal ties forged with generations of American diplomats and by their use of well-connected lobbyists in Washington.

Opponents Profit

By allowing this elite to continue to trade in cooking oil, flour, rice and sugar, these families stand to make a lot of money, even as they oppose American policy.

In what is widely considered one of the most flagrant examples, the Mevs family has reportedly been building a huge oil depot here to help the army defy the embargo.

"Right in the middle of the embargo, you have a guy who is described by the Americans as a friend getting a contract like this," said one Haitian businessman. "The joke is that these people are being allowed to profit grotesquely from the sanctions."

The businessman said the depot was being built with the help of commercial financing from the United States, but this could not be confirmed.

Washington's hesitancy in taking firm action against the business elite and the army is a result of a long history of close ties and perceived common interests.

"Countries always look for local allies in their foreign policy and protect them no matter what," said one diplomat. "Unfortunately, in the case of Haiti, the United States' old friends are precisely the people responsible for this crisis."

A History of Coziness

There is a less charitable explanation: that both the Pentagon and the intelligence community in Washington fear a spate of embarrassing revelations made by Haitians in reprisal for a crackdown.

Many Haitians suggest that Justice Department proceedings against army leaders involved in the drug trade have been stalled by fears that such a pursuit would produce a public washing of dirty laundry. Many of Haiti's top military officials received their military and intelligence training in the United States.

"The history of connections of these people in Washington gives them the ability to play with opinion here," said one former Haitian official. "All they have been doing lately is saying that Washington is not in a hurry for Aristide to come back, and even for those who don't want to believe it, each twist of the events seems to confirm their wisdom."

Photo: Despite a tighter embargo on Haiti, fuel reaches Port-au-Prince, where a resident bought a barrel yesterday. (Reuters)
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June 8, 1994, New York Times, U.S. Says Haiti's Military Runs Cocaine, by Howard W. French,

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, June 7—Haiti's military leaders have been working with Colombian traffickers for the past four years to help move hundreds of pounds of cocaine each month from South and Central America to the United States, American diplomats and other officials say.

In their first detailed account of the role of the Haitian armed forces in international narcotics traffic, American officials said that much of Haiti's military leadership, including its commander, Lieut. Gen. Raoul Cedras, either has been actively involved with Colombian drug dealers or has turned a blind eye to their trafficking in cocaine, accepting payments for their cooperation.

For months, United States officials have discounted reports of drug trafficking by senior Haitian officers, and some see the sudden turnabout as an attempt to lay the groundwork for a possible invasion to restore the exiled Haitian President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

The American officials are now saying that the Haitian officers are earning hundreds of thousands of dollars each month for allowing their country to be used as a transshipment center by the main Colombian drug rings in Cali and Medellin.

Haitian Military Informers

The officials who discussed the role of Haitian Army leaders said that their information had been developed in recent months in large part thanks to cooperation from members of the Haitian military itself.

"These sources have been very specific about the dates, the sources and the quantities of narcotics involved, and we have this first hand now," said one American official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. Asked if the evidence against Haiti's military was sufficiently strong to take legal action against them, the official said, "We are pretty close."

The disclosure of the investigation comes three weeks after President Clinton cited Haiti's involvement in the narcotics trade as one of the national security concerns that had convinced him that international military action might be required in Haiti.

In recent days, as speculation has grown about a possible United States-led military action to oust the country's military leaders, members of the Haitian high command have begun consultations here with lawyers who represented Manuel Antonio Noriega, the former Panamanian leader who is serving a 40-year sentence in a Federal penitentiary.

General Noriega, who was accused by the United States of involvement in international narcotics trafficking and money laundering, was captured in an American military intervention in 1989 and brought to the United States for trial.

Generals 'R' Us

Two of General Noriega's lawyers, Frank Rubino and John May, acknowledged today that they had recently been in Haiti for talks with the military. Refusing to discuss further any details of their involvement here, Mr. May, who was contacted by telephone in Miami, said, "Generals are our business."

Haitian military officials have denied any involvement in the narcotics traffic. Following a recent cocaine seizure, Col. Antoine Atouriste, the officer in charge of Haiti's antidrug force, said that reports about the drug-running role of the Haitian military were part of an international campaign to destroy it.

Father Aristide has long asserted that his country's army had been kept in power by narcotics profits.

Congressmen Skeptical

Members of Congress who are opposed to the use of American force to reinstate Father Aristide say that they are skeptical of the case being put together against Haiti's military leaders and say they suspect political motives lie behind the charges.

"There is less true concern over the narcotics problem than there is to lay a foundation for some kind of military action in Haiti," said Robert Torricelli, Democrat of New Jersey, who heads the House Foreign Relations subcommittee on Western Hemisphere affairs. "There is a problem with narcotics in Haiti, but it is no larger than any number of other places."

Officials who discussed details of the Haitian military's role in cocaine trafficking said that until the recent embargo was placed on the country, cocaine was regularly air-dropped into Haiti or delivered by ships from Panama and Colombia.

The role of the Haitian military, the officials said, was to provide protected landing strips and ports, assuring that the unloading of the cocaine was undisturbed.

"Then it is taken to other locations by waiting vehicles, distributed to other points around the country and held until it can be shipped onwards in loads of 50 to 100 kilograms," an official said.

Because of the international embargo against Haiti, officials said they believed the country had an unusually large stockpile of cocaine on hand, which it was unable to export.

Colombian Arrested in Brazil

BRASILIA, June 7 (Reuters) -- Federal agents arrested the chief of the Cali drug cartel's Brazilian network after a shootout today, the authorities said.

The suspect, Vicente Rivera Ramos, is the son of the Cali cartel leader, Vicente Rivera Gonzalez. The shootout occurred near Guarai, a town 600 miles north of Brasilia where the police captured 8.36 tons of cocaine on Sunday. No one was hurt in the shootout.
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July 15, 1994, New York Times, page A1, U.S. Making Moves for Haiti Action, by Eric Schmitt,

Correction Appended

WASHINGTON, July 14— While insisting again that a United States invasion of Haiti is not imminent, the Clinton Administration continued today to lay the groundwork for such an action.

Elite Army paratroopers who would probably lead an invasion of Haiti stepped up night training exercises at Fort Bragg, N.C. The Administration announced that 15 countries had signaled a willingness to join a multinational force that would maintain order and retrain Haiti's security forces after the current military government leaves.

The exiled Haitian President, the Rev. Jean-Bertrand Aristide, also issued a statement today calling for "swift and definitive" action by the international community to oust Haiti's leaders.

In making known recent military exercises but insisting no invasion is imminent, the Administration seemed to be pressing the Haitian military leaders to leave and also trying to silence critics in Congress who say that the White House is moving precipitately to use force.

A day after the Administration's senior foreign policy advisers briefed Congressional leaders on Haiti policy, Senator Sam Nunn, the Georgia Democrat who is an influential voice on military matters, warned the White House to consider any invasion plans "very carefully," and said Haiti is not a "vital" American interest.

At the same time, the Senate today rejected, by a vote of 57 to 42, a proposal by the Senate Republican leader, Bob Dole, to head off military action by creating a bipartisan commission to study the Haitian crisis, which opponents said would tie President Clinton's hands for months.

The Administration's actions were seen by many in Washington as a final effort to persuade Haiti's military leaders to leave voluntarily so the United States would not have to send troops, a step President Clinton has said he wants to avoid but will not rule out.

The White House continued to insist that it would still rely on strict economic sanctions to drive out Haiti's military leaders. But even as it maintained that position, some 2,000 paratroopers from the elite 82d Airborne Division, which would be in the vanguard of an American military action, held one of the largest rehearsals of an air assault that the unit has had in two years, Army officials said.

The paratroopers are practicing jumping from C-141 and C-130 transport planes, and securing landing zones for troops and equipment that would be flown in later -- the same task the troops would undertake in an invasion of Haiti.

Military officials in Washington and at Fort Bragg, where the 82d Airborne is based, described the two-night exercise as routine training that had been scheduled for two months.

"Honest to goodness, this isn't related to Haiti or any specific scenario," said Maj. Jim Hinnant, a spokesman for the 82d Airborne.

But one Pentagon-based general said that field commanders are now using long-scheduled exercises "to focus on things we need to get down if we invade Haiti."

Marines Stage Evacuation

In addition, more than 4,000 marines staged a mock evacuation for the second day on Great Inagua Island in the Bahamas, about 80 miles northwest of Haiti. They are part of a force of some 2,860 marines posted on Navy ships near Haiti.

"We don't want to comment on the direct purpose of any training that would be going on," the Pentagon spokeswoman, Kathleen deLaski, said. "Some of the things you see going on are related to training that could be used to execute a military option."

Tensions in Haiti and in Washington have risen following the departure from Haiti on Wednesday of 89 international human rights observers who were declared unwelcome by Haiti's military rulers and given 48 hours to leave the country.

In light of these tensions and reports of the military preparations, Father Aristide's statement, while similar to others he has made in the past, seemed to add to expectations of an invasion. The latest comments seemed to contradict those made in an interview with National Public Radio in June, when he had said, "Never, never, never would I agree to be restored to power by an invasion."

15 Nations to Help

The White House said that as many as 15 nations have signaled that they would participate in a multinational force to maintain security in Haiti after the military leaders leave. But the United Nations must still negotiate with those countries to work out specific details of their involvement.

The chief United States delegate to the United Nations, Madeleine K. Albright, said at a luncheon speech here that countries indicating a willingness to join a post-restoration force include Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Surinam, Belize, El Salvador and Honduras. Ms. Albright said the countries have tentatively committed 2,000 to 4,000 police and trainers.

"They would be there to help with the training of the military and police force, to watch the situation on the ground and to be on hand to make sure that there isn't some upsurge in violence," said the White House spokeswoman, Dee Dee Myers.

Administration officials also said today that Surinam has agreed to join Dominica, Grenada and Antigua in offering safe haven to Haitians fleeing their homeland. Surinam said it could accommodate between 2,000 and 2,500 Haitians.

Broadcasts to Haiti

The State Department announced today that broadcasts, called Radio Democracy, will begin on Friday and will be scheduled for two hours a day -- from 6:30 P.M. to 7:30 P.M., then again from 8 P.M. to 9 P.M. -- on AM 1035 and FM 91.9.

Broadcasts will include messages of reconciliation from Father Aristide and other Haitians, but they will not include appeals for Haitians to halt their attempts to flee in rickety boats, a condition Father Aristide refused to accept.

Administration officials cited what they called encouraging signs that the number of Haitians trying to flee by boat may be dropping.

The State Department spokesman, Michael McCurry, said that about 2,300, or 30 percent, of the 7,600 Haitians being processed at Guantanamo Bay have chosen to return home. The remainder will be sent to third countries until the Haitian military government is replaced.

Warnings From Nunn

Administration officials said the apparent reduction in the number of Haitians fleeing by boat has given the White House some "breathing space" to decide its next steps. But Congressional officials cautioned Mr. Clinton and his advisers not to act rashly.

"When we're thinking of Haiti, we also have to think of other spots in the world where we have potential problems," Senator Nunn said on NBC's "Today" Show. "Korea is a place where we have a vital interest, and that has to be our first top priority. Bosnia is also important and Haiti is important, but neither Bosnia nor Haiti are vital."

Senator Nunn said that calculation would change quickly if Americans come under attack in Haiti. "Right now, they're not under threat," Mr. Nunn said. "If they come under threat, we have to be prepared to move very rapidly."

Ms. Myers said there were no known threats against the more than 4,000 Americans in Haiti, but she added, "The situation is deteriorating, and I think that makes things more difficult for everyone there."

Chart: "TALLY: Forces Near Haiti" shows numbers of U.S. military ships, helicopters and troops in the vicinity of Haiti. (Source: Reuters) (pg. A6)

Correction: July 16, 1994, Saturday An article yesterday about American military planning for a possible invasion of Haiti misstated the number of marines staging a mock evacuation on an island in the Bahamas. It was more than 400, not more than 4,000.
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July 26, 1994, New York Times, Letter, Haiti Is Washington's Dirty Little Secret, by Kenneth B. Wright,

To the Editor:

Re "U.S. Making Moves for Haiti Action" (front page, July 15): When Senator Sam Nunn, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, warned against the use of military force to restore democracy in Haiti, he joined a long list of prominent apologists for Haiti's military rulers.

A few weeks ago, you quoted Representative Robert G. Torricelli, chairman of the House Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere Affairs, as downplaying the very significant role of Haiti's military in the illegal drug trade ("U.S. Says Haiti's Military Runs Cocaine," news article, June 8).

It should now be apparent that our foreign policy in Haiti is driven by fears that the seamier side of United States intelligence will be exposed to the American public. As you reported May 25 in "Despite Embargo, Haiti's Rich Seem to Get Richer," "both the Pentagon and the intelligence community in Washington fear a spate of embarrassing revelations made by Haitians in reprisal for a crackdown" against Haiti's military regime.

The same article reported speculation that Justice Department drug charges against Haitian army leaders "have been stalled by fears that such a pursuit would produce a public washing of dirty laundry" that could implicate the same United States military and intelligence agencies that trained Haiti's top military officials.

Last November, you reported that the Central Intelligence Agency had created an intelligence organization in Haiti that has "evolved into an instrument of political terror" for Haitian officers "engaged in drug trafficking" ("C.I.A. Formed Haitian Unit Later Tied to Narcotics Trade," news article, Nov. 14, 1993).

Since then, the C.I.A. has spent more time publicizing its distorted "psychological profile" of Haiti's first democratically elected President, the exiled Jean-Bertrand Aristide, than in disclosing the corrupt activities of its own ruthless military allies in Haiti ("Key Haiti Leaders Said to Have Been in the C.I.A.'s Pay," news article, Nov. 1, 1993).

The fear that United States complicity in Haiti's political corruption and terror could become more widely recognized and exposed may explain why so many of our political leaders continue to oppose the use of any multinational force to topple Haiti's dictators.

KENNETH B. WRIGHT

New York, July 15, 1994
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