The Mena Scandal


The Mena Airport Scandal

From a cronological summary and archive of the Washington Weekly.

Keywords: Mena Iran-Contra; Mena Terry Reed; Mena ADFA; Mena Arkansas; Mena Drugs; Mena Trial; Mena Buddy Young; Oliver North, George Bush, Bill Clinton, L.D. Brown, Russell Welch

Note: this page contains links to Washington Weekly stories about the Mena scandal. A subscription is required to read these stories. All of the links are non-functional for this reason.

The Beginning

When a C-123K military cargo plane crashed in Nicaragua on October 5, 1986 with weapons and CIA employees on board, it unraveled what became known as the Iran-Contra scandal. The weapons were supplied by the CIA and destined for the Nicaraguan Contras in possible violation of the Congressional Boland amendments. Special prosecutor Lawrence Walsh spent six years determining who in the Reagan administration was involved in the operation. Among the prime operatives were George Bush, Oliver North, Dewey Clarridge, John Pointdexter and Caspar Weinberger.

What few people considered at the the time, however, was that the training of pilots and loading of weapons took place at the little town of Mena in Arkansas. Nobody asked about the involvement of the governor of Arkansas. Today, that governor is President of the United States, and people have started asking what involvement, if any, Bill Clinton had in the Iran Contra operation.

July 25 1994 Arkansas Crime Inc. (Editorial)
Sep 07 1994 Clinton Linked to Iran-Contra (Editorial)
Sep 12 1994 Clinton Used Police Against Opponents (Editorial)
Oct 10 1994 Clinton denies knowledge of Iran-Contra operation in Arkansas (Editorial)
Oct 10 1994 Excerpt from Clinton Press Conference Oct. 7
Oct 17 1994 Clinton's Link to Iran-Contra Documented (Editorial)


Money Laundering and Drug Trafficking

People have come forward and alleged that Clinton profited from the operation at Mena by laundering money through the newly created Arkansas Development Finance Authority.

Even worse, a large number of people have testified under oath that the airplanes returning from Central America were loaded with cocaine, which was then dropped over Arkansas for distribution to larger U.S. cities.

Feb 06 1995 Detailed Documentation Backs Claims of Mena Affair
Jun 26 1995 KGB Spy Talks about Mena
State Trooper puts Clinton in the Loop
Arkansas National Guardsmen put Clinton in the Loop
Clinton Responds to L.D. Brown's Account
Sep 11 1995 How to Swear to A Statement Against the CIA in Costa Rica
Sworn Statement of William Henry LaRoche, Jr, alleging CIA complicity in Drug Smuggling.
Image of Original Document
Oct 2 1995 Interview with L.D. Brown
Former Arkansas State Trooper L.D. Brown elaborates, for the first time in his own words, on his flights to Central America in the service of the CIA, on Clinton's link to the CIA, and on the treatment he has received from the American press.
Apr 15 1996 The Mena Drug Pipeline
May 6 1996 Noriega Assails George Bush On Contra Drug Dealing
May 27 1996 The Barry Seal - Bill Clinton Connection II


The Cover-Up

How could this go on for years without detection? Why wasn't this investigated by Walsh, by the Arkansas State Police, by the Arkansas Attorney General, by Congress or by the news media? There is mounting evidence of one of the largest cover-ups in U.S. history: politicians from both sides on the aisle have benefited from drug corruption.

Oct 23 1994 The Mena Coverup (Editorial)
Oct 31 1994 Anatomy of a Press Conspiracy (Editorial)
Dec 12 1994 Another Washington Weekly Prediction Comes True (Editorial)
The Mena Story
Jan 09 1995 Investigation of the Mena Affair (Editorial)
Feb 06 1995 Washington Post Accused of Grand Scale Political Cover-Up (Editorial)
Feb 20 1995 Interview with Arkansas Judge Jim Johnson
Former Arkansas Supreme Court Justice Jim Johnson reveals government efforts to block investigations of the Mena affair and investigations of Clinton's fraudulent Whitewater loans, and explains how business interests, news media, politicians, and courts in Arkansas manage to block the truth from coming out.
May 15 1995 Interview with Terry Reed
Reed describes how CNN concocted an interview with him.
Jun 05 1995 The Story that was Suppressed by the Washington Post
Nov 13 1996 Caspar Weinberger Accused of Participation in Drug Operation
Dec 4 1995 U.S. Government Pressured Costa Rica to Keep Mena Secret
Apr 1 1996 Who Is Richard Ben-Veniste?
Apr 8 1996 The Arkansas Cover-up
An outline of a criminal conspiracy
Jul 15 1996 Widespread Systemic Corruption In Washington
Democrat On Hearing Panel Takes Mob Money
Brother of Mike Espy Indicted For Money Laundering
Dole Vice Chairman Pleads Guilty To Money Laundering
State Department Accuses Colombian President Of Taking Drug Mo ney


Terry Reed's Lawsuit

Terry Reed was a pilot and a subcontractor working for the CIA Iran-Contra operation. When he discovered that drugs were shipped to the U.S., he left the operation in disgust. He soon found himself and his family the target of a retaliation lawsuit claiming insurance fraud. The Reed family was cleared of the allegations in federal court in Wichita, Kansas. Shortly thereafter, the Reed family filed a civil suit against those who had brought the wrongful suit against them. Two employees of Bill Clinton, Buddy Young and Tommy Baker were charged with fabrication of evidence and other civil rights violations:

Jan 16 1995 The Federal Court Case Against Clinton's Former Security Chief (Editorial)
Feb 27 1995 The Most Criminal and Corrupt Administration in History (Editorial)
A list of alleged crimes and ethics violations.
Sep 18 1995 Buddy Young Linked to Contra Operation
Clinton's former security chief, now-defendant in Reed's Mena Trial, appears to have been more involved than previously known.


Harrassment, Intimidation, and Suppression of Evidence

After years of stalling, the lawsuit by the Reed family finally started rolling early in 1995. Depositions were taken from a number of people and they all told the same story under oath. They also revealed that U.S. senators tried to block investigations into money laundering at Mena. Unfortunately, these witnesses suffered harrassment and intimidation because of their explosive testimony. In early 1996, the judge in the case ruled to supress all evidence relating to Mena, CIA, and the Clintons from the trial. Reed then gave up and dropped the trial.

Much material in the Mena case has come from the investigations of one honest cop in Mena, Russell Welch. The harassment and intimidation he has suffered simply for doing his job is beyond description.

Apr 10 1995 Update on The Expanding Probe of The Mena Scandal
Allegations of U.S. Senators Blocking the Mena Investigation
Witness in Mena Trial Dead
Trooper Says Clinton Was Told About Mena
Mena Investigator Transferred
Apr 24 1995 Witnesses in Mena Suit Suffer Harassment and Intimidation
May 15 1995 Interview with Terry Reed
Reed's Mena lawsuit is moving closer and closer to Bill Clinton - at the peril of those called to testify. Reed also describes how CNN concocted an interview with him.
Aug 28 1995 Mena Drug Scandal Unravels
Mounting Evidence of Involvement by George Bush
Terry Reed's Mena Trial Delayed
Oct 2 1995 Terry Reed is Getting Ready for Trial
Dec 4 1995 Interview with Julius "Doc" Delaughter
Clinton said to L.D. Brown about the drug smuggling at Mena airport "That's Lasater's deal." As the State Trooper who put Dan Lasater behind bars, Doc Delaughter here tells the story of his investigation, as well as his investigation of Tyson Inc. His findings led to harassment of a magnitude that finally forced him to resign. Doc Delaughter appears on the British Mena documentary banned from distribution in the U.S.
Dec 11 1996 Countdown to Mena Trial
Arkansas Attorney General Subpoenaed in Mena Case
Defense Moves to Suppress Mena Evidence
Barry Seal's "Fat Lady" Found in Florida!
Mar 25 1996 Government Attempts to Derail Mena Trial
Mar 25 1996 Text Of Order In Mena Trial >Mar 25 1996 New Information Released In Mena Case
Mar 25 1996 Mena: The Investigation of Barry Seal
Interview with Russell Welch
Apr 1 1996 The Mena Anthrax Poisoning Case
L.D. Brown Ordered To Assasinate Terry Reed
Reed Drops Second Lawsuit
CIA Investigation Of Mena
Aug 12 1996 White House Asked About Mena
White House Spokesman Questions CIA statement
Aug 26 1996 Behind the Mena Lawsuits


The Mena Murders

The murder of two teenage boys, Don Henry and Kevin Ives, thanks to the persistence of their parents and the courage of a few honest Arkansas policemen, was traced back to drug smuggling at Mena but covered up at the highest levels of the Arkansas government.

Nov 6 1995 British TV Exposes String of Murders near Mena, Arkansas
Jul 15 1996 Arkansas Political Machine Continues Murder Cover-Up
Desperate move to keep the lid on the Henry-Ives murders


Starr Asks Questions About Mena

Even Whitewater prosecutor Kenneth Starr followed the thread from Whitewater to Mena, and started asking questions about Clinton's involvement in the Mena operation. He finally announced, however, that Mena was outside his brief.

Apr 10 1995 Update on The Expanding Probe of The Mena Scandal
Starr Asking Questions About Clinton's Links to Mena
Apr 17 1995 Whitewater Update
Starr investigating scam loans at ADFA
Dec 11 1995 Starr Says He Won't Touch Mena
Feb 19 1996 ADFA Records Subpoenaed


Congress Investigates Mena

In the fall of 1995 several committees in the House of Representatives began considering holding hearings on Mena and started interviewing witnesses and asking if they would be willing to testify in public hearings. One year later, any hearings were yet to be announced.

Aug 14 1995 Mena Drug Scandal Unravels
House Judiciary Committee May hold Hearings
Mar 18 1996 Congressional Investigators Swarming Around Mena
May 6 1996 Dan Lasater Testifies Before Whitewater Committee


Deja Vu?

During 1996, several developments in Bosnia showed an eerie resemblance to events in Nicaragua a decade before.

Apr 8 1996 Iran-Bosnia: Deja-Vu?
Apr 8 1996 State Department Briefing on Iran-Bosnia
An analysis of U.S. covert operations in Bosnia
Aug 12 1996 Drug Trafficking and Gun Running In Bosnia
Is The U.S. Government Involved?


The Los Angeles Connection

In the fall of 1996, events took an amazing turn. The San Jose Mercury News reported on a drug trial in Los Angeles where informants testified that they had sold drugs to LA street gangs in order to finance the CIA-backed Contra war in Nicaragua in the 1980s. The story grabbed the headlines and incited the Black community. It was soon realized that what was seen in Los Angeles was just another tentacle of what had already been uncovered in Mena, Arkansas. Now the CIA, the Justice Department, Congress and the White House were all asked for explanations. Mushrooming beyond control, the Mena scandal had finally reached the headlines of the mainstream media a decade after the events took place.

Aug 19 1996 Contras Sold Cocaine to L.A. Street Dealers
Aug 26 1996 L.A. City Council Calls For Investigation Of Contra Drug Sales
Aug 26 1996 Letter From CIA Director Deutch Regarding Rumors of His Resignation
A String Of Murders Surround Jungle Discovery
Sep 23 1996 Barry Seal Involved In Transporting Cocaine From Bolivia To Los Angeles
Sep 16 1996 Letter From Senator Barbara Boxer to CIA Director John Deutch
Sep 16 1996 Reply from DCI John Deutch
Sep 16 1996 Letter From Maxine Waters To Attorney General Janet Reno
Sep 16 1996 Letter From Senator Diane Feinstein to Attorney General Janet Reno
Maxine Waters' Request For Hearings To Chairman Henry Hyde
Sep 23 1996 Select Committee Needed To Investigate CIA/Crack Connections
Sep 23 1996 Why We Have Cocaine In South Central Los Angeles
Sep 23 1996 Cloud of Shame Hangs Over The CIA


Last updated September 24, 1996.
For more recent stories, see the Washington Weekly.





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