Oliver North-Drug Trafficking Hero

...on the Lecture Circuit

Should we forgive and forget, or hold him accountable for his extensive past drug trafficking ties?

by Celerino Castillo 3rd | posted at www.DrugWar.com

May 22, 2003

Author Celerino Castillo back in the day, working on anti-drug operations in Central America

       Hummers, SUVs, Mercedes, and Cadillac were arriving for Oliver North and The Salvation Army’s fundraiser. I could have sworn that it was a Republican fundraiser. As the vehicles went by, some had the audacity of “shooting the bird” at us while we were exercising our First Amendment rights. It was a good thing that the camera was clicking. “Good old boys” at their best.

According to one member of the Salvation Army’s advisory board, it had been a done deal before North’s name was brought to the table for the approval. That same member further alleged that the real reason that North had been approved for the lecture was because North had allegedly once saved Captain Tom Gilliam's father’s life. Therefore, it turned out to be a pretty good payday for North.

Now, we do not dispute the fact that the Salvation Army does an excellent job in what they are suppose to do. Captain Tom Gilliam, a Salvation Army Captain, was quoted by The Monitor that, “I believe that the actions that the people (protesters) are upset about took place 20 years ago…” What the Captain failed to mention was that in 1991, the Drug Enforcement Administration in Washington D.C opened a General File (GFGD-91-9139) on Oliver North for selling weapons in the Philippines with known drug traffickers.

It will surprise many to know that the Nobel Prize winning President of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias, because of an in-depth investigation by the Costa Rican Congressional Commission on Narcotics, found “virtually all [U.S. supported] contra factions involved in drug trafficking.” The Costa Rican government banned Oliver North and other America diplomats, by Executive Order, from ever entering Costa Rica for their roles in utilizing Costa Rican territory for cocaine trafficking. Former President Bush once stated, “All those who look the other way are as guilty as the drug dealers,”

The Captain went on to state that, “We believe in a God who forgives and forgets…” Once again, the Captain lost focus on our concerns. And, that it is his poor judgment in selecting an individual who was tainted by allegations of drug trafficking, terrorism, and felony convictions. The Captain’s selection was made for personal reasons.

Several years ago, the extreme right arm of the Christian Coalition selected to support Oliver North for U.S. Senate. Their support backfired and North became one of two Republicans who lost the elections that year. During North’s campaign, I traveled to Virginia, went out to the “grassroots” communities and educated them on who Oliver North really was. I went as far as challenging North for a debate. Of course, he refused. My first question would had been: Why did you campaign to obtain the release of Honduran army general Jose Bueso-Rosa from a federal prison, after his arrest for smuggling 763 pounds of cocaine and for murder? Bueso-Rosa’s partner in the venture was international arms dealer Felix Latchinian, who in turn was an ex-business partner of CIA agent (Cubano) Felix Rodriguez. During the 70s and 80s, Felix Rodriguez was tied to several terrorist organizations who terrorize both the United States and Latin America. Felix Rodriguez, also known as Max Gomez, was in charge of the Contra’s supply network in El Salvador, which was also involved in drug trafficking. If this sounds complicated just remember that all this drug trafficking was paid for with your taxpayer dollars.

The Captain’s poor judgment, that the means justifies the end, will hurt the Republican Party. On November 1, 2001, after several months of delays, George W. Bush changed an Executive Order that prevented the release of papers from the Reagan presidency, even though the release is mandated by The Presidential Records Act of 1978. Several years ago I was able to legally obtain Top Secret government documents, declassified, from the National Archives. Soon after the release, the government reclassified them citing National Security. These are some of the documents that President Bush wants kept secret. Some of these documents affirm the plans to mine the harbors of Nicaragua. Because of the Captain’s decision to continue in support of individuals like Oliver North, I have no choice but to release these documents to Univision and make the first offer to an American news media, Mr. North’s employer, Fox News.

We Americans are not hated by other Third World countries because we practice democracy, value freedom or uphold human rights. We are hated because our government denies these things to people in Third World countries whose resources are coveted by our multinational corporations. That hatred we have sown has come back to haunt us in the form of terrorism. War crimes also come easily because the U.S. considers itself the vehicle of a higher morality and truth and can operate in violation of law without cost.

This world has become a very dangerous place to live, not just because of the evil people that control it, but also because of the individuals who do absolutely nothing to make it a better place to live. Because of the atrocities that my government committed in Central America, I’ve renounced my Bronze Star back to my government at the Vietnam Wall. I am also now capable of feeling deeply in my blood when an injustice is being committed. That is why I’ve risked the remainder of my life to demonstrate what I believe to be real. And that is why an armed struggle (pen in hand) is in order for those who are struggling to keep their freedom for telling the truth.

In conclusion, it is interesting to see whom the Captain will invite for next year fundraiser: Manuel Noriega? Why not? As the Captain states, “God forgives and forgets.” Furthermore, in Noriega’s case, it occurred 20 years ago. According to the Top Secret documents, Lt. Col. Oliver North had a very close relationship with Noriega.

Celerino “Cele” Castillo, 3rd
2709 North 28 ½ Street
McAllen, TX 78501

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