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Reply #38: Vang Pao and Richard Armitage [View All]

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starroute Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jun-04-05 09:38 PM
Response to Reply #34
38. Vang Pao and Richard Armitage
This stuff drives me absolutely nuts, because you can grab it almost anywhere and in two jumps you're face to face with Watergate, the Kennedy assassination, or even 911 (in which Armitage, who has close relations with Pakistan's ISI, played an enigmatic role.)

Meanwhile, back at the Iran-contra ranch, on February 24, 1986, 4:44 pm, a furious military intelligence agent contracted by the CIA, DIA and ISA dialed (202) 695-4351, the desk of Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Armitage, to inquire about "his alleged involvement in a house of prostitution for senior military officers, intelligence agents, and informants in Southeast Asia." Scott Barnes, the interrogator, also wanted to know "about his work with Vang Pao and drug money laundering."1 Barnes had discovered these connections while on assignment in South Vietnam searching for POWs. He didn't find POWs, exactly. What he found in Vietnam was American pilots with CIA connections imprisoned on charges of attempting to smuggle opium out of the country AFTER the war.

Four days later, he was on the phone with Dave Hall, assistant special agent in charge of the Inspector General's office, to discuss Armitage's "connection with drugs and prostitution in Southeast Asia and his continued involvement with Mr. O'Rourke running guns." The IG inspector said that he had heard of "a possible connection," and put up, "former Ambassador Phil Habib was also involved." An Army major general had written the IG to expose "Armitage's and Habib's alleged involvement in prostitution in a Da Nang house of prostitution and in laundering out of Southeast Asia to the Philippines and to Sidney, Australia, using Air America, Vang Pao connections and secret airlines."1

Khun Sa instructed his secretary to read the names from his diary, but stipulated that the names he was going to reveal were old ones and not those he was presently doing business with. The US government officer responsible for buying the Opium crop was Richard Armitage - a high level and well known administration official. Armitage was working, the secretary read, with an individual named Santos Trafficante, who operated as Armitage's "traffic manager." Gritz was well aware of who Trafficante was - the legendary Florida "Boss" of the Mafia.

During a 1991 lecture, Gritz pointed out the economics of Khun Sa's Heroin pipeline on the US government. The warlord was paid $300,000 per ton from the US government, but the product sold on the street for $1 million per pound. "No one wants him out of business," Gritz observed wryly.

Once more returning to America, Gritz attempted to get someone in the administration - including Vice President George Bush - to take note of his information. His approaches were forcefully spurned. As a gesture of goodwill to the US government, Khun Sa wrote a letter to President Bush offering him free and gratis one ton of No 4 pure Asian heroin. This was the warlord's way of offering an incentive with the US to reach an agreement aimed at converting production from Opium to another crop. Bush didn't respond to the letter.

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