Ah yes, it sure makes you pine for the good ol' days when Saint Reagan was in the WH doesn't it?
Reagan Admits Iran Arms Deal
White House Secretly Wooed Tehran For 1 1/2 Years U.s. Was Aiming At Moderates
November 14, 1986|By George de Lama and James O`Shea, Chicago Tribune.
WASHINGTON — The White House on Thursday disclosed the outlines of an extraordinary 18-month campaign to curry favor with Iran, unveiling details of secret arms shipments and diplomatic initiatives that went beyond those described in President Reagan`s nationally televised address.
In a lengthy briefing for a small group of reporters, senior administration officials defended Reagan`s signing of a formal White House directive last January that allowed the previously illegal transfers of American military equipment to Iran as a ``justified deviation`` of official U.S. policy.
In addition to U.S. arms shipments, a senior official involved in the operation confirmed that a ``third country`` acting in ``the interests`` of the United States transferred military goods to Tehran last year with the knowledge of the White House.
That delivery apparently was a violation of a U.S. legal ban against such shipments. The official said the shipment helped lead to the release in September, 1985, of American hostage Rev. Benjamin Weir, who was held in Beirut by pro-Iranian Moslem terrorists.
The shipment came before Reagan signed his secret January directive that ostensibly made delivery of U.S. military equipment to Iran legal, the official conceded. He would not name the third country, but other well-placed sources confirmed that the shipment was flown to Iran from Israel.