The American crack epidemic was a surge of crack cocaine use in major cities across the United States between 1984 and the early 1990s.
Beginning with the Iran–Contra affair, some politicians and journalists began arguing that the CIA contributed to the rise of the epidemic. Allegations ranged from the presence of drug ties to the Contra rebels, to possible direct involvement in drug traf****ing by the Contras and even members of the CIA. The exact degree of awareness and involvement on the part of the CIA itself continues to be disputed. However, on April 17, 1986, the Reagan Administration released a three-page report admitting that there were some Contra-cocaine connections in 1984 and 1985, arguing that these connections occurred at a time when the rebels were "particularly hard pressed for financial support" because U.S. aid had been cut off.
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