General Noriega on allegations of being a CIA asset

EIR: During a recent television program, they again insisted you supposedly had all these relations with the U.S. intelli­gence community, in particular with former CIA director William Casey, and with others also, such as Bush. Why do they continue to insist on this?

Noriega: During that TV interview, my full answer was not presented for technical reasons. The subject continues to come up because that was the charge they made against me to distort my image as a leader and a nationalist. So, they threw in this stuff on subordinations, the payroll of the Cen­tral Intelligence Agency, etc.

It is true, that on the specific orders of the commander­ in-chief of what was then the National Guard, Omar Torrijos, I was the liaison with [the CIA], as there are persons in charge of liaison in every single armed institution. In Panama, Tor­rijos chose me. Why? Because in 1969, he accused the Cen­tral Intelligence Agency of attempting a coup against him, on Dec. 16, when they had tried to overthrow him, while he was in Mexico. I guaranteed his return; I ensured his return. At that time my military rank was that of major. I didn’t know about the CIA or any of that stuff.

General Torrijos threw them out of Panama, and then he allowed them to return on condition that they could have only one channel of communication, that they could not have any channel of communication with any officer except Manuel Antonio Noriega. I was not a covert agent, nor hidden, or any such thing. The entire military community knew that I was the liaison and not just Panama’s military community, but internationally as well.

Thus, my relations with them were that of a Panamanian professional, with their institutions. But they- since the CIA is not sacred or the fourth gospel found in the scrolls of Jerusalem- distort this. It filled the need to increase the defamation of the “monster “ that they wanted to create, which was Manuel Antonio Noriega. So they presented it as some­ thing strange, mysterious, which controlled the entire Latin American military community.

That is why they keep insisting on this. But if that were true, Bush would have put my name on the last pardon that he issued in December; he would have listed the name of Manuel Antonio Noriega. The proof is that they didn’t put my name on the pardon. The conclusion? Two plus two equals four: I am not one of their CIA outlaws.

General Manuel Noriega —