The Fabulous Gary Webb

Outcast, Controversy, Visionary

Who was this man?

This is Gary Webb. He was a muckraking journalist who wrote for the San Jose Mercury News, a publication centered in San Jose, California.

Who was the victim?

Anyone hurt by the spread of Crack Cocaine in California was a victim.

What information was uncovered?

Webb spent over a year of intense investigative reporting to uncover connections between a gang of drug dealers from Nicaragua and a band of counterrevolutionaries backed by the CIA that lead to the rise of crack cocaine in California. He collected quotes from gang members such as Oscar Damillo Brandon Reyes referencing specific names of people involved in the CIA and giving first hand accounts of what had happened. He formulated everything he found into a series titled "Dark Alliance."
Gary Webb on C.I.A. Trafficking of Cocaine

What Happened to Him?

Webbs' work was laughed out by many esteemed members in his field, thus hindering his credibility. Many papers ignored his contribution or buried it far from the front page. His extensive research and shocking article did not get the attention they deserved.


After rejection from all he respected in his community, Webb committed suicide at age 49. His memory lives on in the hearts of modern day muckrakers.

What Happened to the Organization?

The CIA, being a substantial government organization, did not suffer any losses despite the compelling evidence provided by Wells about the corruption of one of their supported organizations.

What changes came about?

Despite there being no immediate action affecting the CIA, the organization conducted its own research and, upon realizing the truth behind Webb's claims and discovering attempts to cover up the scandal, strengthened their procedure for internal investigation.

Megan's personal reaction:

The story of Gary Wells is a tragic tale of someone devoting their life to uncovering the truth but, because of the controversial nature, was exiled from his journalism community. He was a devoted man and deserves to be remembered for his contribution to his field.

Works Cited

"The Sad Saga of Gary Webb | American Journalism Review." American Journalism Review. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Feb. 2013. <http://www.ajr.org/article.asp?id=3874>.


Webb, Gary. "The Dark Allience - Gary Webb / SJMN Series." mega.nu - Daniel Pouzzner - douzzer@mega.nu. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Feb. 2013. <http://www.mega.nu/ampp/webb.html>.