Oliver North

The take-charge junior staff aide "made most of the significant operational decisions" on the Iran initiative and ran an extensive supply network for the contras, yet he and his associates "functioned largely outside the orbit of the U.S. Government. Their activities were not subjected to critical reviews of any kind." The result was "unprofessional" and "unsatisfactory"; in negotiating with Iran, North failed to achieve even his own questionable goals. "The U.S. hand was repeatedly tipped and unskillfully played," said the commission. "Repeatedly, Lieut. Colonel North permitted arms to be delivered without the release of a single captive."

In the aftermath of...

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