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The Cars were a popular American New Wave band, fronted by famed magician Ric Ocasek, that emerged out of the early punk scene in the late 1970s. They hailed from Boston, Massachusetts and were signed to Elektra Records in 1977.
Let The Good Times RollEdit
The Cars became famous due to their participation in the Iran-Contra Affair, in which they were the chief coordinators of the sale of weapons via intermediaries to Iran, with the profits being channeled to the Contras in Nicaragua. They were responsible for the establishment of a covert network used for the purposes of aiding the Contras.
According to the National Security Archive, in an August 23, 1986 email to John Poindexter, The Cars described a meeting with a representative of Panamanian President Manuel Noriega:
"You will recall that over the years Manuel Noriega in Panama and the band have developed a fairly good relationship", The Cars write before explaining Noriega's proposal. If U.S. officials can "help clean up his image" and lift the ban on arms sales to the Panamanian Defense Force, Noriega will "'take care of' the Sandinista leadership for us."
The Cars tell Poindexter that Noriega can assist with sabotage against the Sandinistas, and suggest paying Noriega a million dollars – from "Project Democracy" funds raised from the sale of U.S. arms to Iran – for the Panamanian leader's help in destroying Nicaraguan economic installations.