The Killing Game

Gary Webb had an inborn journalistic tendency to track down corruption and expose it. For over thirty-four years, he wrote stories about corruption from county, state, and federal levels. He had an almost magnetic effect to these kinds of stories, and it was almost as if the stories found him. It was his gift, and, ultimately, it was his downfall.
He was best known for his story Dark Alliance, written for the San Jose Mercury News in 1996. In it Webb linked the CIA to the crack-cocaine epidemic in Los Angeles during the Iran Contra scandal. His only published book, Dark Alliance is still a classic of contemporary journalism. But his life consisted of much more than this one story, and The Killing Game is a collection of his best investigative stories from his beginning at the Kentucky Post to his end at the Sacramento News & Review. It includes Webb’s series at the Kentucky Post on organized crime in the coal industry, at the Cleveland Plain Dealer on Ohio State’s negligent medical board, and on the US military’s funding of first-person shooter video games. The Killing Game is a dedication to his life’s work outside of Dark Alliance, and it’s an exhibition of investigative journalism in its truest form.

About the Author

GARY WEBB was an investigative reporter who focused on government and private sector corruption and who won more than thirty journalism awards. He was one of six reporters at the San Jose Mercury News to win a 1990 Pulitzer Prize for General News Reporting for a series of stories on the collapse of the Cypress Street Viaduct during northern California’s 1989 earthquake. In 1996, Webb wrote a shocking series of articles for the San Jose Mercury News exposing the CIA’s link to Nicaraguan cocaine smuggled into the US by the Contras, which had fueled the widespread crack epidemic that swept through urban areas. Webb’s bold, controversial reporting was the target of a famously vicious media backlash that ended his career as a mainstream journalist. When Webb persisted with his research and compiled his findings in the book Dark Alliance, some of the same publications that had vilified Webb for his series retracted their criticism and praised him for having the courage to tell the truth about one of the worst official abuses in our nation’s history. Others, including his own former newspaper and the New York Times, continued to treat him like an outlaw for the brilliant and courageous work he’d done. Webb received the 1997 Media Hero Award from the Institute for Alternative Journalism and in 1996 was named Journalist of the Year by the Bay Area Society of Professional Journalists. Webb’s death on December 10, 2004, at the age of 49, was determined to be a suicide…
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Seven Stories Press (January 4, 2011)


Amazon Reviews

This is probably the best story about a real journalist who attempted to tell the truth 

If this were a movie, it would be a thriller no one would believe and end unhappily. This is probably the best story about a real journalist who attempted to tell the truth about White House cover-ups, covert operations by our law enforcement agencies, aiding and abetting these crimes by MSM and the reporters own employer. In the end even though he took his own life it was clear after his reputation was ruined, he was broke, unable to work, the powers that be got their pound of flesh and silenced him. The real story is how the need to control the press took root and how propaganda became the tool to use to silence others that might follow in his footsteps. It has become clear since his death it worked as those who would report the truth have become ostracized, sidelined, removed from the networks, etc. This is a great story and he should have been given the highest medal of honor a citizen can receive. This really is a great story and one everyone who believes in freedom and the truth should read. It should be required reading in all public school, colleges and all universities.

Must Read

Gary Webb died on December 10, 2004 the same day that he resigned from the San Jose Mercury News in 1997. “This was the same day that my son, William Patrick ‘Pat’ Carr died…December 10, 2000,” wrote a Texas father. “Pat Carr” is also the name of the son of Marion Carr Knox who typed the 1972 Air National Guard memos of George W. Bush when he as at Ellington Field, Houston and who defended his mother’s testimony after her 2004 appearance on Dan Rather and Mary Mapes’ CBS 60 Minutes program. This book of Gary’s previously unpublished material edited by Gary’s son, Eric Webb, shows that Gary was on the trail of the Robert Vesco connection to the U.S. CIA drug game. Vesco’s connections were to the Carlos Lehder cartel which was flying drugs into the Bahamas under the protection of their Prime Minister, Lynden Prindling. Robert Tilton Custer of Georgia and Darby Cay in the Bahamas were, not unlike Eugene Hasenfus in Nicaragua, flying planes into Darby Cay, an airport/island owned by a Colombo crime family member. Like so many others, Robert Tilton Custer died in his private Piper Cub in Georgia in an inexplicable plane crash, while Sibley Riggs, a key witness in the Operation Lone Star case, like Robert Corson, never made it to her Houston court case where she was a key witness in a case with Vesco connections. Custer’s small daughter was severely injured in the plane crash. Riggs’ body, a Fort Lauderdale boat broker, was found at the local airport stuffed in her car’s trunk. All of this was trying to come to light through Operation Lone Star that connected Darby Cay to Georgia, Florida and Texas where a Harris County Prosecutor was selling insider testimony and was indicted for his part in a case that sealed Grand Jury testimony and 70 boxes of information that Thomas Hajecate, a key player in the Lone Star case, needed for his defense. Operation Lone Star case found the FBI holding Hajecate’s needed evidence for over five years. Buy this book for no other reason than to see that Gary was on the trail of the Vesco operation. Vesco’s Louisiana company, Multiponics, was co-owned by former SEC Chairman and Reagan’s CIA Director, William Casey.

When the Harris County medical examiner office was suspected of corruption the “investigator” imported for the clean-up was the lead prosecutor in the Iran-Contra case, Michael Bromwich, who had insured containment in the Iran-Contra fiasco that Webb had also tied to Peter Brewton’s work in Houston. Given this book and Eric’s rolling out of this information for his father I find it much more believable that Gary was murdered. Eric’s father is at the top of the list of Fourth Estate defenders. Without their work the Fouth Estate will give way to the Fifth Estate with the storming of the Bastille to follow. Blasted by Jeff Leen in the Steve Weinberg led debate following the release of Dark Alliance in 1997, Webb will refer to his conversation with Peter Brewton in Houston to which Leen comes nearly unglued as Weinberg piles on, while disingenuously claiming he is not in support of Leen’s position on Webb. Who has moved to Houston to become the Managing Editor of the Houston Chronicle? Vernon Loeb, Leen’s colleague at the Washington Post and the progenitor of the Pat Tillman and Jessica Lynch embellishments as well as the co-author of the Paula Broadwell book All In: The Education of General David Petraeus. You want the truth? Gary Webb gave it to you! Unvarnished! Can you handle the truth? Get all of Webb’s books….and Brewton’s, The Mafia, CIA and George Bush (1992).

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