The opponents of the Administration's anti-Sandinista policies convinced a majority of the Democratic-controlled U. House of Representatives to view the contras with extreme skepticism.
Their efforts resulted in passage in late 1982 of an amendment introduced by Representative Edward P.
The Reagan Administration's Contra Policy President Reagan was an early and vigorous opponent of the Sandinista regime that seized power in Nicaragua in 1979.
As a presidential candidate, Reagan advocated cutting all aid to the Nicaraguan government; as President, Reagan stepped up American activities against the Sandinistas and embraced their opponents, known as the Nicaraguan Democratic Resistance or ``contras.'' Reagan's posture towards the Sandinista government was highly controversial.
As early as February 1984, Reagan's national security adviser, Robert C.
In early December 1983, a compromise was reached: Contra funding for FY 1984 was capped at million -- an amount significantly lower than what the Administration had wanted -- with the possibility that the Administration could approach the Congress for supplemental funds later.
The December 1983 cap on contra aid guaranteed a crisis in the Administration's contra program the following year.
Independent Counsel's look at the ``contra'' side of Iran/contra quickly focused on critical episodes for American policy in Central America.
A discussion of some of these episodes is useful for understanding the prosecutions brought or declined by Independent Counsel.
Boland to the Fiscal Year 1983 Defense Appropriations bill. Controversy over contra policy continued past enactment of the first Boland Amendment.
This first of a series of ``Boland Amendments'' prohibited the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), the principal conduit of covert American support to the contras, from spending any money ``for the purpose of overthrowing the government of Nicaragua.'' 1 1 Defense Appropriations Act for FY 1983, 793, Pub. The Reagan Administration pushed hard for more money for the contras, while House Democrats threatened to cut off such support altogether.
The investigation also centered on what officials knew about that assistance and what they offered when questioned about it.
No effort was made to create a complete historical record of U. activities in the region, or even of American ties to the contras.