As the crime monster continue to rage across the island, many are wondering how did we reach here. Well, it all started way back. Let’s take a look at a forgotten period during the late 70s, the Moonex Affair.
THE MOONEX AFFAIR.
Where it all began-the discovery of guns and ammunition shipped into Jamaica to eliminate the JLP.
Most Jamaicans have not heard of the Moonex Affairs or many may have forgotten this page of our political history.
As the 1980 General Election approached. A series of events began unfolding that ultimately would culminate in the bloodiest election in Jamaica’s history!
From as early as 1974, the man hailed as a ”Visionary”, Michael Manley, was fast losing his popularity and by 1976, was forced to impose a State of Emergency to eek out a victory at the polls.
The following year he announced a state take over of RJR. Graffitis immediately were seen on walls imitating his ”Heavy Manners” slogans…graffitis which read ”Manley yu sure is heavy, yu a burden.”
That ”burden” was felt on empty supermarket shelves as basic food items became very scarce commodities. In 1979, Manley visited the Soviet Union to secure loans for a crashed economy that was suffering seven years of negative growth. It was there he immortalized the term ”Comrade” when he toasted Kosygin in the Grand Kremlin Palace.
He said ”COMRADES…TO THE GLORIOUS MEMORY OF LENIN, TO THE SOVIET UNION, WHICH HAS FREED THE SOULS OF MEN EVERYWHERE.”
In response the Soviets sent 20,000 cases of Sardines to Jamaica to stock the empty supermarket shelves.
A shipment of fish then followed,hailed by Jamaicans as ”Vote me – food”
Ulysis Estrada Lescalles a trained terrorist, by the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) in Iraq and the Cuban Brigades had literally taken over Jamaica, building schools, Micro Dams and could be seen working as doctors at public hospitals in their bid to transform Jamaica into a Soviet satellite between the Middle East and Russia.
But the Stone Polls predicted he would lose heavily at the 1980 polls.
An incenced Michael Manley declared war!!!
He became intent on capitalizing on what his predecessor Wills Isaacs began ”ethnic cleanse(cleansing)” the Opposing JLP out of Kingston and off the face of the earth.
Kalashnakov AK 47 rifles were already stored in Warieka Hills. His assassins, the Brigadistas had returned from Cuba, well trained in guerilla warfare, Home Guards (Informants in Communist countries) was already established. Cuban troops were stationed in Oriente Provincia in Cuba, ready to travel to a secret air strip near Mandeville, equipped for night landing.
The stage was set for a showdown !
Manley’s best friend, John Hearne became disgruntled with the path he was taking and began writing articles in the Gleaner much to his dislike. He was beaten to a pulp at a PNP rally.
David Coore, Eric Bell and Vivian Blake was scared and fled the Manley Cabinet.
Allan Isaacs who beat Herb McKenley in the 1972 election, crossed the floor.
Glenmore Webley, running against then Minister of Finance Hugh Small, was shot in the arm.
Everald Warmington was shot after a JLP meeting.
Mike Henry was shot and campaigned the 1980 election on crutches.
There was an assassination attempt against the life of Hugh Shearer that shocked the nation.
Christopher Seaga had to be closely guarded to school and back. Mrs. Seaga had to be followed even when she went shopping.
The 1980 election was the stage !!!
It was May of that year, a gruesome discovery was made in the Kingston Harbour.
A ship called the Tango Express was searched and over 200,000 shotgun cartridges and 38 calibre pistols were discovered.
The ship, owned by Moonex International and based in Monte Carlo was not traceable (untraceable) with Ruperto Smith Hart, a Cuban and ally of Estrada, as Manager.
This was the ship that was smuggling weapons into Kingston to arm PNP gunmen to eliminate those who oppose them.
On June 17, Dudley Thompson, Minister of Security, boarded a plane bound for Cuba, with Estrada and Ruperto Smith Hart but was barred.
The Gleaner headline of June 19, 1980 carried the story, “Moonex man barred from flying to Cuba, was in a plane with Thompson and Estrada.”
“Moonex International Manager Ruperto Hart was prevented by Immigration officials at the Norman Manley Airport from going on a flight to Cuba on which other passengers were National Security Minister Dudley Thompson and Ambassador Ulyses Estrada.”
This was another of a covert act by the visionary-the great man himself that may well be our next National Hero!
Thompson died in 2012 and was given a State funeral by the PNP, paid for by Jamaican tax payer’s money.