Tass Labels Reagan Contra Plea 'Slander'

Associated Press

The official press agency Tass today accused President Reagan of resorting to "slander and concoctions" in a plea for aid to Nicaraguan contras and compared his speech to the plot of the movie "Red Dawn."

"The President's speech was reminiscent of the script of the controversial anti-communist film 'Red Dawn,' " Tass said in a dispatch from Washington. It said the movie "describes an 'invasion of the United States' by Nicaraguan, Cuban and Soviet armed forces via Mexican territory." In "Red Dawn," the invaders are defeated by a small band of students.

Tass said Reagan conjured up similar images in his televised speech Sunday night pressing for more votes in Congress favoring his proposal of $100 million in military and other aid to rebels fighting the leftist Sandinista government in Nicaragua. Congress is to vote on the proposal Thursday.

"Intimidating the American legislators and general public, the President claimed that Nicaragua, situated thousands of miles from the United States, threatens the national security of the United States and is becoming a 'mortal threat to the entire New World,' " Tass said.

Reagan "resorted to slander and concoctions" and again blamed Nicaragua for terrorism in Central America, Tass charged.

Neither Tass nor Radio Moscow referred specifically to Reagan's attempts to link the Nicaraguan government with drug-smuggling and the killings of four U.S. Marines last summer in San Salvador.

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