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FBI Expands Its Role in International Crime Fighting


July 1994

On June 28, the first day of a trip to nine Central and Eastern European nations, FBI director Louis Freeh called for European Nations to redirect the vast resources once used to fight the cold war into an effort to combat drugs, violence, and terrorism. (Rick Atkinson, "FBI Chief Urges Europeans to Shift Cold War Resources to Fight Crime", The Washington Post, 6/29/94). Freeh said that U.S. law enforcement agencies were ready to join forces with their counterparts overseas in an effort to fight organized crime, "hate crimes" by the radical right, and terrorist attempts to obtain nuclear weapons.

"Crime groups are branching out and going into partnership with other crime groups on an unprecedented scale," he said in his speech at Berlin's city hall. "Crime groups develop working relationships, deals, cartels, joint ventures, mergers - anything that will help them make money, kill their opponents, neutralize the police and, in effect, begin to destroy governments."

Freeh's trip included stops in Ukraine, and Russia, where he opened an FBI office in Moscow.

Commenting that "the world has become a very small and dangerous place," Freeh called for a collective effort to prevent nuclear terrorism. German authorities report an increase in incidents of either fraudulent or actual efforts to peddle "radioactive materials." U.S. ambassador to Germany, Richard Holbrooke, told reporters that international law enforcement efforts are being moved "to the forefront of U.S. foreign policy."