The UN bribery scandal cover-up

While the American and world press obsess about photographs of abusive behavior by soldiers assigned to be prison guards, Kofi Annan and his minions at the United Nations are covering up the paper trail of what appears to be the largest bribery scandal in history. The corrupt administration of the so—called Oil—for—Food program, in which bribes were allegedly paid to senior UN officials, and in one of whose major private contractors the Secretary—General's son was employed, provided the secret funds for Saddam Hussein to fund Palestinian death cult bombers, build WMD, as well as lavish palaces for himself, and apparently, bribe senior governmental officials in France and Russia, if published documents from Iraqi Oil Ministry files are to be believed.

 

The 'no blood for oil' crowd is strikingly uninterested in the blood on the hands of the United Nations. Every year Saddam remained in power, tens of thousands of Iraqis died horrific deaths, which make the sexual posing of naked Iraqi prisoners look like college fraternity stunts in comparison. The silence of most of the press enables Kofi to cover his tracks. Possibly, some of the shredders, into which formerly were fed Saddam's enemies, are now being put to a more conventional use, shredding incriminating documents.

 

The New York Post, America's fastest—growing metropolitan daily newspaper, recommends an interesting approach to get to the bottom of the scandal. Paribas, the huge French bank which handled most of the funds in the 'Oil—for—Food' program, happens to hold a charter as a New York State bank, as part of its global operations. The much—maligned Patriot Act allows subpoenas to be issued for any and all records of banks where funds are suspected of being directed to terrorists, a group whose definition Saddam seems to easily meet.

 

All well and good. An excellent approach, in the longer run.

 

However, we live in a political world, and time is critical. There is another approach to consider, in addition, not instead of, the law enforcement approach.

 

The United States taxpayers provide 22% of the funds used by the United Nations, by far the largest share of any country. The United States Congress should begin drafting a bill cutting—off all United States monies flowing to the United Nations, should full disclosure of all evidence, to all inquiries, not take place. Currently, the UN is maintaining that its own internal investigation, placed in the hands of one man of great respect and honor, Paul Volcker, is to be the only instance in which full disclosure will operate.

 

Much as I respect and admire Mr. Volcker, he is only one man, and is an ex—central banker, not a trained forensic investigator, and is rather advanced in years. Up against the UN bureaucracy, the world's champion in the fields of obfuscation, delay, non—accountability, and lassitude, there is absolutely no reason to assume that his investigation will be prompt or definitive.

 

Consider also the domestic political possibilities of legislation demanding UN accountability. There will have to be hearings and a Congressional vote. Right as the nation gears up for a national election. Candidates for Congress and for the Presidency will be asked to take a position on the proposed legislation. What will they do? Will John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and Barbara Boxer, for example, vote to demand full UN compliance with a Congressional investigation? If they do, they will reinforce the point that this is a serious scandal, calling into question the legitimacy of French and Russian opposition to Security Council support for a war to enforce its resolutions.

 

If they don't support such legislation, they will lay themselves open to charges of aiding a cover—up, and being indifferent to the largest financial scandal in history.

 

I hope that Congress will seriously consider its responsibility to the taxpayers, and use our financial leverage with the UN budget, to ensure that full and rapid disclosure of all documentary evidence take place.

While the American and world press obsess about photographs of abusive behavior by soldiers assigned to be prison guards, Kofi Annan and his minions at the United Nations are covering up the paper trail of what appears to be the largest bribery scandal in history. The corrupt administration of the so—called Oil—for—Food program, in which bribes were allegedly paid to senior UN officials, and in one of whose major private contractors the Secretary—General's son was employed, provided the secret funds for Saddam Hussein to fund Palestinian death cult bombers, build WMD, as well as lavish palaces for himself, and apparently, bribe senior governmental officials in France and Russia, if published documents from Iraqi Oil Ministry files are to be believed.

 

The 'no blood for oil' crowd is strikingly uninterested in the blood on the hands of the United Nations. Every year Saddam remained in power, tens of thousands of Iraqis died horrific deaths, which make the sexual posing of naked Iraqi prisoners look like college fraternity stunts in comparison. The silence of most of the press enables Kofi to cover his tracks. Possibly, some of the shredders, into which formerly were fed Saddam's enemies, are now being put to a more conventional use, shredding incriminating documents.

 

The New York Post, America's fastest—growing metropolitan daily newspaper, recommends an interesting approach to get to the bottom of the scandal. Paribas, the huge French bank which handled most of the funds in the 'Oil—for—Food' program, happens to hold a charter as a New York State bank, as part of its global operations. The much—maligned Patriot Act allows subpoenas to be issued for any and all records of banks where funds are suspected of being directed to terrorists, a group whose definition Saddam seems to easily meet.

 

All well and good. An excellent approach, in the longer run.

 

However, we live in a political world, and time is critical. There is another approach to consider, in addition, not instead of, the law enforcement approach.

 

The United States taxpayers provide 22% of the funds used by the United Nations, by far the largest share of any country. The United States Congress should begin drafting a bill cutting—off all United States monies flowing to the United Nations, should full disclosure of all evidence, to all inquiries, not take place. Currently, the UN is maintaining that its own internal investigation, placed in the hands of one man of great respect and honor, Paul Volcker, is to be the only instance in which full disclosure will operate.

 

Much as I respect and admire Mr. Volcker, he is only one man, and is an ex—central banker, not a trained forensic investigator, and is rather advanced in years. Up against the UN bureaucracy, the world's champion in the fields of obfuscation, delay, non—accountability, and lassitude, there is absolutely no reason to assume that his investigation will be prompt or definitive.

 

Consider also the domestic political possibilities of legislation demanding UN accountability. There will have to be hearings and a Congressional vote. Right as the nation gears up for a national election. Candidates for Congress and for the Presidency will be asked to take a position on the proposed legislation. What will they do? Will John Kerry, Hillary Clinton, and Barbara Boxer, for example, vote to demand full UN compliance with a Congressional investigation? If they do, they will reinforce the point that this is a serious scandal, calling into question the legitimacy of French and Russian opposition to Security Council support for a war to enforce its resolutions.

 

If they don't support such legislation, they will lay themselves open to charges of aiding a cover—up, and being indifferent to the largest financial scandal in history.

 

I hope that Congress will seriously consider its responsibility to the taxpayers, and use our financial leverage with the UN budget, to ensure that full and rapid disclosure of all documentary evidence take place.