UN Oil-for-Food Scandal Round-Up

One of the major problems with the argument that America should have waited for sanctions or inspections to topple Saddam, or the current one being made by much of the Left that the UN should be the conduit through which America could achieve its goal of democratization of the world is that the UN, frankly, is corrupt to the core. The following is a round-up of the latest articles on the Oil-for-Food scandal that broke recently:
• The Washington Post’s Colum Lynch reports that
“The former Iraqi government of Saddam Hussein pocketed more than $10.1 billion in smuggled oil revenue and illicit proceeds from a U.N.-run humanitarian program between 1997 and 2002, $3.5 billion more than previously estimated, according to testimony by the U.S. General Accounting Office yesterday.”
• The NYTimes’ William Safire writes that “Kofi Annan’s right-hand man, Benon Sevan, had been named by the secretary general to head the oil-for-food program and report directly to him…Now, thanks to evidence of systematic thievery on a huge scale, discovered by free Iraqis in Baghdad, the whole rotten mess of 10 percent kickbacks on billions in contracts is coming to light. In detailed accounts, Susan Sachs in The Times, Therese Raphael in The Wall Street Journal, and Charles Laurence and Inigo Gilmore of London’s Daily Telegraph have flipped over the flat rock of corruption. Assistant Secretary General Sevan, now on an extended vacation until his retirement next month, denied through a spokesman “that I had received oil or oil monies from the former Iraqi regime” and demanded that his doubters produce documentary evidence. The Journal then produced a document in Arabic that suggests Sevan received an allocation of 1.8 million barrels of oil.”
• The Wall Street Journal writes that “The $100 billion Iraqi Oil for Food program was by far the largest relief operation in the history of the United Nations. By extension, it’s rapidly becoming the U.N.’s largest-ever scandal… A mountain of evidence has now accumulated to suggest the Iraqi people suffered from shortages of quality food and medicine not because international sanctions were too strict, but because lax or corrupt oversight at U.N. headquarters in New York allowed Saddam Hussein to exploit the system for his own purposes.”
These articles, and the many others starting to come out, make it clear that the UN simply is not the organization many people think it is. It is time the Left realizes this, and time we think about creating new international institutions that will not have corruption built into their core.


Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Comments are closed.