UN Credibility – can it get much lower?

While the pious and terminally hopeful supporters of the UN still bleat that America had no business handling Saddam’s regime without the approval and support of the UN, the dirty dealings of Kofi Annan’s top appointees to the Iraq Oil for Food Program are being spread out for all to see.

At the center of this latest UN corruption are Kofi Annan’s hand-picked director of the oil-for-food program, Benon Sevan, and Annan’s son, Kojo Annan.

You can read all of the reports in one place now. Stephen Sherman has created a new blog, Friends of Saddam which covers the UN Oil for Food Scandal, Saddam, and his 270 Global Friends

Under the UN’s nose, Saddam Hussein skimmed off billions. He sold oil to friendly firms at deep discounts, which then resold it for huge profits. They paid him kickbacks of 10 per cent. He also paid inflated prices (in return for more kickbacks) for inferior food and medicine. That was easy, because Saddam’s regime had the power to approve all the suppliers. He spent some of the proceeds on bigger palaces and fleets of new Mercedes for his goon squads. He also paid out generous bribes to foreign friends, friends who were politically connected and opposed sanctions or military action against Iraq. (Emphasis mine.)

Starting with al-Mada’s list of 270 bribe recipients in late January, this story has been slowly building steam. Now, Paul Volcker will head a UN investigation and the US Congress has started one too. This new blog, Friends of Saddam, will follow those investigations and other reports.

This blog contains Claudia Rosett’s article, The Oil-for-Food Scam: What Did Kofi Annan Know, and When Did He Know It? which is the best overview of the whole situation I have seen. Do yourself a favor and start with this one. Here is a direct link to her original article.

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