Teacher's Ramblings

A potpourri of education, politics, family matters, and current events.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The Point of the UN is What?

(HT Eddie) The stench of this scandal just keeps getting worse. When are we going to get out of the UN?

Benon Sevan, the official accused of improperly receiving lucrative rights to purchase oil from Saddam Hussein's government while he was running the U.N. oil-for-food program in Iraq, discouraged his staff from probing allegations of corruption and helped block efforts by the U.N. anti-corruption unit to assess where the program was vulnerable to abuse, according to senior U.N. officials.

[. . . ]

China, France, Russia, Syria and other governments, which represented companies competing for billions of dollars' worth of business, stalled measures aimed at ending corruption, U.S. Ambassador Patrick F. Kennedy, who tracked the program for more than three years, told a House subcommittee last month.

The U.N. Security Council established the oil-for-food program to address the humanitarian impact of economic sanctions against Iraq by allowing the country to sell oil so it could purchase food, medications and other essentials. It oversaw the export of $64 billion worth of Iraqi oil between December 1996 and November 2003. Sevan's policy took shape in late 2000, just as Hussein's government stepped up its efforts to siphon money from the program by requiring companies to pay kickbacks for the privilege of purchasing Iraqi oil or selling goods to the government.

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