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October 3, 2004
France, Russia, China Cheated Oil-For-Food: London Times

As further evidence rolls in about European complicity in the record-breaking corruption at Turtle Bay within the UN Oil-For-Food program, the notion of French cooperation against anything involving Saddam Hussein increasingly looks like utopian fantasy rather than rational options (via Instapundit):

A LEAKED report has exposed the extent of alleged corruption in the United Nations’ oil-for-food scheme in Iraq, identifying up to 200 individuals and companies that made profits running into hundreds of millions of pounds from it. The report largely implicates France and Russia, whom Saddam Hussein targeted as he sought support on the UN Security Council before the Iraq war. Both countries were influential voices against UN-backed action.

A senior UN official responsible for the scheme is identified as a major beneficiary. The report, marked “highly confidential”, also finds that the private office of Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, profited from the cheap oil. Saddam’s regime awarded this oil during the run-up to the war when military action was being discussed at the UN.

The report was drawn up on behalf of the interim Iraqi government in preparation for a possible legal action against those who may have illicitly profited under Saddam. The Iraqis hired the London-based accountants KPMG and lawyers Freshfields to advise on future action.

It details a catalogue of alleged bribery and corruption perpetrated by Saddam under the UN programme, revealing how the regime lined its pockets and those of influential politicians, journalists and UN officials.

The UNSC was fatally compromised on Iraq due to the millions of dollars flowing to three nations with veto power on the council: France, Russia, and China. Nor was that an accident, according to the Times of London. Saddam specifically made sure that the oil and cash flowed to those veto-holding nations that could possibly remain in his corner, assuming (correctly) that the US and UK would always oppose his ambitions regardless of oil flow.

As Glenn says, readers in the blogosphere will hardly find this surprising. The list of beneficiaries from Saddam's kickbacks already demonstrated last winter that the French and Russians, at least, had healthy economic incentives to prop Saddam's regime up as long as the OFF program allowed him complete economic control over Iraq. They allowed Saddam to pocket billions of dollars during those years as his people starved, and these same nations turned around and blamed the US and the UK for the poverty and misery the sanctions imposed on the Iraqi people. It's hard to measure the cynicism involved in that; it's simply breathtaking.

The American media has not paid much attention to this, and one can see why. If the American people ever realized the extent to which the UNSC sold out to Saddam, the UN would be finished as a political force within the United States and the globalists within the political establishment here would be completely discredited, including John Kerry. Those who search for legitimacy among such thieves and backstabbers are doomed to bitter failure, and those who believe they see it are blind.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 3, 2004 10:43 AM

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» France, Russia and China: Oil for food fraud from The Key Monk
Captain Ed says if the US public realized how compromised the UN Security Council was when it voted on the US resolutions for force against Iraq . . . the UN would be finished as a political force in the US. Maybe that's why the US press, with the exce... [Read More]

Tracked on October 3, 2004 11:38 AM

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