As I noted last week, Senator Norm Coleman had the last laugh on British MP George Galloway. The Parliament has handed down a rare rebuke and punishment on the raving Saddam Hussein supporter, suspending him for a month for his part in the Oil-For-Food scam at the UN, and later lying about it repeatedly. Coleman writes about the controversy and the Senate’s role in exposing Galloway in today’s Wall Street Journal:
The report relied heavily on evidence uncovered by my subcommittee, the U.N.’s investigation and the U.K. Charity Commission. But the Parliament report went further, even enlisting a forensic scientist to determine that other official Iraqi documents, which provide detailed descriptions of Mr. Galloway’s personal involvement in nefarious deals, were authentic. Moreover, the report reveals the official Iraqi minutes of a meeting between Mr. Galloway and Saddam in which Mr. Galloway overtly discusses Iraqi oil deals — the very deals he’s denied knowing about. According to the minutes, which have been authenticated by the Iraqi government, Mr. Galloway complained to Saddam that problems with oil prices are reducing “our income” and delaying “our dues.”
These documents should quash any notion that Mr. Galloway did not know about oil transactions and had no idea his wife and his political operation were receiving under-the-table money. In short, this report and the volumes of evidence presented in it appear to confirm that Mr. Galloway was neck-deep in Oil for Food deals and that his vociferous denials were nothing more than a web of misleading half-truths.
Mr. Galloway is already claiming that the Parliament’s report relies on fraudulent documents and mendacious witnesses. His shtick rings hollow. It is clear that he is putting up (to borrow his words) “the mother of all smokescreens.”
Consider that roughly six months after his Senate testimony, in October 2005, my subcommittee released another report presenting extensive evidence that Mr. Galloway’s testimony was filled with false or misleading statements. That evidence included bank records showing that his wife received $150,000 from an Oil for Food deal, and that the political operation he portrayed as a children’s charity received at least $446,000 from oil deals. Days later, the U.N.’s investigative committee revealed a different oil deal in which $120,000 went to Mr. Galloway’s wife, and other deals in which hundreds of thousands of dollars went to his political operation. …
At each point, Mr. Galloway has vehemently denied every accusation and all the evidence. But the record should be clear: Mr. Galloway appears to have been personally involved in oil deals under the Oil for Food program and indirectly — through his political operation and his wife — received hundreds of thousands of dollars as a result. The U.K. report exposes a fraud who personally benefited at the expense of the Iraqi people — the very people he was pretending to help.
We should all thank Senator Coleman for his hard work in persevering against the lies and manipulations of Saddam’s chief Western toady. Those who cheered Galloway in 2005 should reconsider whether their partisanship should really take priority over exposing corruption on behalf of genocidal maniacs.
UPDATE: MP, not PM — typed a little too fast. Thanks to CQ commenter kfarg for the correction.
UPDATE II: Delicious schadenfreude:
George Galloway, the Respect MP, was ordered out of the House of Commons last night during a debate on a motion to suspend him for 18 days over his alleged financial links to Saddam Hussein’s regime. …
Mr Galloway said the committee was a “politicised tribunal”. Mr Martin intervened repeatedly and as the MP was ordered from the chamber, he shouted that he would continue his speech outside for anyone who wanted to hear it.