Friday, February 04, 2005

Kofi, Kofi

It seems the UN oil-for-food scandal is worse than I thought. Yet it remains to be seen if Kofi himself was involved. I personally don't think so but I must admit that's more of a gut-feeling than anything else.

If he's proven guilty I guess I owe the US right-wing perpetrators of the "witch hunt" an apology (not that they care, but I do). But if Kofi himself is cleared then I'll continue to be critical. As I see it, Republican members of Congress have been overly eager to exaggurate the magnitude of the scandal. For instance, this article suggests their $21.2bn figure includes $14.7bn's worth of smuggled oil which "occurred wholly outside the scope of the UN programme".

Not a good day though.

UPDATE: The UN has (finally) put up a site with facts about oil-for-food:
The public discourse on this issue has been dominated by wide-ranging accusations and unsubstantiated claims, making it a challenge to separate fact from fiction.
We need and welcome your help. Please visit often to get the latest facts and information. Let us know if you find false charges to which we should respond.

UPDATE II: The Guardian is optimistic. Mark Malloch thinks the crisis will help them improve accountability. Let's hope he's right.

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