The UN’s Money-For-Peace Scam

Via ScrappleFace.Com,

U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan today vigorously denied allegations that he has overseen a complex, fraudulent scheme to pilfer billions of dollars from 191 nations under the guise of providing “global peace services.”

. . .

Mr. Annan brushed off suggestions that he should step down, and insisted he has fulfilled his role of fostering global peace by “holding meetings, eating in fine restaurants and speaking very softly in a charming accent.”

You Mean Genocide and Corruption Aren’t Good for the Economy?

Speaking at a conference in Ethiopia, United Nations investment analyst stated the obvious — investors don’t want to put their money into Africa when they see genocide in Sudan, civil war in Ivory Coast, and the sort of endemic corruption in countries like Zimbabwe.

According to the BBC, Africa as a whole only sees about $15 billion total each year. That’s just pathetic.

Moreover, even in countries where there are not ongoing wars or endemic corruption, there is plenty to trouble investors. South African president Thabo Mbeki’s close relationship and support of Zimbabwe strongman Robert Mugabe, for example, must surely give some investors pause.

Unfortunately, there seems to be no end in sight to such problems, as Africa seems unable to get itself off a vicious cycle of war and corruption.


Africa conflicts ‘scare investors’. The BBC, November 22, 2004.

The UN’s Oil-for-Terrorists Program

The Associated Press reported earlier this week that Saddam Hussein was able to divert millions of dollars from the United Nations’ oil-for-food program in order to use that money to pay off the families of Palestinian suicide bombers. Which, of course, is impossible since we know that Hussein never supported terrorism and was no imminent threat to anyone.

According to the AP,

The former Iraqi president tapped secret bank accounts in Jordan — where he collected bribes from foreign companies and individuals doing illicit business under the humanitarian program — to reward the families up to $25,000 each, [U.S. Congressional] investigators told The Associated Press.

Hussein may have been able to divert more than $21 billion from the oil-for-food program.

First, this illustrates that claims that the sanctions were causing humanitarian problems in Iraq were a complete sham. Hussein had plenty of opportunities to meet the basic needs of his people but, like other tyrants before him, chose his own interests — and those of terrorists — over his people’s.

Second, this and other ongoing scandals provide further examples of what a joke the United Nations is. From having Sudan head up the UN’s main human rights body, to allowing Hussein to divert UN-administered funds for terrorism, to the complete charade that is the UN’s efforts to stop genocide in Sudan, the UN has absolutely zero credibility.

Third, contrary to some pundits I’ve seen on cable news this weekend, this revolution does provide further evidence that the U.S. invasion of Iraq was the correct course of action. Certainly the United States was wrong on the major detail it hyped — the presence of easily deployable weapons of mass destruction — but certainly U.S. policy makers have been more than vindicated on the larger picture that Iraq was a major threat to the Middle East and the world, and would have only grown to become a bigger threat if it had not been dealt with.

A few weeks ago I ran across an academic study suggesting that the Iraq war was partially responsible for the decline in suicide bombings that Israel has experienced over the last couple years (obviously a big part of that decline is also the security fence, and I didn’t really look at the study close enough to see how they handled confounding variables like that). But I don’t think you need a study to realize that the world is better off without a government that openly solicited and funded terrorism.


Probe: Oil funds paid for bombers. Desmond butler, Associated Press, November 17, 2004.

Iraq oil corruption ‘tops $21bn’. The BBc, November 16, 2004.

I’m From the Government, and I’m Here to Help YouÂ…

There’s a long series of jokes/sardonic comments built around the phrase, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.” For the 21st century, however, it looks like the phrase needs to be updated to “I’m from the United Nations and I’m here to help you.

I guess after expending all its energy condemning Israel and the United States, the UN just doesn’t have the time or resources to provide adequate security for its refugee camps.


180 Congo Refugees Massacred in Burundi. Associated Press, August 14, 2004.

Screw the UN — the US/UK Should Have Acted Unilaterally in Sudan Already

I agree completely with Jim Moore on the ongoing genocide in Sudan. It is long past time for the United States to stop twiddling its thumbs waiting for the United Nations and act unilaterally again to stop genocide in Sudan.

A bigger question is exactly what the hell would have to happen for the United Nations to actually do something about genocided. It sat on the sidelines while hundreds of thousands of Tutsis were slaughtered. It sat on the sidelines again in Yugoslavia while mass graves and institutionalized rape were being used, and now it is standing by while Sudanese Arabs slaughter Sudanese Blacks.

What would it take for the UN to actually intervene to stop genocide? Does a country have to actually put out a sign saying “Gas Chambers Here”?

Not surprisingly, again China, France and Russia are the main obstacles to getting a resolution passed in the Security Council (France’s position seems to be that the only time it wants to send troops anywhere is to defend those responsible for genocide, as it did in Rwanda).

The Problem with Trying Cases in UN-Sponsored Tribunes

After the capture of Saddam Hussein, a lot of the usual suspects began arguing that rather than try him in some U.S. military or Iraqi court, that instead he should be handed over to some sort of UN-sponsored international tribune like those who perpetrated the Rwandan and Yugoslavian genocides were.

In the case of the Rwandan genoicide, though, the United Nations tribune has turned into a classic case of justice delayed and denied. Here’s how the BBC described the attitudes of the Rwandan government — which has tried hundreds of peopel accuse of genocide itself — toward the UN tribunal,

Rwanda has expressed its anger at the tribunal’s lck of results in prosecuting the chief perpetrators of genocide, given the resources at their disposal.

Rwanda’s Attorney General Gerald Gahima said the tribunal has had little impact on Rwandans.

After spending over half a billion dollars and with more than 800 staff, the tribunal has achieved only 12 convictions in eight years.

That’s right — as of November, the UN tribunal was spending in excess of $40 million per conviction (that’s as much money as the per capita income for 160,000 people living in Rwanda). In fact from the start of the 1994 genocide, the United Nations has repeatedly acted, both intentionally and unintentionally, to benefit and protect those who carried out the genocide.

Nobody’s going to want to hand over those convicted of war crimes to the United Nations for trial until that organization proves it can effectively and efficiently try such crimes. At the moment, handing such individuals over to the UN makes about as much sense as it would be to ask Marcia Clark to step in to prosecute the Kobe Bryant case.


Rwandan leaders on genocide trial. The BBC, November 27, 2003.