There is still more controversy swirling around another person close to Secretary-General Annan. His handpicked director of the oil-for-food program's oversight agency, Benon Sevan, was reportedly on the take from the Saddam's government. A U.S. Senate Committee has documents taken by our forces from the Iraqi oil ministry showing that Sevan received allotments of oil from Iraq worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, perhaps millions.
Abuse was rampant in the oil-for-food program. Senate investigators believe that more that $21 billion may have gone back to Saddam's regime, and some of those funds may be financing the insurgency we face today. Moreover, the United Nations is facing charges of misbehavior worldwide: peacekeeping troops accused of rape and extortion, United Nations officials failing to protect civilians in the Sudan, and even sexual harassment and favoritism back at United Nations headquarters in New York.
Obviously, it is time for young Kojo's father to go. The United Nations has been a tabernacle of hypocrisy for decades. The racism it has practiced against unfavored nations -- for instance, Israel -- is well known. The corruption is now impossible to ignore. The departure of Kofi Annan should be the first gesture at reform, but much more is needed.
The halls of United Nations headquarters crawl with conspiracy. During the Cold War, the conspiring was done mainly for political advantage. Now, it is for that and for lucrative deals. There will be needed many more retirements before the United Nations' integrity is restored. For now, our government ought to be demanding reform and refusing to send this corrupt institution any more money until reform begins.
For months, I have marveled at news stories reporting Bill Clinton's interest in someday having Kofi Annan's job. Now, having scrutinized the murky doings of the United Nations, I think I understand. Chelsea might need a job.
How is this for a deal? If Annan retires, we promise not to send Bill Clinton to take his place. Rather, we shall get both Clintons a job at Cotecna SA.
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