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Iraq, the U.N. and oil-for-food

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posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 11:20 AM
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The United Nations was supposed to oversse a program that allowed Iraq to sell oil for food and other essentials, such as medicine. France and the Soviet Union participated in this program. But, like man other noble ideas, human greed and lust for power entered the picture.

Editorial: "The prospects of the United Nations taking over the transition in Iraq may now be fatally compromised. The world body is caught up in a welter of allegations and evidence suggesting strongly that a noble effort of humanitarian assistance was tainted by greed, bribery, and the most venal kind of power politics. The U.N. was supposed to oversee the oil-for-food program that allowed Saddam Hussein to sell oil and use the proceeds to buy essential food and medicine for the Iraqi people. At least $10 billion, evidently, went into the pockets of political operators.

It is a tribute to the new American-installed democracy in Iraq that an Iraqi newspaper has been in the forefront of exposing the racket and naming the 270 international power brokers who seem to have had their hands in the till. Here's how the scam allegedly worked: Saddam sold oil to his friends and allies around the world at deep discounts. The buyers resold the oil at huge profits. Saddam then got kickbacks of 10 percent from both the oil traders and the suppliers of humanitarian goods. Iraqi bean counters, fortunately, kept meticulous records."


www.usnews.com...


"Especially with the U.N.'s own investigation into Oil-for-Food now taking shape, and more congressional hearings in the works, it is high time to focus on the likelihood that Saddam may have fiddled Oil-for-Food contracts not only to pad his own pockets, buy pals, and acquire clandestine arms but also to fund terrorist groups, quite possibly including al Qaeda.

There are at least two links documented already. Both involve oil buyers picked by Saddam and approved by the U.N. One was a firm with close ties to a Liechtenstein trust that has since been designated by the U.N. itself as "belonging to or affiliated with Al Qaeda." The other was a Swiss-registered subsidiary of a Saudi oil firm that had close dealings with the Taliban during Osama bin Laden's 1990's heyday in Afghanistan."


www.nationalreview.com...




posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 11:35 AM
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Investigators say none of the people involved would have actually taken possession of oil, but rather just the right to buy the oil at a discounted price, which could be resold to a legitimate broker or oil company, at an average profit of about 50 cents a barrel.



50 cents a barrel isn't that deep a discount, although it could still add up to millions of dollars for some of the recipients of the vouchers.

I'd like to find out how many of those vouchers were sold and who they were sold to.


[Edited on 25-4-2004 by AceOfBase]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 11:43 AM
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Well, if they do have a congressional investigation, we'll be hearing more.

Doesn't this just make sense as to why Russia and France were against the removal of Saddam. It would have put an end to their golden goose!!
And, what does it say about Kofi Annan, when his son was involved?



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 12:04 PM
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50 cents a barrel isn't that deep a discount although it could still add up to millions of dollars for some of the recipients of the vouchers.


Millions? A whole lot of millions ;p You sound like you don't think the scandal is that big of deal.hmm



With Iraq's acceptance in late 1996 of U.N. Resolution 986, which allowed limited Iraqi oil exports in exchange for food and other supplies ("oil-for-food"), the country's oil output began increasing more rapidly, to 1.2 million bbl/d in 1997, 2.2 million bbl/d in 1998, and around 2.5 million bbl/d during 1999-2001. Between December 1996 and March 20, 2003, some 3.4 billion barrels of Iraqi oil valued at about $65 billion were exported under the oil-for-food program.


If kick backs were "only" .50 cents a barrel the profit from the scam is staggering. It is no wonder so many countries did NOT want the US invading.

I have seen only minimal effort from TV news focusing on this story. The mainstream media's seems to give this only perfunctory coverage. If Haliburton had been fingered as having a hand in this scam we would see non-stop coverage 24-7.

It's not surprising how little the left-leaning media goes after there friends in the UN; the same lethargy when going after anyone they considered to be on their "team."

Also, as usual we hear very little from the House, Senate or for that matter the President. The White House should be attacking this issue with the same vigor as they do the Taliban. This could take a great deal of political heat off of the President about UN hesitance to start the war (remember they all believed that Iraq had WMD at the time." I wonder, if we hear that Syria has indeed been a warehouse for some of the Iraqi WMD, will the press also give minimal coverage?

When I say minimal I am talking about juxtaposing the revelations by Richard Clark and the 911 hearings to the allegations that MANY people in positions of power in the UN were taking bribes and had vested interest in seeing no US involvement in Iraq...
When you compare the press reactions and full blown media coverage of one and not the other in an election year, I think the bias is plain to see even for the most jaded lefty.

Variable



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 12:10 PM
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Originally posted by Variable



50 cents a barrel isn't that deep a discount although it could still add up to millions of dollars for some of the recipients of the vouchers.


Millions? A whole lot of millions ;p You sound like you don't think the scandal is that big of deal.hmm



With Iraq's acceptance in late 1996 of U.N. Resolution 986, which allowed limited Iraqi oil exports in exchange for food and other supplies ("oil-for-food"), the country's oil output began increasing more rapidly, to 1.2 million bbl/d in 1997, 2.2 million bbl/d in 1998, and around 2.5 million bbl/d during 1999-2001. Between December 1996 and March 20, 2003, some 3.4 billion barrels of Iraqi oil valued at about $65 billion were exported under the oil-for-food program.


If kick backs were "only" .50 cents a barrel the profit from the scam is staggering. It is no wonder so many countries did NOT want the US invading.


Not all of that oil was from vouchers.
A lot of that was sold directly to the oil companies.
In fact, the US purchased over 700 thousand barrels a day.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 12:31 PM
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Like I said, your minimizing the scandal : )

If the UN was in charge of the program, then the UN is the one to blame, not the US or anyone else who bought oil that was for sale. What does the US buying oil from Iraq have to do with the UN scandal? Seems to me your minimizing and throwing in information in the hopes that it will somehow take heat off of the UN.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 12:36 PM
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Originally posted by Variable
Like I said, your minimizing the scandal : )

If the UN was in charge of the program, then the UN is the one to blame, not the US or anyone else who bought oil that was for sale. What does the US buying oil from Iraq have to do with the UN scandal? Seems to me your minimizing and throwing in information in the hopes that it will somehow take heat off of the UN.



You listed all of the oil that came out of Iraq saying that 50 cents a barrel on all that oil would be staggering.

What I'm saying, is that 50 cents a barrel is realated to the sale of the vouchers.

As far as I know, not all of that oil was sold using vouchers.

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by AceOfBase]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 12:50 PM
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I'm not sure why anyone is surprised at the fact that the UN is corrupt. Some of us have been saying this for years.

We always hear stories about how local warlords and bandits in various countries steal the food aid. I used to wonder how the UN could allow this to happen. Now we have a pretty good idea. The oil-for-the-greedy-UN-officials scandal makes one wonder just how many other scams like this people in the UN are pulling elsewhere in the world. Hopefully this gravy train is being derailed now that it's out.

I'm in agreement with Variable. The Republicans need to be hitting this hard because it calls in to question the reasons behind the objections these countires had to invading Iraq. As John Kerry continues to use these objections as a political hammer to try to pound on Bush, the root basis of that arguement is disintergrating rapidly.

I think we will find this is just the very small tip of a really big iceberg.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 01:07 PM
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Woo Hooo!!

Can we also discuss the investigation going on right now into the illegal deals the US representatives under Bremer have made in only one year?

Yeh,really they've been scamming like a Frenchman and they are under official investigation.

Don't throw stones if you're in a glass house.

Or atleast give the two stories equal prominance after all the only difference appears to be that one was under the UN and the other was under the US.

Is t any excuse to slam the UN or are you big enough to admit that your own compatriots are just as corrupt ?



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 01:33 PM
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John, I'm not sure that "only one year" (your words) compares to possibly decades of UN corruption, especially since you haven't offered any links to educate us about illegal deals the US has supposedly been doing according to you.

I just think it's ironic that while our Air Force was getting shot at on a weekly basis enforcing the UN's no-fly zone, the UN was doing business under the table with the people who were shooting at us.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 01:46 PM
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as quoted by John bull 1
Is t any excuse to slam the UN or are you big enough to admit that your own compatriots are just as corrupt ?

Care to divulge those US "compatriots," and their party affiliations, that accepted those Saddam bribes and UN monies, not counting Scott Ritter, of course, he's a given.


All the information on Saddam's bribes, names, countries, and defunct UN money ploys I need right here:

Anti-war nations 'took bribes' before war began.
The French War For Oil, Along With Others.




seekerof

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by Seekerof]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 02:02 PM
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Oh Seeker.You really think I'd make a claim like that without knowing what I'm talking about?

"Iraq's interim trade ministry is investigating alleged corruption of up to $US40 million by members of the US-led Coalition Provisional Authority and senior ministry officials.

Trade minister Ali Allawi says he discovered a month ago that a contract for wooden doors worth about $US80 million had been manipulated.

"I think a third of it was stolen," he said, specifically estimating that "probably around 30, 40 million" disappeared. "

www.abc.net.au...

This is not the only case of corruption.Just one example.

The US administration have been taking what they can but HEY! let's talk about the UN instead.

I know you all prefer that topic.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 02:52 PM
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I read your link John and I'll address it if I may.

$40 million with no names and an undetailed investigation into wooden door contracts in the past year and some complaining about the cell phone network not being completed in time. No where in the article is Amb. Bremer implicated in any way. It just states that he is the leader of the CPA.

vs.

$10 Billion (very conservitive estimate) with names, documentation, and an increasingly clear trail to identified people including Kofi Annans hand-picked director of the oil-for-food program, Benon Sevan, and possibly Annans son, Kojo Annan. This since 1996 and instead of wooden doors, which nice as they are to have, the lack of them doesn't cause people to die, this was food. Yeah, food.

Now I am well aware that two wrongs don't make a right and that any wrongdoing on our part is just bad. However, the difference in severity (by a factor of 250:1 if the conservitive estimates are used) between the subject of the topic (Iraq, the UN and oil-for-food) and the issue that you have raised doesn't even put it in the same ballpark.

10,000,000,000 over 7 years
- 40,000,000 for less than a year, if true
--------------------
9,960,000,000

I don't think your arguement is effective in saying what you wanted it to.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 04:42 PM
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It's always amazing how the left completely ignores anything they don't want to hear, instead they try to obfuscate the issue by detailing "other crimes" equally as bad, as a way of blurring the original issue. You know you are hitting home when they do this though. The typical reaction is to call the person who brought up the "issue" a moron, idiot, or some other pejorative; not a "deep thinker" for instance : )

John Bull posted:


Trade minister Ali Allawi says he discovered a month ago that a contract for wooden doors worth about $US80 million had been manipulated


I don't want to give any credence to the flow of logic but, I would like to say... This is a hell of a lot of wooden doors.

Variable


[Edited on 4/25/2004 by Variable]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 05:48 PM
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The topic area "War on Terrorism" is supposed to be about "The War On Terror, The War With Iraq & The Situation With N. Korea". This Iraq Oil for Food scandal has only been brought up in this section because it is used by people who defend this war. Its not intrinsically related to this area of discussion at all other than it deals with Iraq and the UN. Nowhere is there some type of tie-in to the situation of the "War With Iraq". Its just been made as such to create some sort of justification against UN nations who seemingly opposed the invasion.

As far as actual reality, sure several nations did not engage in hostilities in Iraq, but ALL nations signed off on resolution 1441 which sanctioned the "severe consequences" to be used upon Iraq. Including those listed as being bribed by Saddam.

The reasoning for any Oil for Food scandal threads being in this section are the same reasons as why the more left leaning posters here like John Bull 1 bring up this U.S. based scandal. Its simply to create more justification for their sides. Its the pot calling the kettle black when pro-war posters use the same tactics as anti-war posters. Its just that the anti-war folks here don't usually complain about such tactics used by the pro-war side. Mostly because this type of excuse to justify the war looks like grasping at straws efforts. Its just sad.

In summary, none of this scandal stuff involving Iraq's Oil for Food program should be brought into this discussion area unless there is actual ties to the "War With Iraq". So far, such reasoning is highly dubious. At least the U.S. scandal talked about here is somewhat related as it deals directly with the reconstruction of Iraq that was required after it was blown to pieces by the war.

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by heelstone]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 05:52 PM
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Perhaps this should be moved to 'Other current events' or politics and scandals.

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by AceOfBase]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 06:16 PM
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John, it was just too much for you to take, wasn't it? A thread dare place your precious U.N. in bad light without a counter (and unrelated) attack against the U.S., and in the same thread. The mention of it wouldn't have looked like a defensive political move had you started a separate thread!

But, if you'd like, we can go tit for tat all night long on this particular scene, and I assure you, there'll be alot more tits against each anti-American tat!



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 06:27 PM
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Originally posted by AceOfBase
Perhaps this should be moved to 'Other current events' or politics and scandals.

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by AceOfBase]

Heelstone and Ace of Base, I put this here because I believe it goes here. If the mods feel otherwise, I'm sure they are welcome to move it. It is way more than "Other current events", though.
We're talking here about the UN and several member nations, among them France and Russia, who voted against our going into Iraq to remove Saddam.
Their united stand against our country is a large part of the reason the US is basically alone in Iraq. IMO, the UN is the guilty party, for its holier-than-thou attitude, all the while profitting from Saddam's terrorist regime.

If The war in Iraq is part of the war on terrorism, according to our sitting government, it surely should be part of ther war on terrorism here on ATS.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 06:49 PM
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Here is why this defunct Oil for Food UN Program is connected to the War on Terrorism heelstone:

He said that Iraqi investigators had discovered "memorandums of understanding" suggesting that Saddam could decide which UN officials operated within Iraq. "They were either at his beck and call, or they were sent home," he said. "It seems that we have still only uncovered the tip of the iceberg."

Oil-for-food inquiry says 'key' is $1bn UN paid itself in fees

With such an ability heelstone, who else could be effected through the UN, UNSCAM, errr, I mean UNSCOM, perhaps? As what was just quoted above, this is and has "only uncovered the tip of the iceberg".

Another well informed article/site with even more information on the Oil for Food Program:
Friends of Saddam




seekerof

[Edited on 25-4-2004 by Seekerof]



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 06:57 PM
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Thats the tie in? You do realize they are quoting a man who is associated with Ahmed Chalabi. Not only is that statement extremely vague so that it could mean anything, the source has got to be questioned.




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