Several dollars short and several days late.

“Lobstertom” writes:

Finally they’ve given us a report on the Oil for Food scandal – buried in the Business section.

It is “We discovered this…” and “we found that…” It is an absolute lot of nonsense. And of course with a shot at the Americans in the last line.

Also they fail to mention Kofi Annan at all – as you will know UNSCAM was run out of his office.

If they have changed the “report” I have already taken a copy – I’ll let you know if they change it.

I was amused but not surprised by the headline: “Companies in ‘oil-for-food scam'” True, companies were one end of it. But given that it takes two to tango wouldn’t an equally valid headline have been “UN in ‘oil-for-food scam'”? Equally valid but not equally likely to appear.

Come to think of it another equally valid but not equally likely headline would be “Biggest Financial Scandal in the History of the World.”

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45 Responses to Several dollars short and several days late.

  1. Susan says:

    Heh. I was just about to come over here and post this, but Natalie has beat me to it. Yes, it’s typical of the Beeb to sit on the story for donkey’s years and then only report on it when they can find some angle to make the US look bad. Weren’t they at the forefront of the whiners who complained that UN sanctions were killing 500,000 Iraqi children a year? Now they are bitching because the US Navy supposedly didn’t enforce the sanctions strictly enough. Also, I do not recall ever seeing the BBC urging other nations to give the US a hand in helping to enforce sanctions.

    BBC mindset: a mass of ludicrous contradictions with but one idee fixe: whatever the issue is, whatever side is taken, if something goes wrong, it’s all America’s (or
    Israel’s) fault.


  2. bob says:

    BBC article “Dealing with smuggling was mainly the job of the American navy, not the UN.”

    What ships sailed the border between Iraq & Turkey?


  3. John says:

    Yeah, but what will BBC say if Kofi loses this alleged no-confidence vote?


  4. Pam says:

    And on a related note, how long do we think the BBC will take to acknowledge, if ever, the “no confidence” vote in Kofi and Co. currently being brought by the UN staff members today? Fox News is all over it.I wonder what the spin will be re this story, possibly the UN staff members are all on the US/CIA payroll? Karl Rove “agents” acting to destroy the UN?


  5. Pam says:

    (Sort of) O/T –

    One of our legislators has “had enough” of the UN. Rep. Scott Garrett(R-NJ) has just announced he’s spearheading legislation to cut off our funding of the UN. This guy is not a loose cannon type, either, he’s solid, good reputation. Now to get rest of Congress, or most of it, on board.


  6. Michael Gill says:

    Pam – the clock is ticking on this story! Let’s see if the Beeb picks it up any quicker than Rathergate.


  7. Pam says:

    Michael Gill – I think they’ll have to acknowledge this, don’t you, or am I just kidding myself? The story has become the lead on all the FoxNews programs, and they’re starting to talk about “is this the end of Kofi”… Oh, would that it would be true! All the dominoes falling, and I have a girls night out tonight and I’ll miss all this. Darn! I can just see O’Reilly now…


  8. Josh says:

    Susan’s comments are right on. Why does the BBC even bother writing stories? I can create a computer program for them that takes a title and comment as imput and outputs a “story” that blames the US and Israel.


  9. JohninLondon says:

    BBC has a new “Newswatch” space that is intended to let people comment on the news.

    On the right hand side, there is a link to a video of the Head of Editorial Policy being totally mealy-mouthed about the term “insurgent”.


  10. Anthony says:

    Off topic

    How much coverage has the BBC given to this weeks trial of the Asian thug found guilty of the racist abduction, murder and disembowelment of a young white Scottish lad (Kriss Donald, aged 15) in Glasgow last March. At the same time BBC online and BBC television news devotes ample time to the alleged racist taunts in the England – Spain football match. Will the BBC devote the same amount of coverage to this murder as it did to the murder of Stephen Lawrence?


  11. Michael Gill says:

    “I think they’ll have to acknowledge this, don’t you, or am I just kidding myself?”

    Well don’t hold your breath! At the moment St Kofi is busy with yet another UN scandal:

    The UN is rotten to the core.


  12. Pam says:

    Michael Gill – Missed that one, thanks. The UN seems to be sprouting sexual abuse scandals all over these days, two continents thus far and counting! Maybe the Iraqi’s should be grateful the UN bailed out, they have more than enough rapists, a.k.a “freedom fighters”, afflicting their population as it is.


  13. ken kautsky says:

    The buck stops with Tessa Jowell.

    Tessa Jowell is the minister responsible for Arts and Culture – including broadcasting within Britain.

    The unusual degree of autonomy given to a public bureacracy, like the BBC, never operated to completely wipe out the overiding conventions of responsible government within the British landscape.

    I urge all concerned citizens to focus their critcisms about the BBC on to the responsible minister.


    Ken Kautsky


  14. JohninLondon says:


    I remember the story at the time of the lad’s abduction. Have even BBC Scotland covered it properly ?

    That case was far worse – and just as newsworthy – as the US Marine incident. Today the BBC is heaadlining the International Committee of the Red Cross and their equation of that heat-of-battle incident with the cold-blooded and brutal murder of the Irish/Iraqi aid worker. Their implication is that the killing of a terrorist sorry – insurgent” is just as bad as the killing of an aid worker. Which the BBC clearly accepts – and proceeds to give their No 1 news slot to this morning.


  15. JohninLondon says:

    The International Red Cross says that the conflict in Iraq is having a devastating effect on the Iraqi people. I don’t recall them complaining about the incesssant bombing campaign waged by the “insurgents” in Fallujah. Blowing up dozens of Iraqis at a time every few days seemed fairly devastating ?


  16. marc says:

    I posted my take on this story with lots of links.

    The BBC seem to have forgotten about the illegal oil pipeline from Iraq to Syria. The link to that story is on my post.

    I’ve put a new category on my blogroll linking to the various media complaints departments. For me, it is not enough that we blog about the outrageous lies by the BBC, we have to take action. Everyone needs to email the BBC and complain.


  17. Peter Bolton says:

    In the BBC’s collective mind not only can Israel and the USA do no right neither can the UN nor the EU do any wrong.
    We have the Oil for Food scandal being completely underplayed by the BBC but this is the same treatment as the inability of the EU to balance its books for the past ten years.
    You can just imagine the likely treatment by the BBC of a british or american multi-national company that failed to balance its books for ten years?


  18. Pam says:

    Anthony – I was very affected by that story, absolutely heart breaking. That young man reminded me so much of my own son, it was actually painful to read. My prayers are with his family, their grief must be enormous, and I pray they find some way to continue to move forward. I truly don’t think I could cope in their position. God bless them.


  19. ed says:

    It is truly amazing how the BBC have taken it upon themselves to ‘manage’ this story about UNscam. Naturally they feel great distaste at the language that’s been usesd to describe the UN. Naturally they detest some of the voices raised against the UN.

    But the way they’ve hushed it up and now claim to be ‘breaking’ the story- which amounts to saying that it’s a different story to the one that’s been pressed generally in the media- has surprised even me.


  20. theghostofredken says:

    Oh dear. When you’ve wiped the foam from around your mouths perhaps you might consider that:

    These are allegations of corruption not fact.

    The only institution implicated so far is the US branch of a French Bank, and the UN guy from Cyprus. (See above link).

    Why are the CIA figures of the scale of the alleged corruption so much higher than everybody else except Fox is willing to report? Now just a hypothesis but, is it not possible that the CIA is deliberately overstating the case to deflect criticism for their recent spate of duff intelligence?


  21. JohninLondon says:


    That really was a pathetic attempt to cover up for the N.

    Do you agree that BILLIONS went astray ? On the UN’s watch ?

    Best case – the UN is hopelessly inefficient and cannot be trusted to run anything.

    More likely case – there was rampant corruption going right near the top of the UN and involving the key nations that opposed action on Iraq. It is not the CIA leading the criticisms of the UN, it is bipartisan feeling in Congress who are sick of the cover-up. No matter how you try to minimise it – Money-for-Oil is THE BIGGEST SCAM EVER.


  22. theghostofredken says:

    “Do you agree that BILLIONS went astray?”

    I will if the facts suggest they did, but until then I’m keeping an open mind.
    Don’t count your chickens, etc, etc.

    No-one except Fox and the CIA has put the figure anywhere near the Billion mark.


  23. theghostofredken says:

    “On the UN’s watch ?”

    Does a French bank in the US count as the UN’s watch? I’m not convinced.

    “Money-for-Oil is THE BIGGEST SCAM EVER.”

    Wasn’t that ENRON?


  24. Allan@Aberdeen says:

    Enron is to-date the largest scam in the public domain and the beneficiaries have been tried and jailed in open court in the US. There are probably even larger scandals involving Elf and Total’s adventures but the French have a different approach – ask Jacques Osirak Boukassa Chirac, their President. There are US companies cited in the House deliberations but these cannot be made public because due process is underway to apprehend those Americans involved – something unlikely to be imitated in France. It is of note that Kofi Annan refused to allow the UN’s documents to be reviewed by the Senate’s investigators.
    BBC, UN, Chirac, Annan – all one great big cover-up.


  25. andrew paterson says:

    Ghostofredken, either the UN is so badly run that such a fraud can take place under the noses of its senior players without their notice or it is corrupt to the core. Either way it is a disgrace.


  26. Rob Read says:

    UN & France, both corrupt and anti-american.

    When will the US stop funding the cancer in its country?


  27. theghostofredken says:

    “It is of note that Kofi Annan refused to allow the UN’s documents to be reviewed by the Senate’s investigators.”

    Well they’re doing their own investigation so it could be case of ‘we’ll get ours done first’ or just simply that the UN doesn’t feel its only accountable to only one member of the Security Council. Surely an independent investigation would be the best way forward in any case?

    “Either the UN is so badly run that such a fraud can take place under the noses of its senior players without their notice or it is corrupt to the core.”

    I think the former is probably most likely, but time will tell. I’m prepared for the shouting down I might get here but until any major news network, other than Fox, makes some serious allegations then I’m treating all the reports so far with a pinch of salt.


  28. JohninLondon says:


    There are none so blind as those who won’t see. You are taking a benign view of a scam that apparently directly helped fund the terrorists killing coalition troops ainnocent Iraqis. Of course that is the BBC line too – it is a scandal that the BBC has not devoted eg a Panorama investigation to the UN/Saddam shenanigans.


  29. Pam says:

    ghost – I, however, DO feel the UN is accountable to the US, as my tax dollars fund the damn thing. If any other nation gave a crap to investigate it, I would support their efforts as well. PLUS, the UN building sits in my city, taking up perfectly good parking/retail/housing space. Their members haven’t paid a parking ticket since they got here. Further, as Congress works for me, they have my blessing and wholehearted support in investigating this matter. It’s sad you don’t demand the same level of accountability from YOUR government as how it spends your money and represents your interests. Even sadder that so many Bits who don’t support the politics of the BBC are forced to pay for that, too.


  30. andrew paterson says:

    ‘I think the former is probably most likely, but time will tell. I’m prepared for the shouting down I might get here but until any major news network, other than Fox, makes some serious allegations then I’m treating all the reports so far with a pinch of salt.’

    Fair enough but the fact Kofi Annan’s son is so directly involved suggests the latter rather than the former.


  31. theghostofredken says:

    Legally I think they would be on tricky ground, with the ongoing investigations and all that malarkey. My main problem with the whole ‘scam’ is why haven’t the other major news outlets picked it up to a greater degree? Perhaps you could claim bias on the part of the BBC, but everyone else too?

    In situations like this it’s often the case that the media know something we don’t which makes them reluctant to promote it up the news-worthy-ness ranks. And that could be that the story is a stinker. Possibly.


  32. theghostofredken says:

    “but the fact Kofi Annan’s son is so directly involved suggests the latter rather than the former.”

    That doesn’t seem much more than speculation at the moment, the CBS article only names some guy called Bevan, who’s from Cyprus.


  33. Allan@Aberdeen says:

    In response to Pam’s bemoaning the corrupt, wasteful, unaccountable, amoral, terrorist-supporting, UN on her doorstep, we over here have the EU. Fortunately, the BBC keeps both of these bodies under the closest scrutiny.


  34. JohninLondon says:

    New York Post and the Wall Street Journal have run stories for many months on the scam. I don’t see the WSJ as a lunatic rag.

    But much os the US TV media thinks the sun shines out of Kofi’s fundament – CNN, CBS, NBC – huge bias against Bush, maybe that is why they haven’t chased the UN story ? Dan Rather would prefer to run a continuous story about forged documents about Bush than attend to a real scam ?


  35. theghostofredken says:

    John: I think it’s unlikely. If the story was as huge as some people think it is then it would be too big ignore. Our national media wouldn’t refrain from having a dig at the French either, which is another reason why I’m quite sceptical about the whole thing.


  36. andrew paterson says:

    theghostofredken the UN oil for food scandal exists whether you choose to believe it or not. Why would the UN be investigating itself if nothing was wrong?

    When you look at how the deal was set up it’s no suprise it was so throughly comprimised.


  37. theghostofredken says:

    Andrew: Not if all the allegations are unsubstantiated. Not that I’m saying they will be, but hold ya horses…it’s early days yet.

    “Why would the UN be investigating itself if nothing was wrong?”

    That’s not an indication of guilt though is it?


  38. andrew paterson says:

    You cannot underestimate how big a deal this is, nor can it be wished away. If you look, most reputable media organisations are covering this as their is a huge case to answer.


  39. Pam says:

    ghost – I can and do claim bias with regard to CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC. Let me include Al-Jazeera also, I don’t want to leave anyone out.
    The examples I could cite would be too numerous to mention, but here’s one of my favorites: CBS still hasn’t explained why they attempted to pass off PROVEN forged documents discrediting Pres. Bush as genuine, although a “full investigation” was promised. I, for one, would never accuse the BBC of having a lock on bias.

    Allen@Aberdeen – My complaints re the UN are miniscule in comparison to your situation with the EU. At least the UN is thoroughly impotent, albeit expensive. Am I correct in understanding you are now to have a EU army? Also, my prayers to and appreciation for your magnificent Black Watch soldiers.


  40. Pam says:

    andrew paterson – I think it’s perfectly understandable that the UN would investigate itself, why not? They could then just pardon themselves, just as St. Kofi recently pardoned the sex offender in his employ.(which led to the “no confidence” vote, NOT covered by the BBC as yet). “External” investigations are to be avoided, “internal” ones are fine!


  41. Monkey says:

    If the BBC was worth anything as a journalistic institution they’d be doing their own investigations into the oil for food debacle. Afterall, it is literally the biggest scandal in world history.

    If only they’d stop making silly left wing documentries about the ‘neocons’ or Vietnam, and started paying attention to more serious issues. (Such as Europes imploding population).

    Can you imagine the commitee meetings where they discuss what programmes they’re going to make?

    How in the hell have they failed to make a documentry about EU corruption? The Commision has refused to release their accounts for the 10th year running.

    There is such a goldmine of juicey material to cover when it comes to the EU, but I doubt we will ever see any of the BBC’s vast resources employed to shed light on the sleaze of Brussels. This inertia alone suggests a pro-EU bias.


  42. JohninLondon says:


    The nearest the BBC ever got to enquiring about EU corruption was to have yet another cosy interview with Neil Kinnock – who presided over the apathy and the cover-ups. I don’t recall them ever trying to interview any of the whistle-blowers.

    Likewise they are not interviewing any of the people who have made allegations about the N scam, or even any of the journalists who have researched the matter. In their mind, IDS’s employment of his wife was more a more heinous scam than the UN allowing billions of dollars worth of kickbacks to finance a dictator and keep him free from Security Council action.


  43. Sandy P says:


    The site is “Friends of Saddam” and Claudia Rosett has been on this like a cheap suit for a long time.

    It’s not just FoxNews and the CIA at this point in time, the American blogosphere has been all over this since at least last summer, if not spring.

    There won’t be too much UN guilt, the shredders were working overtime since last year when the Iraqis let the cat out of the bag.


  44. Sandy P says:

    –Not if all the allegations are unsubstantiated. Not that I’m saying they will be, but hold ya horses…it’s early days yet. —

    It’s only early to you because it really hasn’t been brought to the public’s attention yet.

    Congress – both houses — have investigations going.

    Check out Friends of Saddam for updates.