sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Friday, October 28, 2005

....N.Y. Times article on the findings of the committee investigating the U.N. oil-for-food scandal:

"Mr. Hussein received $1.8 billion in illicit incomes from surcharges and kickbacks on the sales of oil and humanitarian goods during 1996-2003, when the program ran, the committee concluded in its last report in September.

"The $64 billion program was set up by the Security Council to help ease the effects of United Nations sanctions on the 27 million Iraqis by supplying food and medicines in exchange for letting the Hussein government export oil.

"The report said that Mr. Hussein first steered the program to gain political advantage with political allies and countries in a position to ease United Nations sanctions. Both Russia and France are veto-bearing members of the Security Council."

Paul Volcker, who led the investigative committee:

"Then it got corrupted with a capital C when Saddam figured out how to make money off it by putting on the surcharges and kickbacks."

This is why Saddam Hussein was playing games with U.N. weapons inspectors: As long as sanctions were in place, he was making money hand over fist. Right?


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