Saturday, February 05, 2005

Shock at the United Nations

As reported in the New York Times, the UN Independent Inquiry Committee headed by Paul Volcker has issued a hefty interim report. According to the Volcker report, the UN oil-for-food program was "riddled with political favoritism and mismanagement." In particular, as the NYT reported,

The conduct of Benon V. Sevan, a Cypriot official who ran the program from 1997 until its demise in 2003, was a "grave and continuing conflict of interest" and had "seriously undermined the integrity of the United Nations."

In response to this finding, the UN stated that "the secretary general was shocked at the report's findings about Mr. Sevan."

Kofi Annan's "shock" inevitably reminds one of the famous scene in the movie Casablanca, where Captain Louis Renault, the lovable but corrupt police official played by Claude Rains, closes Rick's cafe under pressure from the Germans:

Rick: How can you close me up? On what grounds?
Louis: I'm shocked - shocked - to find gambling is going on in here!
Croupier: Your winnings, sir.
Louis: Oh, thank you very much.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's about how it is. Next. the media feigns shock at the fact the Shiites will win in Iraq, and asks itself if this means that Iraq is headed for an Iranian style theocracy (it doesn't).

it is like watching a pathetic comedy happen.

6:12 AM, February 05, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oooppps...That last post wasn't "anonymous". It was me: John ROgers (

F****n' Blogger!

6:13 AM, February 05, 2005  
Blogger sygamel said...

Apropos analogy, Tom.

10:27 AM, February 05, 2005  
Blogger American On Line said...

I wonder why the 'people' who are employed in the "media" that has one thiong to say is so dumb, while the 'people' who are employed in the other "media," are so smart.

Considering few of them are all too sharp, I caanot figure out how it happens that way.

10:32 AM, February 05, 2005  
Blogger Gindy said...

"Volcker report, the UN oil-for-food program was "riddled with political favoritism and mismanagement." "

If he had a conflict of interest, then this sentence includes Volcker.

12:25 PM, February 05, 2005  
Blogger Esther said...

This whole thing is a mess. Who knows what can be trusted in this report. If nothing else, your Casablanca quote is apropos.

2:51 PM, February 05, 2005  

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