Monday, February 25, 2008

Oil for Food

With very little fanfare earlier this month the United Nations (UN) quietly transferred US$161 million from the defunct Iraqi oil for food program to a "development program for Iraq" according to an Associated Press article.

What I found most interesting is that the article mentioned that this program ran from 1996 to 2003 but made no mention of how much money was involved or of course was stolen due to the massive corruption in this program. Former US Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker led an 18 month investigation but no where did the article mention anyone going to prison for this corruption.

So the UN closed the program in 2003 but took a full 5 years to dispense with the remaining money. Yes, there was a full blown war going on in Iraq but I am confident the money could have been better spent helping Iraqi refugees versus sitting in a UN bank account.

Let's launch a program to create jobs in Iraq by simply moving the UN headquarters from New York City to Baghdad, Iraq. This would be an ideal way to get the UN leadership on the front lines of today's conflicts versus touring the fine restaurants and night clubs of New York City.


No comments: