Sunday, November 13, 2005

All Hail Kofi!

The ABC News online leads this morning with Kofi Annan's heroic visit to Baghdad now the Coalition of the Willing led by America has made it safe for him to show his sorry ass.

Speaking at a news conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari, Mr Annan spoke out in favour of national reconciliation and urged all factions to be allowed to join in the political reform process.

"The idea is that reconciliation is absolutely essential in Iraq - I don't think anyone would argue with that," he said.

"The political transition must be a process that is inclusive and transparent and takes into account the concerns of all groups," he later added.
Mr Annan knows all about 'transparency'.

The ABC also carries this story as its second lead:

Labor wants AWB inquiry to probe Govt role

The Federal Opposition has seized on a report that Iraq has suspended imports of Australian wheat, to demand the broadening of powers of a royal commission into the scandal involving payments by AWB.

A newspaper report says the Iraqi Grain Board has ceased the trade, until AWB repays hundreds of millions of dollars paid to a Jordanian transport company which ended up in the coffers of Saddam Hussein's regime.

Labor's foreign affairs spokesman Kevin Rudd has called for the royal commission's terms of reference to be expanded, so it can investigate whether there was a Federal Government role in the affair.
Further down:

A United Nations investigation concluded money paid by wheat exporter AWB to a trucking company to transport its grain to Iraq went directly to Saddam's regime.
Good on the UN for looking into all this and exposing wrongdoers!

Oh, wait a moment, one forgot - the UN investigation was not into AWB but into the UN's own corrupt 'Oil For Food' program and it had to be forced to do it by the US.

No wonder they were reluctant. Like many mass murdering dictators, 'Saddam appears to have been a stickler for record-keeping' reported Therese Raphael in March 2004 and his records revealed that many high profile figures opposing the US-led liberation were on the take.

But there's no mention of any of this by the ABC or that the investigation found that 'Oil For Food' money was siphoned off to the benefit not just of Saddam and mates of the UN but even to Kofi Annan's own son.

The ABC's sins of omission present Annan and his organisation as white knights and corruption busters.

It's like a '30s Chicago newspaper hailing Al Capone for supporting poor widows without mentioning it was his cronies who widowed them.

-- Nick

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