Thursday, April 22, 2004

# Posted 2:49 PM by Patrick Belton  

BRIBE-TAKING SCANDAL AT THE UN: Reports have surfaced that three principal UN officials, including the undersecretary general, accepted millions of dollars' worth of bribes from Saddam between 1997 and 2002, in return for permitting Saddam to in turn make billions of dollars illicitly from the UN's oil-for-food programme.

This unprecedented amount of UN corruption is being referred to as "Kofigate," and is receiving coverage from across the spectrum (see Telegraph, Independent). If there's one edifying part to this entire sordid spectacle, it's that the story was initially broken by an independent Iraqi paper, Al Mada - showing that when it's allowed the safety to follow a story, the Iraqi Quatrieme Etat can hold its own with the Fourth Estates of the big boys.
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