After reviewing the latest Volcker Report on the UN’s Oil-for-food scam, UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has cleared his former Chief of Staff of any wrongdoing for shredding documents related to the scam. Well, I guess that settles it then.

After reading the headline “Annan clears former Chief of Staff of wrongdoing”, I fully expected it to be followed by, “In a related story, Willie Sutton’s investigation concludes bank has ‘no money missing’.”

If you’re not very familiar with the United Nations’ “Oil-for-Food” program, it was a scam… I mean, program, that began in 1996, and permitted Saddam Hussein to sell oil, provided that the revenue went for food, medicine and other necessities. It was a deal between the world’s largest bureaucracy and one of the planet’s most crooked and ruthless dictators. What could possibly go wrong?

So now we find out, with a shock value equal to the one that hit us this morning when the sun rose in the east, that Hussein was skimming money off the top, and bottom for that matter. Skimming? More like building a dam. The General Accounting Office estimates that Hussein’s regime netted over $10 billion.

The psychotic-yet-most-entrepreneurial mustachioed one who had a destiny with a spider hole was, with a lot of help, inflating prices on humanitarian imports, which allowed him to sell that much more oil and keep the extra for himself and whoever else was involved. High markups, high profits and skimming – Iraq had become a 172,000 square mile jewelry store run by Jimmy Hoffa.

Annan of course knew nothing of this, and apparently neither did his former Chief of Staff, who just happened to shred some of those documents. How do we know of their innocence? Annan said so. Whew… I’m glad that’s over!

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