July 21, 2006
One of the key figures in the Oil-for-food scandal, Tongsun Park, was convicted yesterday of money laundering. That name struck me as vaguely familiar, and indeed, he was at the center of the "Koreagate" bribery scandal in the late 1970s, as explained at opinionjournal.com by Claudia Rosett. She appeared on C-SPAN this morning, and aptly drew broader conclusions about the dysfunctional U.N. system. That is exactly why we need tough-talking, no-nonsense types like John Bolton to make sure the slimy weasels who cotton up to Kofi Annan are exposed and chased away.
In a perfect world, the United Nations could be counted on to reliably and impartially promote global security. In the messy, corrupt real world, unfortunately, that is not usually the case. One-world dreamers, mainly on the Left, are extremely reluctant to face up to the corrupt nature of the United Nations, which thereby tends to get worse for want of strong public scrutiny. That is why "containment" of Saddam Hussein was destined to erode over time, eventually crumbling: The incentives for cheaters -- some of whom speak French -- to exploit the "Oil-for-food" program was simply too great. Phony invoices and myriad other scams subverted that program's humanitarian purposes and ironically perpetuated the rule of a cruel dictator.
Sen. Joe Lieberman has long been the favorite Democrat of most Republicans, and has been repeatedly "buttered up" in recent months by Sean Hannity. The primary challenge by the wealthy Ned Lamont, running on a Howard Dean-esque antiwar platform has put the Democrat leaders in a very awkward position, and Sen. Chuck Schumer had to force a grim grin when queried about who the party would support when he appeared on Meet the Press last Sunday. All this can be seen as a preview of the November general elections, testing whether the hard left can win enough votes. Lieberman has lost ground in some polls in recent days, and says he will run as an independent if he loses the Democrat primary. Interestingly, he was just endorsed by Bill Clinton, whom Lieberman strongly criticized during the various scandals of the late 1990s. Forgive and forget: I have to admit, that was a pretty grand gesture by our former president. See Washington Post.