The Iraqi newspaper al-Mada has obtained documents from the Iraqi oil ministry that purport to identify people who were given contracts to trade in oil under the U.N.’s oil-for-palaces program. Al-Mada has printed a list of the recipients. The Telegraph has the story:
Saddam Hussein bribed his way around the world, buying the support of presidents, ministers, legislators, political parties and even Christian churches, according to documents published in Iraq. The list of those who allegedly benefited from Saddam’s largesse spans 46 countries.
The 270 individuals and organisations alleged to be in his pay included the sons of a serving Arab president, Arab ministers, a prominent Indonesian leader, the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, the party led by the Russian nationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky and even the Russian Orthodox Church.
Here is a translation of the list, courtesy of Tim Blair. It includes a lot of interesting names. George Galloway, the Labour MP who led the British anti-war movement, is on it six times. France’s former Interior Minister, Charles Pasqua, is on the list; he says he is innocent, but wouldn’t put it past others to have been on Saddam’s payroll. Suharto’s daughter got oil money, as did the Palestinian Liberation Organization. A number of socialist and Communist organizations around the world got Saddam’s oil money, but so did the Russian Orthodox Church. And in Italy, one “Father Benjamin.” I assume this doesn’t explain the Vatican’s opposition to the war. And what do you suppose it means that “media” in Switzerland got oil money?
I assume this is just the smallest tip of a very large iceberg, and there is much more to come along the same lines.