For Kofi Annan, that is: Reuters reports:
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan received an unusual standing ovation in the 191-nation General Assembly on Wednesday following calls for his resignation from conservative U.S. lawmakers.
“I interpret this long ovation as an acknowledgment of your actions and also an expression of confidence in yourself and also of the work you have undertaken at the helm of the United Nations,” Assembly President Jean Ping of Gabon said after the applause, which lasted nearly a minute.
“In a world that is held hostage to doubt, by confusion and at times to confrontation, you have always remained a point of reference as well as a source of wisdom and of inspiration for millions of individuals worldwide,” Ping said.
Annan briefed the General Assembly on the recently-issued report proposing various structural reforms to the organization. This was one of the highlights:
The world body must act on proposed reforms or accept the possibility of “a future cascade of nuclear proliferation” or genocides, Annan warned. “Will we again resign ourselves to watching passively until it is too late?”
Inasmuch as Annan has worked for the U.N. since 1962 and has been Secretary General since 1997, perhaps he could begin by explaining why the organization has, until now, “resigned itself to watching passively until it is too late.”
No hard questions will be coming from Reuters, however. The left-leaning news service concludes its account with a bizarre misprepresentation of the oil for food scandal:
The humanitarian program was launched in December 1996 and continued until last year to allow Iraq to supply nonmilitary goods to civilians suffering under U.N. sanctions imposed in 1990 after Baghdad’s troops invaded Kuwait.
Most of the corruption revealed so far involves illegal transfers or smuggling of oil, which the Security Council, including the United States, knew about and controlled. But investigations, including one set up by Annan, are also looking into whether U.N. employees received bribes from Iraq and how much U.N. staff knew about inflated contracts.
“[T]he Security Council, including the United States, knew about and controlled” “illegal transfers or smuggling of oil”? Huh? If the Security Council “controlled” Saddam’s smuggling efforts and fraudulent oil transfers, the organization is even more corrupt than we thought. I assume the only reason why Reuters indulged in that flight of fancy was to work the United States in as part of the Security Council.