Essays and Reports

The oil-for-food scandal: next steps for Congress

by Nile Gardiner, James Phillips and James Dean, the Heritage Foundation
June 30, 2004

The oil-for-food fraud is potentially the biggest scandal in the history of the United Nations and one of the greatest financial scandals of modern times. Under intense pressure from Congress, the United Nations established its own “independent” commission of inquiry into the U.N.’s handling of the oil-for-food program, but the inquiry bears all the hallmarks of an elaborate paper tiger. The commission lacks subpoena power and cannot force the cooperation of U.N. member states. It has also been dogged by allegations of interference by U.N. officials and serious doubts exist as to whether the inquiry will deliver substantial results.

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