The Logic Lifeline

A logical approach to sorting out world events. Where logic, opinion and speculation are combined to produce a reasoned, but entertaining reading experience. The unofficial hometown conservative blog of Woodridge, Il

Monday, June 19, 2006

Pull the plug on UN funding until Kofi steps down

I'm sure it has happened, but in my memory I cannot recall Kofi Annan ever saying anything that can be labeled "intelligent". If any readers of this post have any intelligent statements from Kofi, I would be interested in reading them (no, simple criticism of Bush does not count). To me every time I see him talking I think of some muppet on Sesame Street. Then he just mumbles out some kind of statement and it is like some fly buzzing in your ear. There is nothing to grasp onto that ever warrants or justifies the high position that he has been granted. He is truly at best an international embarrassment.

The recent opportunity for Kofi to embarrass himself over is the flap over his deputy Mark Malloch Brown. This flap is described by Reuters:
U.S.-U.N. tensions flared anew last week after U.N. Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch Brown accused the George W. Bush administration of keeping its extensive reliance on the United Nations "a secret in Middle America" because working with the world body was "not perceived to be good politics at home."
Brown also included jabs against some talk radio personalities in his comments including Rush Limbaugh. He seemed to be chaffing against the spotlight that talk radio and conservative blogs shine on the UN. Where the rest of the world seems to set the threshold of satisfaction with the UN if they every now and then belch out a criticism of the US and George Bush; the conservative media asks quite a bit more for the UN to justify its existence.

Actually, the notion that the US is reliant on the UN is quite laughable. Bush '41 set a precedent of working through the UN and Clinton practically sold out our sovereignty to the place. Bush '43 leans more toward his father's policy which is more of a "let's be a team player" mentality. In other words, neither Bush nor the US needs the UN (any more than a dog needs a tick) but he bends over backwards to cooperate with this corrupt and backwards institution to show goodwill to the rest of the world. The US bears much of cost of the UN including hosting the place. We cover much of the security of the UN. We must deal with the full brunt of their diplomatic immunity with crimes ranging from simple traffic violations to rape and murder. Worst of all we must put up with their ingratitude and arrogance as they both criticize and work against our interests while enjoying the benefits of our funds and our land.

John Bolton (who continues to impress me with every word out of his mouth) rightly demands that Kofi press his deputy to withdraw his rude comments. This is no simple childish reaction to being insulted. The UN takes full advantage of the US' hospitality and then takes every opportunity to undercut and weaken us. Bolton is absolutely correct to draw a line and say "No more". What other permanent member of the Security Council is ever singled out for such criticism? So when Kofi sticks by his deputy "Fife" Bolton lays down the gauntlet and claims that funding will be withheld. If we cannot get past the UN's inebriation at criticizing the US, then the entire idea of a UN is an exercise in futility and should be scrapped.

So now the UN faces a severe budget crisis. Instead of doing the right thing what does Kofi say:
"For someone to say that 'because you have not reformed to my satisfaction I am going to pull the plug and stop all the activities,' it is going to be a very hard sell for all the member states to swallow and rightly so." Annan added.
What reform? Kofi is dragging out reform at a snail's pace. You would think with his term ending soon that he would want to pick up the pace. Reform takes tough words and tough actions to back them up. Kofi has never said a tough word in his term (unless it is against the US). The fact is that Kofi has been at the helm during throughout this rash of corruption and unrestrained misdeeds. He has either been heavily involved or grossly absent and irresponsible having failed to prevent it. Kofi needs to go. Bolton backed by the administration needs to go beyond demanding Brown to apologize. They need to demand that Kofi step down or no funds. If that does not work, then we can ask the UN to pack their bags and move somewhere else. Maybe if the UN were moved to a country in missle range of Iran and North Korea, we might actually see some effective action on that front as well.


  • At 3:08 PM, Blogger SkyePuppy said…

    My vote is for moving the UN to Harare, Zimbabwe. But if that's too far for Iran to reach, then my second choice is Khartoum, Sudan. Iran shouldn't have a problem blowing up Khartoum.

    North Korea is expected to be able to reach the US soon, so I doubt Africa would be a problem for them.

    Great post! Getting Kofi to quit is a much better idea than just making Brown apologize.

  • At 8:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The Utter Dysfunction of the United Nations

    It will take five minutes to read this and another five minutes to take action, proposed below. Please don’t ignore this, and please send it to friends and family. Your action could literally change the world.

    Recently Mark Malloch Brown, deputy Secretary General of the United Nations, said that "Middle America" did not know how the US is constructively engaged with the UN because of UN detractors and too much unchecked UN-bashing and stereotyping over too many years. Friends, the UN deserves to be bashed and bashed hard.

    Please allow us to give you a glimpse into how the United Nations is run:

    Hirings and promotions routinely violate UN rules (and are illegal under most national laws) and revolve around patronage and whom one knows rather than professional qualifications. Poorly performing managers are simply moved into different management slots while others are placed in senior positions solely because of their nationality, or because of favors owed to them by their supervisors or colleagues.

    Salaries for UN employees are free of taxes and come with six weeks vacation, 11 holidays, 10 sick days that are often used as vacation, plus 4 weeks of “home leave”, rental and housing grants to supplement an already generous salary (we all make an average of $7,000-$10,000 a month tax free), a pension at 8% of salary times years of service that can be cashed out tax free at any time, and educational subsidies for children of UN employees. Many also participate in an "alternative work schedule" in which they get every other Friday off. But don't even try to apply. Your application will not be acknowledged nor will you ever get invited for a job interview. You must know someone to work at the UN (or worse, sleep with them).

    Several of us have advanced degrees in management and have been trained to manage large public organizations, yet we are blocked from advancing by bureaucrats in their 50s with no management training, education, or experience - only sitting in their chairs because they are friends with someone in a higher position. We threaten them because they know they are there based only on their connections.

    And there is a profound lack of accountability within the UN regarding budget and resource allocation, resulting in loss of millions upon millions each year through skimming, graft and corruption. Simple procurement that would normally take five minutes using modern technology systems takes 2-3 months in the UN. And many United Nations Development Program country offices pay "local experts" outrageously high sums of money for products of dubious quality. Such contracts would never be made by other international aid agencies such as USAID that have much stronger internal controls and oversight.

    We are all familiar with outrageous examples of scandals within the UN system, and yet time and again the scandal is covered up. In fact, a recent article on internal management in the Financial Times cited a UN-commissioned report released in 1994 that was remarkably damning and yet, as the article noted, nothing has changed which has led to this present crisis of credibility at the UN.

    Despite its dysfunction, if the UN were actually making a difference, many would mutter to themselves but the UN deserves its strongest bashing because of its profound inability to respond to genocide, war, famine, natural disasters, and corruption.

    Kofi Annan, current head of the United Nations who ironically lives in a mansion in New York worth about $10 million, was head of peacekeeping operations in 1994 in Rwanda when 800,000 people died. In 2004, he said "I believed at that time that I was doing my best" despite the fact that he held back UN troops from intervening to settle the conflict and declined to provide more logistic and material support to stop the slaughter.

    And don't forget that ten years ago thousands of Bosnian Muslims were murdered by the Serb militias who were in a UN protected “safe haven” with hundreds of UN soldiers assigned to defend them. Yet the UN stood by while the entire adult and teenage male population was systematically butchered.

    Kofi Annan was unable to stop mismanagement of the Oil-for-Food Program that allowed Saddam Hussein's regime to embezzle $4.4 billion through pricing irregularities and an additional $5.7 billion through illegal oil smuggling. And for several years Kofi's son Kojo received payments from the Swiss company Cotecna (while not even working there!), which won a lucrative contract under the UN Oil for Food program.

    Kofi Annan protected Ruud Lubbers, UN High Commissioner for Refugees, against a report that found him guilty of sexual harassment by declaring him innocent. This created a global protest against Annan, resulting in Lubbers being eventually forced to resign, not because of his own egregious actions, but because he was starting to adversely impact Annan’s public image. By the way, Annan’s image is propped up around the world thanks to an $85 million dollar annual “communications” budget. What other modern corporation has two directors of communication like the UN doe - one for the UN “Secretariat” and one for the Secretary General.

    Kofi Annan accepted a $500,000 prize from the ruler of Dubai, courtesy of a judges' panel full of U.N. cronies, one member of which Annan then appointed to a high U.N. job! By the way, Annan was advised to take the prize money by Malloch Brown who rents a home in Westchester County from his friend George Soros for $12,000 a month with a $287,087 annual salary.

    Kofi Annan remains in power despite continuing sexual abuse scandals by UN peacekeepers. A 2005 internal UN investigation found that sexual abuse and forced pregnancies has been reported in at least five countries where UN peacekeepers have been deployed including the Congo, Haiti, Burundi, Cote d'Ivoire, and Liberia.

    And Kofi Annan remains in power while genocide continues in Darfur, while Zimbabwe tailspins into despotism, while up to a third of the population of some African countries will die from AIDS, while government corruption keeps the poorest countries in starkest poverty, and while the U.N. Human Rights Council includes repressive non-democratic states such as Cuba, China, Russia, and Saudi Arabia.

    Kofi Annan and Mark Malloch Brown arrogantly ignore the fact that the quality of life of several of us has come close to being destroyed because of the mismanagement, abuse, fraud and corruption.

    Most who work for the UN are so used to its dysfunctionality that they have NO idea how sick the organization is or they are unwilling to come forward because UN labor laws and protections are abysmal. Coming forward to a kangaroo court will only result in firing or worse. Please refer to the recent report prepared by UK Barrister and Human Rights QC Geoffrey Robertson on behalf of UN Staff, which highlights the gross deficiencies of worker protections at the UN at - and read about so many more abuses at

    Adding insult to injury, the newly created OIOS (the new "independent" internal oversight panel established to "reform" the UN) has been strong-armed by Malloch Brown and is not independent because its meager budget comes directly from the UN, equal to about one-half of Annan’s annual PR budget! Thus all are dissuaded from within the UN from coming forward.

    And what really happened at UNDP, the organization that Malloch Brown used to “lead”? Why would Malloch Brown leave his influential post as head of UNDP to spend a year defending the scandals swirling around Kofi Annan and then announce that he would resign when Kofi leaves at the end of this year? Because he royally mismanaged UNDP. Everyone at UNDP knows this but is too scared to share the details of what happened for fear of retaliation by Brown. But ask UNDP Country Directors and UNDP Practice Managers what happened under King Mark's reign and you will get a completely different picture of his mismanagement skills and bombastic ways.

    Another example, in order to uphold their political neutrality, UN employees are expressly barred from political participation and yet UNDP employee Justin Leites was allowed to campaign for U.S. Presidential candidate John Kerry - with MMB's approval!

    As the walls literally crumble down around them, those who work for the UN and citizens who believe in the founding principles of the UN have no understanding how bad it really is. Unfortunately, we encourage young people who are seeking a career in international affairs to avoid the United Nations at all costs. We wish there would come a day when we would no longer make this recommendation.

    Of course the senior leadership of the UN try to hide the profound problems of the UN but shame on them for saying that Americans don't know or understand how the US is engaged with the UN. If you and everyone in Middle America truly understood what ails the UN, the US, which funds $3.3 billion annually or 22% of the entire UN budget, would shut off the money spigot yesterday.

    And remember - the talk of “reforming the UN” has gone on for over a DECADE. In sum, the UN should be shuttered, allowing a brand new organization to emerge because the current UN is broken beyond repair.

    Not much has changed since the UN was founded 60 years ago. The UN could have done much, much better in making the word a better place.

    Make no mistake. This is about the future of YOUR world – a world of some 191 countries desperate for a better life for all their citizens. Don't let self-interested, incompetent middle-aged bureaucrat hacks – most raised and educated under dictatorships - determine the future of OUR world.

    Please contact your two Senators and your representative to the House of Representatives by clicking here: Ask your Senators and Congressman to stop discussing "reform" of the UN. Ask your Senators and Congressman to create a NEW organization that can lead the world well into the 21st Century.

    This is NOT a Democrats vs. Republicans debate. All Democrats and all Republicans should be able to easily agree that if deep, deep reform is not possible, the UN should be closed and a new organization should be created to truly make the world a better place.

    This is a non-partisan issue! Please share this with family and friends and post it on your favorite blogs.

    For more information, please contact Edward Patrick Flaherty at who represents UN employees including our views here.

    Written by a concerned group of current and former UN employees.

  • At 8:51 AM, Blogger All_I_Can_Stands said…

    Skyepuppy, there are a lot of places that would be in reach of the bombs. I think that being safely under the wing of the US causes some problems in their thinking and hampers good decision making.


    Thanks for the expose. It would be great if you could source it for credibility. I have seen many of these items concerning Kofi and know he is a rat. The world seems to think that the function of the UN is to stick it to the US. As long as Kofi does that, the world will love him and let him by with his corruption and incompetence.


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