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Oil for Food

Yet another Paul Volcker potential conflict of interest

by Judi McLeod, Canadafreepress.com

January 7, 2005

Paul Volcker, head honcho of the "Independent" Inquiry Committee into the Oil-For-Food program, brings new meaning to the term, "conflict of interest".

Canada Free Press reported last December that Volcker held a seat on Power Corporation's International advisory board, that he is a member of David Rockefeller's Trilateral Commission and has Rockefeller's granddaughter, attorney Miranda Duncan on the Inquiry Committee's payroll. The Trilateral Commission is a super-elite cabal of some 300 powerbrokers with the proverbial finger in every pie that does not publish its membership on the Internet. And, of course it was Rockefeller money that built the UN's Manhattan headquarters.

Power Corporation is run by its founder, wealthy Canadian businessman Paul Desmarais Sr., who is a major shareholder and director in TotalFinaElf, the largest oil company in France, which has held tens of billions of dollars in contracts with the deposed regime of Saddam Hussein.

Unearthing Volcker's potential conflicts of interest goes all the way back to one Achmed Chalabi. Back in the days when Chalabi was still in the good books of L. Paul Bremer, Iraq's U.S. civilian administrator, he brought in the accounting firm of KPMG to investigate what was later to become the Oil-For-Food scandal.

Chalabi is now believed to be an Iranian spy.

KPMG is currently and was then the accounting firm for TotalFinaElf.

What has this to do, you might ask with Paul Volcker and potential conflicts of interest in heading up the Inquiry Committee into the Oil-For-Food scandal?

During the very public Arthur Andersen meltdown, they brought in a so-called White Knight. His name was Paul Volcker, and he came with the credentials of the former chairman of the United States Federal Reserve System.

Although no individual employee or partner was ever named, Andersen was indicted for obstructing justice for shredding Enron documents. In closing chapters, legions of the firm's A-list clientele switched over to KPMG.

KPMG, if you recall do the books for TotalFinaElf, the oil giant where Desmarais Sr. is a major shareholder and director. The same Desmarais who runs Power Corporation where Volcker held an advisory board seat.

KPMG was appointed to undertake a comprehensive audit into the Oil-For-Food program, which generated some $67 billion in revenue for Iraq between 1997 and 2002, according to the Heritage Foundation. KPMG began investigating in February 2004 on behalf of the Iraqi Ministry of Oil, the Central Bank of Iraq, the Finance and the Trade Ministry and the State Oil Marketing Association.

Even as KPMG accountants were sharpening their pencils, Bremer hired Ernst & Young to begin a separate investigation on behalf of his Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA).

According to Forbes Magazine, "a key difference between the contracts: The KPMG contract includes the recovery of the assets, while Ernst & Young's contract calls for recommendations on how the monies are to be recovered."

Forbes also points out that Volcker "lacks the necessary power to subpoena witnesses in an investigation, according to sources on Capitol Hill, policy experts and lobbyists."

Yet, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan handpicked Volcker to lead the Independent Inquiry Committee into the Oil-For-Food scandal.

Annan contended last Sunday that the Oil-For-Food program was a "significant success"–even though investigators are now saying that the UN operation will go down in history as the biggest financial scam of all time.

After Annan made his outrageous contention, Oil-For-Food seemed to disappeared from mainline news headlines.

Could it be that the fix is in and that the world's most famous dithering diplomat is taking marching orders from Washington to avoid serious problems for son, Kojo?


Canada Free Press founding editor Most recent by Judi McLeod is an award-winning journalist with 30 years experience in the print media. Her work has appeared on Newsmax.com, Drudge Report, Foxnews.com, Glenn Beck. Judi can be reached at: judi@canadafreepress.com


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