Unraveling the U.N. Oil-for-Food Scandal

Published September 25, 2004

| FoxNews.com

What started as a plan to get humanitarian aid to Iraqis living under Saddam Hussein's regime became what critics call a multi-billion dollar boondoggle: It's the Oil-for-Food (search) program that was run by the United Nations from late 1996 to last year.

For details about how the program operated as well as the investigations taking place to determine what happened to the money, read through this series of recent FOXNews.com articles.

Click on the highlighted headlines below to read the full stories.

Oil-for-Food Scandal Draws Scrutiny to U.N.

The roots of the Oil-for-Food scandal date back to 1991, when a U.N.-backed and U.S.-led coalition expelled Saddam from Kuwait following his hostile takeover of the neighboring country. Although Saddam lost the war, he walked away with important victories — he got to stay in power in Iraq and he ultimately got to pocket millions if not billions of dollars.

Read more here.

Early Warning Not Heeded on Oil-for-Food

The United Nations first tried a series of sanctions to make Saddam bend to its will following the successful 1991 war to oust him from Kuwait. But then it attempted to find a way for Iraqi citizens to get needed medicine and other supplies through the sale of Iraqi oil — an approach that failed.

Read more here.

Possible Saddam-Al Qaeda Link Seen in Oil-for-Food

Buried in some of the United Nations' own confidential documents are clues that a link could have existed between Saddam and the Al Qaeda terror group — clues leading to a locked door in a Swiss lakeside resort.

Read more here.

Did Terrorists Benefit From Oil-for-Food?

U.S. Treasury officials have already identified 11 front companies and nearly 200 Iraqi-controlled firms that they suspect were part of Saddam's secret and illegal network. And they say that's only the tip of the iceberg.

Read more here.

Iraqi People Suffered Under Oil-for-Food

In the Saddam era, Baghdad's Al Rashid Hotel was the main stop on the Oil-for-Food tour. Regime-friendly types would stay there when visiting Baghdad. They'd stop and say hello to Saddam or a crony, snag a voucher good for a load of Iraqi crude and conveniently enough, there were oil traders in the lobby of that hotel who could turn those vouchers into cash.

Read more here.

Watching the U.N. Oil-for-Food Watchdog

The Al Mada weekly in Iraq published a list of the names of some 270 people and organizations that purportedly received Oil-for-Food vouchers from Saddam. One of those names was the same as the last name of the U.N. official who ran the Oil-for-Food program.

Read more here.

Some of the above stories were originally seen on FOX News' "Breaking Point."

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/story/2004/09/25/unraveling-un-oil-for-food-scandal