Skip to comments.Ex-senator linked to oil-for-food claims (Bob Torricelli)
Posted on 05/18/2006 5:37:16 PM PDT by wjersey
The US Senate is looking into allegations that a former US senator urged Baghdad to give a US company lucrative contracts under the much-criticised United Nations oil-for-food programme.
This is the first time that a leading US lawmaker has been linked to the controversial UN programme, whose shortcomings have been an important element of the Bush administration's critique of the UN.
The investigation involves one of the most vivid figures in US east coast politics, former senator Robert Torricelli, a New Jersey Democrat who was forced to pull out of the 2002 election after being "severely admonished" by the Senate ethics committee for accepting expensive gifts from David Chang, a campaign contributor. Mr Chang, a Korean-American businessman, was found guilty in 2002 of conspiring to violate federal campaign laws and was jailed for 15 months.
Senator Norm Coleman, the Republican chairman of the US Senate permanent sub-committee on investigations, said: "We take these allegations seriously and will continue to investigate in a bipartisan manner allegations of wrongdoing under the oil-for-food programme. We have investigated the illicit conduct of politicians in Russia, France, and the UK. We have a similar interest in preserving the institutional integrity of the US Senate, so we take these allegations regarding former Senator Torricelli seriously and will continue our investigation into them and will refer our findings to the appropriate agencies." The British, French and Russian politicians investigated by the subcommittee deny the allegations.
The allegations are based on Iraqi documents, including diplomatic cables, retrieved after the fall of Saddam Hussein, Iraq's former president.
(Excerpt) Read more at msnbc.msn.com ...
According to the same Iraqi document, Mr Torricelli met Mr Hamdoun again two days later. At that meeting, Mr Torricelli said that since their previous conversation he had spoken with Edward Gnehm, the deputy US representative to the UN, who was leading negotiations with Iraq about the oil-for-food programme.
On June 22, according to the same document, Mr Torricelli allegedly met Mr Hamdoun again. Mr Torricelli told him he had heard that the Iraqis might not give US companies any contracts and advised him that this would be a mistake. Mr Torricelli told Mr Hamdoun that he expected to win a US Senate seat in the November election (as he later did), and said that Bright and Bright was important to him and his election campaign and that he hoped that the company would receive contracts from Iraq.
According to the Iraqi document, Bright and Bright initially asked for 60 per cent of Iraq's oil contracts and a discount of $1.50 a barrel. Then on June 11 1996, a Bright and Bright executive wrote to Mr Hamdoun asking for government contracts worth as much as $300m in the first 90 days of the oil-for-food programme. In return, he said Bright and Bright would continue to support the normalisation of relations between the US and Iraq.
With Lautencadaver, the 'Rats have taken the "Dead Men Vote" strategery to a whole new level.
Those Republicans and their culture of corruptions, why...what? Another Democrat?
I just hope something comes of this. He's been slippery, thus far.
Not sure .. but I'll betcha there are a few phone calls going on about this within the Dem Ranks
the DOJ doesn't strike me as being too aggressive rooting out cases of political corruption by Dems. its the "new tone" you know.
Funny ain't it
I've believed for a long time that this oil-for-food scandal will end up having more layers to it than an onion. The news of the Europeans and even UN officials being involved came out pretty quickly, but the story remains mysteriously ignored in this country. I wouldn't be at all surprised if there were some number of Americans (government and/or private citizens) involved as well.
Whoops, that other link got posted wrong...
This should surprise......no one!
And Nancy Pelosi has the nerve to call the GOP the "Culture of Corruption"
Chang similarly sought the good graces of C. Kenneth Quinones, a now-retired official who at one time had been the North Korean Desk Officer at the State Department. Chang sought help with business prospects in North Korea in 1995-96, specifically support for his company becoming project coordinator for the construction of light-water nuclear reactors, and obtaining a contract to recover the remains of POWs from the North Koreans. Chang also pursued the repayment of debts from North Korea and release of frozen assets there. Chang gave Quinones an Acura Legend, found a job for one daughter and paid $65,000 toward another's daughter Stanford tuition. Quinones, in contrast with Torricelli, pled guilty to violations of government conflict of interest laws in August 2001.
You're such a GOOD researcher. This gives us HOPE!
The Torch (Toricelli) and The Mummy (Lautenberg) are my Freeper name sakes.
Amidst Growing Scandals, Even Supporters Wonder:
Has The Clock Run Out on Robert Torricelli?