One in the many reasons to send the United Nations packing

It’s corrupt from top to bottom and the only people who get punished are those who expose it:

A U.N. whistleblower who was awarded a fraction of the damages he says he suffered at the hands of the United Nations urged Washington on Monday to withhold 15 percent of the U.S. contribution to the world body in accordance with U.S. law.

American James Wasserstrom was last month awarded 2 percent of the $3.2 million he wanted by a tribunal that found U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the U.N. Ethics Office failed to properly review claims he suffered retaliation for alleging U.N. corruption in Kosovo.

According to Section 7049(a) of the 2012 U.S. Consolidated Appropriations Act, the United States is required to withhold 15 percent of its contribution to any U.N. agency if the secretary of state determines that it is not implementing “best practices for the protection of whistleblowers from retaliation.”

(…)

Wasserstrom complained in 2007 to the Ethics Office that he suffered retaliation for reporting alleged misconduct while head of the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Oversight of Publicly Owned Enterprises in Kosovo.

He had told the United Nations he was concerned about corporate governance in Kosovo and alleged the possibility of a kickback scheme tied to a proposed power plant and mine that involved top politicians and senior U.N. officials.

Instead of being protected as a whistleblower, Wasserstrom claimed he suffered retaliation, which started with his U.N. public utility watchdog office in Kosovo being shut down and his U.N. contract not being renewed.

Although Wasserstrom eventually won his case, he was only awarded $65,000, despite the fact that he says his legal fees, lost wages and other financial damage incurred amounted to well over $2 million.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for Secretary John “Global Test” Kerry to invoke this law to protect a wronged American; relations with the world body that represents the voice of the international community are too important, you see. (1) More likely, as Rick Moran acidly observes, Kerry will use the UN appeal process as a dodge to avoid doing anything that might upset things. And, I think, in the hope that this pesky little prole will stop bothering his betters with minor matters.

There was a time when, if an American was ill-treated by a foreign regime, the government would try to find a solution and, if that didn’t work, would figuratively go punch the offending government in the gut and keep doing it until they recognized their diplomatic obligations. See, for example, the Barbary Pirates and the Mexican War. (2)

Now, while we can’t declare war on the United Nations, cutting our contribution by 15% would also be an effective gut-punch, one that would command attention and, I bet, meet with wide public approval. (Just “sequester” it…) But, cynical me, I don’t expect this administration headed by  “citizens of the world” to do anything to help Mr. Wasserstrom.

That might make the next cocktail party in New York just too uncomfortable.

Footnotes:
(1) If you detect a note or two (or several thousand) of sarcasm and cynicism, your senses are not deceiving you.
(2) Yes, I’m grossly oversimplifying things, but the shabby treatment of Americans was among the causes of war in each case, as well as others.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)

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