Saturday 29th of January 2022

spooks in baghdad .....

AWB executives
'expected to spy on Iraqis' 

It is claimed AWB executives were
asked to gather intelligence for the Federal Government in the lead-up to the
war in Iraq.

The Cole inquiry is examining
allegations AWB was paying kickbacks to the regime of Saddam Hussein, in contravention
of United Nations sanctions.

Dr Carl Ungerer is a former
analyst with the Office of National Assessments.

In 2002, he was working as a
national security adviser to former federal Labor leader Simon Crean.

He has told ABC TV's The 7:30
, at that time he met with senior AWB executives who complained about
being expected to spy on the Iraqis.

"They were concerned that
they were being sort of pushed to do things that was not necessarily within their
bailiwick to do," he said.

"Gather information, find
out what was going on inside the country, all those sorts of basic information gathering
exercises that you would want to know should you be heading towards some sort
of military clash."

sabbatical .....

And on that note, Gus will be taking a well-earned sabbatical for the rest of the week ....

Good one Gus. 

Classified pig's fart memorandum to get on with it

From the ABC

Downer gagged officials in AWB probe: Rudd
The Federal Opposition has accused the Foreign Affairs Minister of trying to gag officials and say he has acted disgracefully in relation to the AWB scandal.

Labor's Kevin Rudd says the Australian people have been grossly misled after the Cole inquiry heard that the Government did not fully co-operate with the United Nations investigation into the oil-for-food scandal.

"At the end of last year, Mr Howard told Parliament that the Government had provided full co-operation and full documentation to the Volcker inquiry," Mr Rudd said.

"Both of those statements by the Prime Minister were untrue.

"Downer needs to front the commission to explain what he knew, when he knew it and why he failed to act."

The Cole inquiry also heard that Mr Downer would not allow UN officials to interview Australian officials or access classified messages.

Mr Downer says the Opposition should apologise for accusing the Government of misleading the Australian people over the AWB scandal.

He says claims that the Government did not initially co-operate with the United Nations inquiry into the Iraqi oil-for-food scandal are untrue.

Mr Downer says information was released after he heard of complaints from the head of the inquiry Paul Volcker.

"I instructed the department to get on with it," he said.

"They negotiated a memorandum of understanding with the United Nations, which provided for the protection of our classified material and there was full co-operation."

Read more at the ABC