Tracking the UN can be like entering a bizarre alternative dimension — what former Ambassador John Bolton has called a “bubble,” or a time warp, on the East River. The UN, for its high inner circles, is a place so privileged that within its walls even its own rules don’t really apply. It is a sort of expanding neo-colonial empire of often murky projects and self-serving enthusiasms, operating across borders, with diplomatic immunity and almost no public accountability.
That seems to go double these days for the UN’s flagship agency, the UN Development Program (or UNDP), the star UN office of the North Korea Cash-for-Kim scandal, the global outfit that disburses more than $5 billion per year, some of that in cahoots with governments such as those of Burma, Iran, Syria, Zimbabwe, etc. … but somehow can’t bring itself to disclose just how all this money really gets spent.
Now, along comes a blog site dedicated to keeping an eye on the UNDP. I can’t vouch for everything that’s on it, but I’ve been reading it with interest, including the announcement Wednesday that it will be featuring a lineup of internal UNDP procurement documents, showing some of the ways in which your tax dollars get spent. Worth checking out: UNDP Watch