Galloway, final chapter. The end.

Galloway, final chapter. The end.
October 27th, 2005  
Italian Guy

Topic: Galloway, final chapter. The end.

Galloway, final chapter. The end.
That old friend of the world's dictators is in truoble, anyone wanna help him?

US Senate 'finds Iraq oil cash in Galloway's wife's bank account'
From James Bone in New York and David Charter in Washington

GEORGE GALLOWAY faces possible criminal charges after a US Senate investigation tracked $150,000 (£85,000) in Iraqi oil money to his wife’s bank account in Jordan.
The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations will refer the Respect Party MP for possible prosecution after concluding that he gave “false and misleading” testimony at his appearance before the panel in May.

The sub-committee claimed that, through intermediaries, Mr Galloway and the Mariam Appeal were granted eight allocations of Iraqi crude oil totalling 23 million barrels from 1999 to 2003.

It will also forward the new information to British authorities, saying it raised questions about Mr Galloway’s financial disclosure and the payment of illegal kickbacks to Iraq. “We have what we would call the smoking gun,” said Senator Norm Coleman, the sub-committee’s Republican chairman.

The sub-committee’s report, released today, was provoked by Mr Galloway’s clash with the senators — which he turned into a book entitled Mr Galloway goes to Washington. In that encounter, the anti-war MP vehemently denied receiving oil allocations from Iraq.

But the report provides bank account details tracking payments from an oil company through a Jordanian middleman to Mr Galloway’s nowestranged wife, Amineh Abu- Zayyad, and his Mariam Appeal fund.

“Galloway was anything but straight with the Congress. He was anything but straight with the American people. There was a lot of bombast. There was a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing,” Senator Coleman said. “We take very seriously the importance of testifying honestly before this committee . . .” he said. “We will forward matters relating to Galloway’s false and misleading statements to the proper authorities here and in Great Britain.”

A Senate aide said that Mr Galloway would be referred to the Justice Department for investigation of possible perjury, false statement and obstruction of a congressional proceeding — all “Class A” felonies carrying a sentence of up to five years and a $250,000 fine.

The report says the Jordanian middleman Fawaz Zureikat, a close friend of Mr Galloway and his representative in Baghdad, funnelled $150,000 from Iraqi oil sales to Mr Galloway’s wife and at least $446,000 to the Mariam Appeal. On the same day Mr Zureikat also paid $15,666 to Ron McKay, Mr Galloway’s spokesman. Mr McKay could not be contacted for comment last night.

The saga dates back to Mr Galloway’s Big Ben to Baghdad tour in September 1999 when he took a red double-decker bus to Iraq. An anonymous “oil trader 1” told the Senate investigators that Mr Galloway asked him at the Rashid Hotel, during the tour, how to translate oil allocations into money.

Another individual, known as “oil trader 2”, told the investigators that he learnt in summer 2000 that the Iraqi Government had granted an allocation of oil to someone represented by Mr Zureikat. Oil trader 2 said: “At that time I knew that the individual that Zureikat represented was a British official named George Galloway.”

He added: “Officials of the Iraqi State Oil Marketing Organisation confirmed to me that Mr Zureikat represented Mr Galloway in the sale of Galloway’s allocations of Iraqi crude oil.”

He also told investigators: “The fact that Mr Zureikat represented Mr Galloway with respect to oil allocations and other business in Iraq was common knowledge, understood by many oil traders with whom I had regular contact.”

The investigators spoke to Tariq Aziz, the former Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq, who told them that Mr Galloway asked him for political funding in allocations in the name of Mr Zureikat. The Senate report shows that Mr Zureikat received $740,000 from Taurus Petroleum on July 27, 2000, as commission for its purchase of 2,645,068 barrels of oil.

The report then reproduces money-transfer documents from Citibank showing that Mr Zureikat sent Mr Galloway’s wife $150,000 on August 3, 2000. They conclude that the amount was “largely” Oil-for-Food money because Mr Zureikat’s account contained $848,683 at the time, only $38,000 of which did not come from the programme.

Mr Galloway accused Senator Coleman last night of using congressional privilege to attack and smear him.

He said: “I’ve already comprehensively dealt with these allegations — under oath in the High Court and the US Senate — to the Charity Commission and in innumerable media inquiries.”


Mr Galloway’s wife, Dr Amineh Abi-Zayyad, received $150,000 from Oil-for-Food allocations

Mr Galloway’s charity, the Mariam Appeal, received $446,000 from Oil-for-Food allocations

A Jordanian middleman and friend of Mr Galloway, Fawaz Zureikat, obtained the money

Tariq Aziz, Iraq’s former deputy Prime Minister, testified that Mr Galloway asked for oil allocations

Mr Galloway “knowingly made false or misleading statements under oath” at the Senate committee in May


And Belmont comments:

Playing to the Galloway

On May 23, 2005, while newspapers were waxing delirious over the rhetorical drubbing that George Galloway was apparently administering to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, the Belmont Club on the old site noted something peculiar about the apparent passivity of the Senators towards Galloway's barbs.

The really striking thing about the Galloway's testimony as transcribed by the Information Clearing House is how the Senators and the Member of Parliament for Bethnal Green and Bow were pursuing a non-collision course. Galloway had come to score press and public relations points at which, by all accounts, he was successful at doing. But Senator Coleman and Levin seemed totally uninterested in responding to Galloway's sharp political jibes. It was almost as if the Senators were deaf to his political posturing. Instead, they focused exclusively and repeatedly on two things: Galloway's relationship with Fawaz Zureikat and Tariq Aziz. Zureikat was a board member of Galloway's Mariam foundation who is also implicated in the Oil For Food deals. Tariq Aziz was Saddam's vice president.

During his testimony Senator Coleman asked this seemingly innocuous question of Galloway about his relationship with Fawaz Zureikat.

SEN. COLEMAN: If I can get back to Mr. Zureikat one more time. Do you recall a time when he specifically -- when you had a conversation with him about oil dealings in Iraq?

GALLOWAY: I have already answered that question. I can assure you, Mr. Zureikat never gave me a penny from an oil deal, from a cake deal, from a bread deal, or from any deal. He donated money to our campaign, which we publicly brandished on all of our literature, along with the other donors to the campaign.

SEN. COLEMAN: Again, Mr. Galloway, a simple question. I'm looking for either a yes or no. Did you ever have a conversation with Mr. Zureikat where he informed you that he had oil dealings with Iraq, yes or no?

GALLOWAY: Not before this Daily Telegraph report, no. ...

SEN. CARL LEVIN (D): Thank you, Mr. Galloway.

Later, it was the turn of Senator Levin to ask these mild-mannered questions of the firebrand from Bethnal Green and Bow about his dealings with Tariq Aziz. He was shortly followed by Senator Coleman who asked the same question but with different emphasis.

SEN. LEVIN: ... I wanted just to ask you about Tariq Aziz.


SEN. LEVIN: Tariq Aziz. You've indicated you, you--who you didn't talk to and who you did talk to. Did you have conversations with Tariq Aziz about the award of oil allocations? That's my question.


SEN. LEVIN: Thank you. I'm done. Thank you.

SEN. COLEMAN: Just one follow-up on the Tariq Aziz question. How often did you uh ... Can you describe the relation with Tariq Aziz?

GALLOWAY: Friendly.

SEN. COLEMAN: How often did you meet him?

GALLOWAY: Many times.

SEN. COLEMAN: Can you give an estimate of that?

GALLOWAY: No. Many times.

SEN. COLEMAN: Is it more than five?

GALLOWAY: Yes, sir.

SEN. COLEMAN: More than ten?


SEN. COLEMAN: Fifteen? Around fifteen?

GALLOWAY: Well, we're getting nearer, but I haven't counted. But many times. I'm saying to you "Many times," and I'm saying to you that I was friendly with him.

SEN. COLEMAN: And you describe him as "a very dear friend"?

GALLOWAY: I think you've quoted me as saying "a dear, dear friend." I don't often use the double adjective, but--

SEN. COLEMAN: --I was looking into your heart on that.--

GALLOWAY: --but "friend" I have no problem with. Senator, just before you go on--I do hope that you'll avail yourself of this dossier that I have produced. And I am really speaking through you to Senator Levin. This is what I have said about Saddam Hussein.

SEN. COLEMAN: Well, we'll enter that into the record without objection. I have no further questions of the witness. You're excused, Mr. Galloway.

GALLOWAY: Thank you very much.

In that May post, I wrote that the tone and manner of Galloway's examination suggested that the Senators were trying to establish a specific point for the record, in the hopes of using Galloway's testimony against him later.

In the exchange above it is abundantly clear that both Coleman and Levin simply wanted to enter Galloway's denial of having discussed Oil for Food business with Tariq Aziz in the record. Levin immediately ends his questioning after eliciting Galloway's "Never". Coleman is content to merely establish that Aziz and Galloway were "friends" who had met "many times" before saying "I have no further questions of the witness".

The London Times reports that "The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations will refer the Respect Party MP for possible prosecution after concluding that he gave 'false and misleading' testimony at his appearance before the panel in May." In particular, the Senate alleges they have found a paper trail showing payments leading from Fawaz Zureikat to George Galloway's wife. The Washington Times further reports that "Mr. Galloway personally asked for and received from Mr. Aziz and others eight allocations from 1999 to 2003 for the rights to 23 million barrels of oil." In any trial over perjury, Galloway's response to the Senator's questions in May will loom large. Galloway is laughing the whole thing off. The BBC reports:

But Mr Galloway told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "The specific allegation against me is that I lied under oath in front of a senate committee.

"In this case the remedy is clear - they must charge me with perjury and I am ready to fly to the US today, if necessary, to face such a charge because it is simply false."

The Bethnal Green and Bow MP also launched an attack on the senate investigators.

"They have been cavalier with any idea of process and justice so far, but I am still willing to go to the US and I am still willing to face any charge of perjury before the senate committee," he said.

(Speculation alert) It was Galloway's contempt for the intelligence and capability of his Senatorial pursuers that may have gotten him into this perjury mess in the first place. It wasn't enough to remain silent on his relationship with with Zureikat. Playing to his gallery, Galloway boomed, "I can assure you, Mr. Zureikat never gave me a penny from an oil deal, from a cake deal, from a bread deal, or from any deal." Nice touch about the cake and the bread. Perhaps he couldn't imagine, at the time, why these yokels were asking him simple questions that were beneath his level of rhetorical ability. Even today Galloway may think so little of his adversaries that he was willing to boast on BBC Radio that "I am ready to fly to the US today, if necessary, to face such a charge because it is simply false." He is as smart today as he was then.

October 27th, 2005  
do you think he cares?!
October 27th, 2005  
Charge 7
Nice post, Italian Guy! That should nicely answer those here who were chearing that Galloway on.
Galloway, final chapter. The end.
October 28th, 2005  
26 October 2005
By Christopher Hitchens Vanity Fair Columnist And Arch Critic Of George Galloway

IT'S never a good sign when somebody denies something that hasn't been alleged.

In May, George Galloway got himself a few laughs and a lot of attention for telling a Senate sub-committee in Washington he had "never seen a barrel of oil".

Well, he hadn't been asked if he'd seen one, had he? (And neither have I ever seen one. I haven't seen a volt either, but I know it is, like a barrel, a unit of measurement.)

Yesterday, after a fresh report was published by the same Senate committee, Mr Galloway said he had "never asked anyone to act on my behalf" and then demanded the committee charge him with "contempt and perjury".

Well, in May he admitted writing a letter making Fawaz Zureikat his personal representative in Iraq.

And he was clearly told at the beginning of those hearings that the committee was not a court.

All it has done is accuse him of making "false and misleading" statements. So, an element of bluster and braggadocio - with Gorgeous George? Surely not - appears to have crept into his tone.

What the committee can and will do is this.

It will refer the matter to the Department of Justice. If it concludes Galloway received certain important sums from Mr Zureikat it will forward the papers in the matter to the Commons, in case anyone feels Mr Galloway should have declared those sums on the Register of Members' interests. And then we shall see.

The oil-for-food documents at May's hearings were quite difficult for non-experts to follow, as is the whole oil-for-food racket.

But the evidence presented yesterday is of two quite intelligible kinds.

The first is photographed bank statements from Citibank, Lloyds TSB, Bank of Scotland and Co-op Bank. They show payments to Mr Galloway's now-estranged wife Amineh Abu-Zayyad and to his now-wound-up "charity", the so-called Mariam Appeal.

If these documents have been forged it should be a simple matter to demonstrate the fact.

The second form of evidence consists of testimony from Mr Galloway's old muckers, now awaiting trial in Baghdad.

Tariq Aziz in particular, once Saddam Hussein's chief henchman, appears to confirm he was approached several times by Mr Galloway in person and solicited for money in the form of oil allocations.

The MP's spokesman Ron McKay has tried to pooh-pooh this by implying the testimony is coerced and comes from people usually called "genocidal maniacs".

Well, Aziz has continued to deny, through his lawyer, that he offered money to ambassador Rolf Ekeus of the UN Weapons Inspectorate, so he isn't always so cooperative. Most troubling for Mr Galloway, I would say, is this.

There is an Iraqi-American businessman living in Virginia named Samir Vincent. Faced with similar allegations as Mr Galloway, resulting from exactly the same investigation, he decided to cop a plea.

He has admitted under oath to being one of Saddam's paid agents of influence.

He is being very co-operative with the Department of Justice and has named some interesting names. The Press Association report that brought us Mr Galloway's slightly off-key denials described him as having refuted the charges.

Oh no he hasn't. To refute means to disprove or confound a charge. Perhaps the reporter meant to say rejected or repudiated.

There are really only two possible contingencies here.

The first is that a Senate sub-committee, co-chaired by a strong opponent of the war in Iraq, has been hoaxed or they have gone to all the trouble of a massive fabrication to smear a not very important member of the British House of Commons.

The second is that Mr Galloway has been involved in something very shady and nasty indeed. This money, remember, was meant to be used for the sick and starving in Iraq. If he helped divert or annex any of it, he was engaged in a War on the Needy, not a War on Want.

It's been a quite lousy week for the member for Bethnal Green and Bow.

The UN investigation into the murder of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri has heavily implicated the family and entourage of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad - whose rule was extravagantly praised by Mr Galloway on a visit to Damascus last summer.

Now his triumph of abuse and rhetoric in May is starting to look just a wee bit threadbare, even cheap. Read the report and decide for yourself.
October 28th, 2005  
American Committees are great at leaking information before they have the full story. Now before I start I will say that Galloway really rubs me up the wrong way and I can't stand him. Now having said that he is no bodies fool and is a pretty shrewd cookie. He tore the last American committee that had a go at to bits, and has already requested the people that have made the present claims against him to take him to court if they have the proof of his wrong doing. Well at moment there is no movement on that front, I wonder why. Now who are his accusers well most them are in American prisons awaiting trail, now I wonder if what they are coming out with is just gossip or do they have a paper trail that leads back to Galloway, only time will tell.
October 28th, 2005  
Charge 7
I would think that if they have the records of oil for cash money going into his wife's bank account, that then they do indeed have your "paper trail".
October 28th, 2005  
Actually its his ex-wife and they are estranged. He might be able to plead ignorence
October 28th, 2005  
After the roasting he gave them last time they met I am sure that if they any concrete evidence that they would have issued a summons by now. If they haven't got the evidence then try blacking his name with rumour, I wish they would put up or shut up.
October 28th, 2005  
Charge 7
I suspect you'll get your answer soon and my money is on an answer in spades.
October 28th, 2005  
this made me laugh back on election night, watch the vid