Monday, July 18, 2011

Sexual politics . . .

FOREIGN POLICY'S TURTLE BAY BLOG has a fascinating article by Colum Lynch, "The Whistleblower: The movie the U.N. would prefer you didn't see". It's a movie review of "The Whistleblower" with Rachel Weisz as a U.N. policewoman who stumbles into the sordid world of Balkan sex trafficking and finds her fellow U.N. peacekeepers implicated in the trade. Love Rachel, and I can't wait to see it.

It constitutes perhaps the darkest cinematic portrayal of a U.N. operation ever on the big screen, finding particular fault with top U.N. brass, the U.S. State Department, and a major U.S. contractor that supplies American policemen for U.N. missions.

The subject matter is familiar territory for Turtle Bay. A decade ago, I wrote a series of stories on U.N. police misconduct in Bosnia for the Washington Post, including a detailed account of U.S. police abuses and this piece documenting U.N. efforts to quash an investigation by a former Philadelphia cop, David Lamb, into allegations that Romanian peacekeepers participated in sex trafficking.

It sure is a sorry part of the world. Science-fiction author John Ringo has a series of thriller novels about a modern-day Georgian tribe known as the Keldara, who contend with the above. The second novel in the series, situated in the Balkans, "Kildar" is available on-line as are all of them. (Warning: not for the politically-correct or "useful idiots", as Lenin remarked, so don't get a wedgie, but the author goes into a lot of depth about conditions, including UN involvement in nefarious activities that might not be so fictional, after all).

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