Remains the bomb. Here’s his opener:
At tough times in my life, with the landlord tossing my clothes and record collection out on to the street, I could have used an aunt like Benon Sevan’s. Asked to account for the appearance in his bank account of a certain $160,000, Mr Sevan, executive director of the UN Oil-for-Food programme, said it was a gift from his aunt. Lucky Sevan, eh? None of my aunts ever had that much of the folding stuff on tap.
And nor, it seems, did Mr Sevan’s. She lived in a modest two-room flat back in Cyprus and her own bank accounts gave no indication of spare six-figure sums. Nonetheless, if a respected UN diplomat says he got 160,000 bucks from Auntie, we’ll just have to take his word for it. Paul Volcker’s committee of investigation did plan to ask the old lady to confirm her nephew’s version of events, but, before they could, she fell down an elevator shaft and died.