If anyone needed further evidence of the fact that Sepp Blatter is now officially running scared, you need look no further than today's revelation that FIFA recently invited British investigative reporter Andrew Jennings and two other noted European journalists who have been equally critical of the organization to come to Zurich and take up roles in the Kabuki theater extravaganza known as "The FIFA Reform Process".
Jennings, Switzerland-based Jean Francois Tanda and Germany's Jens Weinreich have collectively turned down FIFA's invitation on the basis that, in their view, it's a fixed game and lending their names to the process would accomplish nothing other than give credence to Sepp Blatter's desperate attempt to hold on to power over an utterly corrupt system which he himself constructed.
There was, of course, no actual question of whether FIFA would follow any recommendations they might offer. Not a chance.
But by simply having had them around to Zurich for coffee and conversatio FIFA could claim that they had "participated in the reform process".
And they simply aren't that stupid.
Even better, they say that one of the main reasons for this is that the President of the United States Soccer Federation is involved, writing that they "cannot participate in any process that includes...USSF President Sunil Gulati, who
"....has been silent during the two decades of Jack Warner and Chuck Blazer’s controversial stewardship of CONCACAF’s finances and the massive World Cup ticket rackets run through this regional confederation."
In an astonishing statement jointly published by the three European writers, they explain their reasons for shunning FIFA's invitation:
"...We are recognized internationally as experts on the dark world of Joseph Blatter and his associates, inside and outside FIFA...
"It is absurd that Blatter, who has benefited from the explosion of corruption during his tenure as FIFA General Secretary and President and who managed the kickback scandals for at least two decades, is controlling this ‘clean-up’ scheme. It is created by Blatter to protect him and those close to him. His pretence of a ‘road map to reform’ is risible."
And that's just for openers.
In fact, they list nine things which FIFA can and should do immediately if they are actually serious about cleaning up the mess.
Among them being:
- the immediate publication of the Zug Switzerland Magistrates report which, they note, there is no legal impediment whatsoever against doing.
- full disclosure of the names of all the recipients of the 140 million Swiss Francs worth of kickbacks which ISL is known to have paid to FIFA officials.
- complete operational transparency including the broadcast of all meetings and the publication of all votes "on all occasions...by name".
- an array of financial disclosures including putting "all FIFA financial documentation since 1998 when Sepp Blatter became FIFA President...on-line"
- the immediate suspension of ExCo member Nicolas Leoz of Paraguay, who provably received almost US$ 1,000,000 in bribes from ISL.
When FIFA does these simple things which, it should be noted, will happen at about the same time as the snow starts to pile up on the hills of Hell, they can then begin to investigate what's been going on, including:
- all salaries, bonuses and other benefits paid in the last decade to Blatter, Jérôme Valcke and all departmental directors.
- all fees, bonuses and expenses – submitted and paid – of ExCo members in the last decade along with details of their Swiss tax arrangements.
- the contracts and cost since 1998 of Blatter’s use of chartered jets, his destinations and justifications for trips.
- independent outside investigation of the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.
- investigation of how it is, exactly, that a FIFA Vice President, Argentina's noted anti-Semite Julio Grondona, has assets deposited in Switzerland totaling over US$ 120,000,000.
- investigations of both Jack Warner and Chuck Blazer in connection with a laundry list of accusations.
As the saying goes, read the whole thing, including the additional comments at the bottom where both Jennings and Weinrich state that FIFA "ticks all the boxes in academic definitions of Organised Crime Syndicates."
As if all of that is not enough to send Sepp Blatter running for the liquor cabinet, today brings the additional news that the chief strategist behind Blatter's new "reform campaign" is none other than his old friend, the utterly repugnant pustule on the ass of humanity, Peter Hargitay.
Hargitay, you'll recall, is the man who saved Union Carbide from having to pay actual money to the thousands of victims of the Bhopal, India chemical disaster by more or less openly bribing the hell out of a bunch of government officials, and the guy who got international criminal Marc Rich off the hook for breaking both the United Nations ban on oil sales to Apartheid-era South Africa and the arms embargo on Iran by spreading mounds of cash around in the right places.
More recently, he was hired by the England FA to use his FIFA connections to promote their World Cup bid but was later fired after he asked them for US$6 million to use as bribes for FIFA ExCo members.
So of course when Sepp Blatter decided he wanted to root out "corruption" in FIFA, his first hire was a guy who knows more about massive bribery than any other man alive.
Overall, it's becoming more and more obvious to everyone that Blatter's dedication to "reform" is nothing more than just another whitewash, and the world is recognizing that the man is a pompous, self-aggrandizing liar.
More and more, the real quetion is not whether Blatter can "reform" the organization.
Rather, the question is: can Blatter survive?