May 26, 2022

The Editor Speaks: “..the most breathtaking scoundrel of all”

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And the scoundrel is Caymanian Jeffrey Webb!

This is the wisdom of ex FIFA President Sepp Blatter.

In an article that appeared this week in the UK media publication The Guardian Sepp Blatter made this comment to journalist David Conn.

The article is titled Sepp Blatter after the fall: ‘Why the hell should I bear all the blame?’

Why the hell shouldn’t he? He was the head of FIFA? Doesn’t a fish stink at its head first?

David Conn’s article attempts to paint a nicer portrait of Blatter.

Look at these paragraph from his article:

“Looking at the course of his time at the organisation, I saw another dimension to Blatter and Fifa than the arch-villains of popular caricature. The photograph of him marooned in a blizzard of dollars thrown by the comedian Simon Brodkin could now be endlessly reproduced as the defining image of his tenure, but his record is more complex. He had arrived at the old Fifa in 1975, at the start of the watershed Havelange presidency, and become president 23 years later, when fistfuls of dollars were always going to rain on football. His first job had been to orchestrate Havelange’s development programme, and, for all the scandals and criticisms, nobody can deny that there has been a major concrete legacy of global improvement.

“So far, through a ferocious investigation of all Fifa’s books, he has not been accused of taking any money corruptly, while all around him football’s chiefs were helping themselves to it.”

“Personally, there seemed to be more to him as well, than the consiglieri-turned-don portrayal of him at the head of the Fifa family. People who knew him said that along with his wiles, ambition and ruthlessness were charm and a sense of humour, and that he did really love football.

“When we began to talk, he told me immediately that it was true: under the pressure of the arrests and the ethics charge against him, he had suffered a breakdown. “I had this collapse on 1 November and this was at the cemetery,” he said. “The Catholics, we always go to the cemetery to pay honour to our parents, all the families in the same grave, and I was there, I felt very bad at that time. They brought me immediately back to Zurich in a clinic; my immune system had collapsed.”

“Blatter could not understand why the US had gone for him when he had supported their bid to host the 2022 World Cup. Then he confirmed what had so often been speculated: that this plan was part of his ultimate aspiration to claim a Nobel prize, to be recognised to have made a major contribution to world peace.

“I asked him if it was true that he wanted a Nobel peace prize, and he replied with all due modesty that it would not be for him personally, but for Fifa, for the game: “We had meetings with the Nobel prize organisation. I was there, and what I was asking, really asking, was for the Nobel prize: for football, not for a man. It is the movement, for Fifa.”

“His chippiness about his provincial roots was clear after all these years, a need to show he had proved himself; even at 80, he referred to being from an Alpine region considered a backwater. He believes some of his troubles stemmed from jealousy in his country: “In Switzerland, you should never be too successful, otherwise they don’t like that,” he said.

“He is convinced that the US investigations began from then [Qatar being awarded the World Cup], and he railed at the Swiss authorities for cooperating so fully, at the unfairness of it all. He accepted that the American investigators appeared to have found major corruption, mentioning kickbacks on Copa America TV deals, but he argued that had nothing to do with Fifa itself, it involved the confederations, over which he had no control.

‘“So why the hell then should the Fifa president bear all the charges, the responsibility and the blame?”

“He singled out former Confederation of North, Central American And Caribbean Association Football (Concacaf) president Jeff Webb as the most breathtaking scoundrel of all. Blatter recalled being at the publication of the Concacaf integrity report, which identified the alleged frauds of the former secretary general and president Chuck Blazer and Jack Warner, and that Webb presented himself as the president for a new era of decency.

‘“Jeffrey Webb had tears coming down his face, saying: ‘I am humbled, I accept it; I promise I will do that.’ Blatter, warming up, did a little impression of Webb, and mimed the weeping.

“Then, on that morning at the Baur au Lac: “The first one arrested was him,” Blatter said. “How can you be misled by that or by yourself to say this man is a correct man? I was already thinking that he could be tomorrow the president of Fifa, a good person, a strong man.”’

To read the whole article and there is much more go to:

And, not surprisingly Blatter doesn’t like whistleblowers. He agreed with Conn when the article writer asked him if he thought whistleblowers were “like a snitch in school?”

“Yes, yes,” he said.

Therefore, in Blatter’s wisdom if you see corruption (like he must have) you look the other way and say and do nothing – just as he did. For Years!

But the most breathtaking scoundrel of all is…..!!

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