One name that hasn’t
appeared on Commissioner Cole’s radar at the AWB enquiry is that of John
Dauth, our ambassador to the UN in New York for the better part of the scandal
which provided millions of dollars straight into Saddam Hussein’s pockets.

Crikey is not for a moment suggesting that the veteran diplomat was in any way
involved but common sense would have it that he must have had more than just a
passing knowledge of what was going on – after all, many of the cables getting an
airing at the Commission emanated from his New York mission – and his name is
writ large on many of them.

Dauth is particularly close to Downer and his wife
Nicky, who during their many visits to New York often camped
at Dauth’s official residence at Number 1 Beekman Place, the best address in the
Big Apple.

You could bet your bottom dollar that the cozy family dinner
conversations were not about interior decorating or Nicky’s latest involvements
in Adelaide’s arts community.

Dauth is currently seeing out his diplomatic days
as our high commissioner in Wellington, New Zealand, a far cry from the heady
days in New York and at Buckingham Palace where he did a stint as Prince
Charles’ media man.

Peter Fray

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