In October 2002, twenty-four year old Michael Sullivan moves from a job in lobbying to one in the diplomatic corps at the UN, he getting the job despite he feeling the interview having gone badly. He comes from a family of diplomats with both his father and his older sister having served - the former who was killed in 1983 in the US Embassy bombing in Beirut - and thus feels it is in his blood, his hope to make some difference in the world. He is assigned to be the assistant to Costa Pasaris - Pasha - the Undersecretary to the Oil for Food program, the largest ever humanitarian program in the organization. The program is to have Iraqi oil sold at market value with no proceeds going to the regime of Saddam Hussein, in exchange for food and medicine to the Iraqi populace who have suffered under that regime in Hussein filling his own coffers instead. Pasha quickly begins to see Michael as a trusted and valuable aide for the program, particularly against naysayers, especially internal ...Written by
Pasaris the name of is an infamous ultra brutal Greek-Romanian terrorist. He is condemned for multiple killings in Greece and Romania as well as other crimes like armed robbery, drug shipping and weapons selling. He is now serving a life sentence in Romania. See more »
The first rule of diplomacy is that the truth is not a matter of fact, it's a matter of consensus.
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'If you dig too deep, you may not like what comes up'
Michael Soussan's memoir of his experiences working for the UN during the Iraqi crisis has been transformed into a tightly woven screenplay by Daniel Pine and director Per Fly. The true story is at once enlightening, horrifying, and maddening - some truth about the degree of corruption on al levels of government not only in this country but also around the world.
Theo James takes on the role of Michal Soussan as he unravels the tale of the misappropriation of United Nations money in the Oil for Food program that was intended to supply food and medicine to the victims of Saddam Hussein's brutal madness in Iraq 2002 - 2003. The cast is uniformly excellent with the superb Ben Kingsley as the UN undersecretary Pasha in charge of the Oil for Food humanitarian effort to aid the desperate Iraqi citizens. He hires the somewhat naïve Michael Soussan to go to Baghdad to oversee the supposed infiltration of evil in the humanitarian program. Michael's naïveté fails to face the complex dealings of Christine Dupre (Jacqueline Bisset), the Kurdish Nashim (Belçim Bilgin), the evil Rasnetsov (Brian Markinson), and other characters portrayed by Rossif Sutherland, Rachel Wilson, Peshang Rad, among others.
The depth and extent of corruption in the manipulation of the billions of dollars sent for humanitarian aid but foiled by Hussein and the governments and big businesses of the world leading up to the attack on Iraq by President George Bush's included photomontage speech is horrifying. Yes, we all have heard and read about the extent of global corruption, but to watch it occur along with mass killings and degrading behaviors is staggeringly real and disgusting. Did the film need to be made? Yes, if we all care about somehow finding a means to end the greed and hypocrisy that still remains a global plague. Not an inspiring film, but a necessary one. And well done.
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