FIFA and the World Cup is making headline news due to US Justice Department indictments against 14 current and former FIFA officials.
For many this move is unreal, since FIFA officials charged aren’t US citizens. They don’t live in America. Blatter is a Swiss national. In June 1998, he was elected FIFA president.
Blatter wasn’t named but isn’t out of the woods. US prosecutors indicated what’s announced isn’t “the final chapter. It is not over,” they said.
FBI Director James Comey indicated “work will continue until all of the corruption is uncovered and a message is sent around the world.”
Swiss Attorney General spokesman Andre Marty said Blatter “could be questioned. (E)very person involved in the allocation of the World Cups might be questioned.”
What’s going on appears more than what meets the eye. US officials want Russia’s status as World Cup 2018 host country rescinded.
Israel wants Palestinian efforts to suspend it from FIFA competition quashed – because of unacceptable abuses committed against its footballers.
Blatter may be today’s Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was IMF managing director from November 2007 – May 2011. Washington wanted him ousted for urging austerity conditions imposed on countries receiving IMF loans be softened. He publicly opposed making ordinary people pay the price for financial crisis conditions caused by banksters and other corporate crooks. He was also favored to be elected French president over America’s choice.
He was set up, unjustly framed in a sex scandal. Washington got corporatist Christine Lagarde appointed IMF chief. Right-wing Nicolas Sarkozy became French president.
Is history repeating? Instead of a sex scandal, its FIFA corruption with Washington overstepping by acting outside its legal jurisdiction.
He was reelected three times. He’s up for a fourth on Friday, May 29.
Britain’s Tory MP Damian Collins called him “the most despicable man in sport.” He urged new votes for 2018 and 2022 World Cup host nations – challenging current ones Russia and Qatar respectively.
UK Prime Minister David Cameron called for Blatter’s resignation. He supports his opponent – Jordanian Prince Ali Bin Al Hussein.
He’s FIFA vice president for Asia. He has close Western ties. In January, he announced he’d challenge Blatter for FIFA’s top post.
In response to US corruption charges, he said “(w)e cannot continue with the crisis in FIFA, a crisis that has been ongoing and is not just relevant to the events of today.”
“FIFA needs leadership that…accepts responsibility for its actions and does not pass the blame.”
European football association UEFA head Michel Platini called for Blatter to step down.
He wants Friday’s election postponed. So does French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. Platini blustered “(w)e cannot continue like this.”
If Blatter is reelected he threatened UEFA would consider pulling national teams out of FIFA.
“(A) majority” of UEFA associations will vote for Ali,” he said, if elections proceed.
English Football Association (FA) chairman Greg Dyke said “Blatter has to go. He either has to go through a resignation, or…be out-voted or we have to find a third way.”
“(D)amage…done to FIFA…can’t be rebuilt while (he’s) there so EUFA has got to try to force him out.”
Credit card giant Visa said it would “reassess our partnership (if) swift and immediate steps to address (ongoing) issues aren’t taken. It stopped short of calling for Blatter’s resignation.
FIFA sponsors Adidas and Coca-Cola called for its reform. Hyundai Motor and Anheuser-Busch expressed concern. McDonald’s said it’s monitoring the situation.
Long US knives got Strauss-Kahn ousted on fabricated charges to install Washington’s favorite.