Seems like FIFA had a pretty smart five-point plan to handle criticism of the stinky shenanigans that saw Russia and Qatar get the next two World Cups:
1. Commission investigation into dubious bidding process
2. Receive 360-page report and 200,000 pages of documents
3. Place in locked desk drawer
4. Pat self on back
5. Never speak of these things again
Strangely enough, there are some people who aren’t fully satisfied with this just and reasonable course of events, and are calling for — crazy as this might sound — the chance to actually read what former U.S. attorney Michael Garcia found in step two.
Those folks include Garcia himself, who essentially said in a recent speech that FIFA has the sort of attitude to transparency you might expect from the CIA. Secrecy during an investigation into alleged corruption? Well, that’s just not a good look.
Sure, Sepp could tell you what’s in the report. But then he’d have to kill you. Or reopen the bidding process. Or fire a few of his friends in Zurich. Or not get to stay FIFA president until he’s 130 years old and all that’s left of him is a head in a jar, like Richard Nixon in Futurama. Who knows?
Now Hans-Joachim Eckert, the German judge in charge of overseeing the investigation, has claimed that legal reasons prevent the publication of the report in full because confidentiality had been promised to contributors.
He told FIFA.com this “would actually put the FIFA Ethics Committee and FIFA itself in a very difficult situation legally. What is more, we have to respect the personal rights of the people mentioned in the report, which in the case of full publication of the report would in all likelihood not be possible.”
He says that he and his colleagues are going to produce some sort of overview in November summarizing the report’s key parts. Right now, they are currently “deciding what form this appropriate publication should take, whether this means issuing a statement regarding the investigation report or whether certain parts of the investigation report will be published while maintaining anonymity, or indeed a combination of these possibilities.”
So it looks like, at best, we’ll get the Cliffs Notes version, and have to take Eckert’s committee’s word for what Garcia uncovered. Anyone know if Edward Snowden’s a soccer fan?
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