Do you remember the IRAQ WAR of 1991 and the deck of cards that the US military produced for their troops on the ground to identify 52 top targets with The Ace of Clubs being Saddam Hussein. He was captured in 2003 and executed in December 2006. Well, perhaps some enterprising newspaper should produce a deck of cards with SEPP BLATTER as The Ace and we can collect them and put a black cross as they are indicted, jailed and fined.
I bet that both RUSSIA and QATAR are worried what might show up in the next few days with the US department of Justice, INTERPOL, and the Swiss Federal prosecutors on the war path. It has been said that 2018 is only 3 years away and too late to find a replacement for Russia if something comes up. WELL, it is possible to postpone for 12 months until 2019 to give a FIFA nation time to prepare..maybe England with great stadiums, lots of trains and airports and still basking on the success of the London 2012 Olympics......AND there are hundreds of thousands of wealthy Russians living in UK anyway. Sporting events have been pushed back due to 9/11, SARS and other reasons...WE CAN WAIT.
What if PUTIN increases his military and political interference in UKRAINE and puts his troops on the borders of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia-former vassal states? The international insurance companies would refuse to insure expensive millionaire players, thousands of spectators, hotel chains, international airlines and the World Cup stadiums and infrastructures. THINK ABOUT IT.
When CHUCK BLAZER pled guilty to multiple charges of racketeering, bribery and corruption and agreed to wear a key fob wire in London 2012 and elsewhere we know that he has spilled the beans on other top FIFA officials. One bribe was paid by Morocco, hoping to host the 1998 FIFA World Cup but losing out to FRANCE. The Moroccans had been losers before...more than once.
In early 1988 I was visiting the old FIFA HOUSE on Hitzigwig to meet a young, budding referee called Michel Zen-Ruffinen, from a prominent Swiss family. He told me that when he was student president at University of Zurich he had invited then General Secretary Blatter to address the students. FIFA did not have a legal department, and on graduated Michel was invited and accepted Blatter's invitation to create one. When I visited he was also running the referees department, and later became a FIFA referee in his own right.
He gave me a grand tour, although I had visited a few times before. In President Joao Havelange's office were written bids for the 1994 World Cup lying on his desk. THE STRICT BID RULES OF CONDUCT stated that all the bid books should be in high school style exercise books...nothing fancy. WELL, I twisted my neck to look at the covers and the ones from Chile, USA and Brazil were as per rules. The Moroccan one was bound in the best Moroccan leather with gold lettering.!!!.
On 4th July 1988 I was at the Holiday Inn in Zurich when the FIFA Executive committee met to discuss and announce their decision. The day before on 3rd July an Iranian civilian airliner IRAN AIR 65, an Airbus A30082 had been shot down by a missile from the USS VINCENNES on a flight from Teheran to Dubai. It was in Iranian air space over the Persian Gulf on its regular flight path. ALL 290 ON BOARD PERISHED.
The Moroccans protested and asked that USA should be banned from the bid. I was watching the corridor where the 4 federation Presidents went in one by one to the ballroom where the committee was meeting to hear their fate. The first was the Brazilian. He went out and knocked on the door of the USA delegates suite and when it was opened by Thom Meredith he said "CONGRATULATIONS". FIFA WORLD CUP WOULD BE PLAYED IN THE USA FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME IN 1994.
. MORE LATER.