6.20.03 -- Defense Secretary Rumsfeld qualifies for inclusion in a "Conservatives Most Wanted" card deck for any number of reasons. One reason that is not getting nearly enough attention is his alleged complicity in selling nuclear reactors to North Korea in 2000.
Rumsfeld was a director on the board of the Zurich engineering company, ABB, when they signed a contract with the North Korean government to supply that government with two light water reactors.
http://www.bagnews.com/topica/youllneversee.jpgDespite his intense "hands-on" nature and the allegation by at least one board member that he was aware and actively involved in the transaction, Rumsfeld's spokesperson insists he has no recall of the activity. (He has been unwilling to address the issue publicly.)
It is interesting to observe Rumsfeld's current threatening posture toward North Korea considering how compromised he is by his past actions. Like the conflicts of interest involving Vice President Cheney and the energy industry (and between Cheney, Halliburton and Iraq), Rummy's case is further evidence how this "CEO Administration" operates in their own morality-free world.
It's a game that functions on the principal of denial, as if the "profit motive" is simply a "blind spot" in the civic consciousness. That being said, it is all the more amusing when administration officials react to charges of conflict of interest with moral indignation, rebuffing questions about conflict of interest by appealing to higher ethical ground.
For further reference, there is an excellent Fortune Magazine article on this story .