By Concerned CTBTO Staff – 2005-09-24 22:39:28
VIENNA — The crisis within the Vienna, Austria-based Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO PrepCom) — which was first reported in detail in July 2004 — continues unabated as no authentic internal nor external reforms have been enacted in the past year.
This is further proof that, in spite of several detailed human resources studies and other management reports costing over $120,000 and exposés in the international media about the dictatorial, unaccountable, process-oriented, bureaucratic, misogynistic, misanthropic and non-transparent management style of the Executive Secretary, Dr. Wolfgang Hoffmann (69) of Germany, his schemes continue to thrive much to detriment of all stakeholders concerned.
Dr. Hoffmann left his post at the end of July 2005 after nine years of misrule which was also characterised by fear and mistrust. The CTBT Secretariat employs 290 staff from 69 mainly European member states and has a budget of 105 million US Dollars for 2005.
Dr. Hoffmann, a cynical and manipulative career diplomat, who was unanimously elected Executive Secretary by the CTBT member states in September/November 1996, used the PTS as a personal fiefdom to further the interests of Germany and the European Union (EU) in a manner that resembled nothing less than that re-annexation of Austria by Germany. He also handed out plum positions in the PTS to scores of cheese-eating, wine-drinking, aging, sclerotic and incompetent EUnuch Ambassadors.
Dr. Hoffmann, who has reported received a remuneration package (including Provident Fund contributions), of approximately $3.5 million in the past nine years, also offered the maximum number of posts to pork-eating, beer-drinking Germans who would otherwise have joined their five million unemployed compatriots who live on diminishing state handouts.
Recently, the US Congress called for all top UN officials to make a comprehensive financial disclosure and Dr. Hoffmann needs to be included in this list while he seeks to fade into oblivion. Dr. Hoffmann has bought a villa in Baden, just south of Vienna and is dreaming of recreating the Greater Germany (the Fourth Reich), which will include Austria, Switzerland and a few other German-speaking states.
Multimillionaire Wolfgang Hoffmann has been handsomely rewarded by the member states for his comprehensive failures over that past nine years, inter alia, he failed to bring about the entry into force of the CTBT, failed to complete the global verification regime, failed to achieve a fifty percent gender balance in professional and higher grades and, most importantly, failed to employ one competent person for all of the 175 member states.
Instead. he created a self-serving Eurocentric gerontocracy. Had he done this there would be 175 nationalities represented at the PTS and it would have thereby become a truly international secretariat and a model for all UN Agencies….
The Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) was opened for signature on 24 September 1996 and has been so far signed by 175 and ratified by 123 states. The Republican-controlled US Senate rejected the CTBT in October 1999 and the Bush Administration, while opposing its ratification, provides the bulk of funding (22 percent), to the PTS, which in most instances uses this money to promote anti-American activities. Anti-Americanism has been a United Nations tradition since itís founding in 1945.
‘Anti-Americanism’ and ‘PTS Millionaires’
How has the PTS used US tax dollars to promote anti-Americanism? Firstly by not completing the establishment of the 337 station International Monitoring System (IMS), which is the primary technical task of the PTS. This system was to be fully operational by September 1999, however, Dr. Hoffmann blamed the member states for the slow pace of work and ensured their own survival by dragging on this work for as long possible. This is another UN work method: never complete your assignment on time or will become useless to your employer. Due to this devious strategy implemented by Hoffmann, the IMS will not be ready till 2007 — eight years and hundreds of millions of dollars later.
This meant that the critical information that the US policymakers needed to make decisions on the nuclear programmes of rogue states such as Iran and North Korea (DPRK) is not available as the IMS and the global verification regime are not fully operational.
In fact, there are enough nationals from states hostile to the US and Israel employed by the PTS in senior positions who are using their nine-year paid holiday that brings them each a tax-free annual income of over $140,000 to gather all information for their countries to become nuclear-weapon states. How many more PTS/UN millionaires will the US taxpayer help create while 37 million Americans live in poverty?
The International Atomic Employment Agency (IAEA) also based at the Vienna International Centre (VIC) and has a staff of over 2,500, is streets ahead in this regard.
In fact in 2001-02, Newsweek magazine reported that a North Korean diplomat who worked at the IAEA between 1978 and 1982 had copied many classified documents that were instrumental in North Korean developing nuclear weapons. While their nationals indulge in personal enrichment at the United Nations they help their states to undertake uranium enrichment to make bombs.
How long will the US allow this outrage to continue whereby American tax dollars are used to fund UN agencies that threaten its national security? Most individuals/diplomats who are nominated to work in UN Agencies are instructed by their governments to collect as much useful material and regularly meet with their former colleagues to provide information and receive new instructions. This is the practice, while the UN Charter (Article 100, paragraph 2) states that:
Each member [state] of the United Nations undertakes to respect the exclusively international character of the responsibilities of the Secretary-General and the staff and not to seek to influence them in the discharge of their responsibilities.
The 300-odd staff members of the PTS. like all international civil servants. sign/take an oath of allegiance. However, no amount of declarations can surpass the influence of patriotism and other inducements. In fact the greatest irony is that nationals from rogue states who have acquired the citizenship of the US and its allies and are nominated by them may also be using their positions to spy for their countries of origin. Thanks to memory sticks storing and transferring this data has become easier than buying a soda.
In fact, PTS employees from third-world countries use their tour of duty in Vienna to produce the maximum number of children (consumers) and all this on US taxpayer monies. These children will receive all allowances till the age of 21. Some employees have in excess of five children.
The real work of the PTS continues to be done by clerks, consultants, secretaries and unpaid interns while those in the Professional and Higher categories especially in the non-technical divisions spend their day surfing the web, writing personal emails, drinking coffee, smoking, visiting the Commissary and taking three-hour lunch breaks.
If there were a concept of performance-related pay at the PTS/UN, then they would all have been fired long ago. The PTS has a 30-hour ‘work’ week, although all UN Agencies claim to work 40 hours a week. Their productivity needs to be measured.
‘A Racist and Sexist Secretariat’‘
Dr. Hoffmann, who was known in diplomatic circles as the ‘German SWINEherd’, leaves behind a legacy of failure and obsolete management practices which showed no appreciation for the employees especially the hardworking Women of the General Services category in the Administration, Conference and Financial Services Sections. These Women should be appreciated, recognised and promoted, instead he has treated them as cogs in his racist and sexist secretariat. The PTS is neither a female nor family friendly working environment. Sexual harassment and cultural insensitivity are daily occurrences.
The true test of Hoffmann’s failure was that in spite of having a staff of only 290, he did not know the names of each of his employees — an unforgivable error for a former Ambassador. Dr. Hoffmann reserved his worst contempt/humiliation for the Austrians who he considered as being the inferior Germans and was very glad to see that in the past 10 years German corporations were running the Austrian economy and, since 2005, hoards of failed German students and job seekers were invading Austrian universities and the country….
‘The PTS and the Tsunami Tragedy‘
CTBTO commits mass murder: Warning system could have spared tsunami victims
The CTBTO Preparatory Commission could have spared the lives of the tsunami victims from 50 countries who were in the affected 13 countries in Asia and Africa. The International Monitoring System (IMS) of the CTBT could have saved the lives of the 285,000 persons killed by the Tsunami in December 2004. The PTS has 337 monitoring stations in four technologies around the world, including in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and the Indian Ocean.
In fact, it has stations in the affected areas, including hydroacoustic monitoring
stations in Australia, Cape Leeuwin,WA Hydroacoustic Station HA01 -34.4 115.1, and one very close to Sri Lanka at BIOT/Chagos Archipelago Hydroacoustic Station HA08 -7.3 72.4. This island is also known as Diego Garcia. There is a US Naval support facility on it as well. In fact, Dr. Wolfgang Hoffmann was in Sri Lanka and Indonesia just two weeks prior in early December 2004. There is a CTBT monitoring station located in Sri Lanka, six in Indonesia and one in Thailand.
Almost all nations in the affected region have signed the CTBT and receive data on a regular basis. The CTBTO Preparatory Commission has committed mass murder by its negligence. Will the affected states, and persons including tourists file a class action lawsuit against the CTBTO Preparatory Commission? Now is the time to Suenami.
The PTS was on holiday till 4th January 2005. If it was working may be the lives of the over 285,000 killed would have been spared as Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka are part of the CTBT Organization even if they are not part of the Pacific Tsunami Warning Network. The PTS could have given these states a head start of two hours about the approaching Tsunami.
This would have been enough time for these states to inform their citizens and tourists to move to higher ground. The PTS needs to accept responsibility for its failure and needs to offer an unconditional apology to the affected states and individuals.
‘Dr. Hoffmann’s Successor
Dr. Hoffmann was succeeded by another EU Ambassador Mr. Tibor Toth (50) of Hungary. Ambassador Toth has been the Chairman of Working Group A of the CTBTO Preparatory Commission which is mandated to deal with the administrative and budgetary matters of the PTS. He is been described by diplomats and staff members who have worked closely with him over the past nine years as ìincoherentî and ìindecisiveî rather than ìresults-oriented and emotionally intelligentî.
Ambassador Toth who started his first four year term on August 1, is recently remarried and has over 25 years of international experience in arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation and was in 2001-02 also the Chairman of the Fifth Review Conference of States Parties of the Biological and Toxic Weapons Convention (BWC), which entered into force in 1972 (however, it does not have a functioning verification regime or secretariat — Organization for the Prohibition of Biological Weapons, OPBW).
The former US Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security and the man whom President Bush recently appointed as his Ambassador to the United Nations, Dr. John Bolton scuttled the formation of the OPBW and thereby prevented Ambassador Toth from becoming its first Director-General. However, Ambassador Toth may be hoping for a Democrat in the White House in 2009 and he or she may help Toth to achieve this dream as he will only be 54 by then. Ambassador Toth was till recently the Hungarian Ambassador/Permanent Representative to dysfunctional talking shop — the UN Conference on Disarmament in Geneva.
The staff of the CTBTO/PTS are hoping that Ambassador Toth will, in consultation with them, implement reforms that will show results within his first hundred days. This may be an uphill task as Dr. Hoffmann, who has the self-confidence of Ron Jeremy, did his damage over a nine-year period. However, staff point out that Ambassador Toth is complicit in the actions of Hoffmann as he was well aware of the problems within the PTS in his capacity as Chairman of Working Group A where all administrative and human resources policies were formulated. Now there is an opportunity for Ambassador Toth to redeem himself.
Ambassador Toth will have to hit the ground running as Dr. Hoffmann has put him in a soup by arranging the Conference for the Entry Into Force of the CTBT (Article XIV Conference) for 21-23rd September in New York where he will have to extract pledges from the US, China, Colombia, Egypt, Israel, Indonesia, Islamic Republic of Iran, Viet Nam which have not yet ratified and Indian, Pakistan and North Korea which have not yet singed the CTBT. The full membership of all 44 nuclear-capable states listed in Annex of the CTBT is necessary for the Entry into Force of the CTBT. In fact, Dr. Hoffmann made no honest attempt to get these states onboard as this would have made him redundant. As in past four years the Bush Administration is unlikely to send a delegation to the 2005 Article XIV Conference. Ambassdor Bolton wants the US to unsign the CTBT.
Lanky Ambassador Toth needs to urgently resolve the Israeli non-inclusion within the Middle East and South Asia (MESA) Geographical Region of the CTBTO Preparatory Commission so that Israel can fully participate in its work. Iran and the other Arab/Islamic states of this Geographic Region have not accepted Israel as a part of this group although this is the correct Region for Israel. He needs to also urgently get Iran to switch on its monitoring stations so that data can flow the International Data Centre (IDC) of the PTS in Vienna.
‘How to improve the PTS‘
Tibor Toth needs to:
1. Present a Concise Action Plan for PTS Reform to the staff and all other stakeholders within his first 100 days. The staff of the PTS implores Ambassador Toth to rigorously and non-selectively implement of the seven or nine year limitation on employment for the Professional and higher staff members.
2. Introduce a dress code as it is long overdue. Most staff are dressed in jeans, T-shirts and other immodest garments. They have no understanding of what is it is to be an International Civil Servant. In fact, one US citizen of South Asian origin working in the Personnel Section is dressed in such a provocative manner that one can only assume that she is competing with Jenna Jamieson.
3. Introduce and enforce of zero tolerance policies on sexual harassment, abuse of authority and mobbing by supervisors and not punishing employees for having the honesty, commitment and courage to speak the truth to power. Introduce time keeping for all employees in the Professional and higher grades. Limit personal calls during office hours and reduce cigarette and coffee breaks.
4. Promptly dismantle the spy network created be Hoffmann whereby decent employees were victimized due to the lies of his spies. To do so Toth will have to immediately replace the chief spy who was the Personal Assistant of Hoffmann for nine years and is now working for Toth. There is at least one Hoffmann mole in every Unit, Section and Division of the PTS.
5. Ensure that only those employees who are needed at the meeting of the Policy Making Organs (PMO)s are present in the conference rooms so that other staff do not sit there doing nothing and wasting time and resources. This rule should specifically apply to the senior staff of the On Site Inspection (OSI) or Only Sitting Idly Division. In particular one individual of this Division who holds a UK passport and can be seen smoking and drinking coffee the whole day and providing confidential information to journalists.
6. Make public the cosy arrangement that the PTS has with the Washington-based Arms Control Association (ACA) and that the Public Information Section (PIS) of the PTS be made result-oriented under a young and dynamic leadership which can ensure its daily visibility in the international media and civil society as it currently duplicating and interfering the work of the Conference Services Section. Can the PIS submit copies of all articles that have appeared in the media since is current Chief, Ambassador Daniela Rozgonova (61) of Slowvakia took over in January 2000? This would be a very small file. Has any of her own writing been published in the press? May be she has not written any. Multiple Internet searches yield none of her articles.
7. Post a press release on the web site giving a detailed breakdown of the budget for 2006 after it has been approved by the CTBTO member states in November 2005. More and useful information for the media and NGOs needs to be posted on it as well. The mobile phone number of the PTS spokesperson also needs to be posted on this web site. When will it start using Really Simple Syndication (RSS), blogs, podcasting and adding multimedia content to its web site as it is currently in the Guttenberg era?
8. Introduce intelligent office software such as customised voice recognition programmes, web and video conferencing, introduction of digital hard-disk recorders and digital memory pens which seamlessly integrate with the computer and make typing and taking notes optional. The PTS needs to save paper and cut down on ìduty travelsî by introducing satellite, video and web conferencing. All sample memos and reports need to be posted on the PTS Intranet.
In the long-term these technologies can help to increase productivity as all mechanical tasks can be automated. They are also hoping for secure WiMax. Ambassador Toth needs to urgently revamp the user-unfriendly official web site of the PTS (www.ctbto.org), which currently does not even list his complete biography. This failed web site is the brainchild of Ms. Daniela Rozgonova, Chief of the Public Information Section (PIS).
The Internet has become the bane of the PTS/UN system as employees now spend most of their office time reading news and indulging in other non-work related activities such as online chatting, flirting, writing personal emails, exchanging racist and sexist jokes/images, downloading songs and videos and making online purchases. Ambassador Toth needs to restrict the Internet access hours and also needs to cut down of the useless training and university courses employees are obliged to attend as they provide no practical benefit.
9. Ambassador Toth needs to launch a UN-wide initiative whereby heads of all United Nations and other International organizations voluntary and annually testify before the US Congress about the progress made by their secretariats especially with regard to financial management, value for money audits, increasing productivity and results oriented output achieved through office automation and not increasing staff numbers. Prevention is better than cure.
Ambassador Tibor Toth needs to be part of the solution and not part of the problem as some staff members fear that his presence in Vienna is akin to the revival the Austro-Hungarian empire and hope that he will not turn the PTS into a Goulash (Hungarian farmerís soup). John Stuart Mill said that no cause succeeds unless someoneís self interest is tied to it.
Ambassador Toth, who is aiming for the Director-General post of the OPBW and is possibly even a future UN Secretary-General candidate, needs to show results soon at the time with when the UN is in crisis, the 2005 NPT Review Conference was a flop and the rest of the UN disarmament machinery is in disarray. He needs to ensure that the PTS does not go from Gulag to Goulash.
Toth has a an opportunity to immortalise himself by working towards the adoption of a comprehensive Nuclear Weapons Convention which will prohibit the development, testing, production, stockpiling, transfer, use and threat of use of nuclear weapons and their elimination and to do so he need to begin by establishing a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone throughout Europe (ENWFZ). Will France, Russian and the UK give up their nuclear weapons and will the U.S remove its weapons from European territory? It is necessary to ban the bomb not just the bang. This column will revisit the PTS in the summer of 2006.
‘Related web links‘
• CTBT Secretariat in crisis: Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Threatened.
Inside Report: The Nuclear Test-Ban Commission Is on the Verge of Collapse
THE COMPREHENSIVE NUCLEAR TEST-BAN TREATY
• [CTBT Adoption Resolution] A/RES/50/245. Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty
• Recognition of the [ILO Administrative] Tribunal’s jurisdiction by the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO PrepCom)
• Test Ban Treaty Members Select New Agency Leader
• Q&A: What is the CTBT?
• IAEA Envoy Nomination Held Over CTBT
• Biological Weapons Convention Meeting Ends Without Recommendations
• [CTBT] Bush Seeks to Cut Test Ban Treaty Funding
• [CTBTO] Atomic agency agrees to share data on tsunamis
• [CTBTO] Nobody home at international arms control organization
• Test Ban Network Probably Detected Quake But Was Unequipped to Warn of Tsunami
• Listening for Atom Blasts, but Hearing Earthquakes
• POTENTIAL CIVIL AND SCIENTIFIC APPLICATIONS OF THE CTBT VERIFICATION TECHNOLOGIES
• Tsunami warnings, UN style
• Arms Control Association
• Egypt links ratifying nuclear test ban to Israel joining NPT
• [WMO] Theft and Mismanagement Charged at UN Weather Agency
• Tsunami Earthquake Three Times Larger Than First Thought
• Prevention is better than cure but the world is still unprepared for disaster: Fear of calamity in a changing climate
• False alarms plague Pacific tsunami system
• Satellites Watching for Nuclear Tests
• System to trace unauthorised nuclear tests in Asia Pacific
• Remarks by Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) on the CTBT
• Charter of the United Nations
• UN Watch
• UN Whistleblower protection
• UN weighs ethics unit to protect whistle-blowers
• US Bill Would Demand UN Reform
Other elements of the bill include strengthening the U.N. whistleblower policy and making the U.N. internal watchdog an independently funded agency. The bill would put in place new ways to crack down on sex abuse by peacekeepers and require annual financial disclosure statements by senior U.N. officials.
• International Law of Civil Servants
• The International Civil Servant in Law and in Fact
• A European Nuclear Weapons Free Zone
• [Model] Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Testing, Production, Stockpiling, Transfer, Use and Threat of Use of Nuclear Weapons and on Their Elimination