UNITED NATIONS. LE MARECHAL

 

15 SEPTEMBER 2009

LE MARECHAL

The name is Monsieur. Jacques Monsieur. Or Monsieur Jacques if you worked at the Kinshasa International over a decade ago. He was a regular visitor there, intrigued and intriguing. Actually, you would be the visitor. He's a habitue. The Congo was his oyster. Whatever you call the country today, he will remind you that it was the Belgian Congo. Historically, it was a personal property of King Leopold. Actually, what is now Kinshasa was, for years of Belgian rule, known as Leopoldville. Lumumba, Kasavobo, Tshombe, they had all been under Belgian dominion until "L'independence Cha Cha Cha."

What did he do? Don't ask. He'll immediately tell you, through hint hint nudge nudge. He would like you to believe he's a spy. For several agencies, French, British, Israeli, German, you name it. In fact, in social chit chat, he offered information. In practice, he traded with guns. In fantasy speak, the former Belgian officer wanted to be known as "Le Marechal."

Jacques Monsieur sought opportunities among some U.N. "peacekeeping" people. Not very high level, but operational. If the Russian Victor Bout could manage to charter some used plans for U.N. missions in Africa, Monsieur Monsieur could "fix," "arrange," "exchange." He sold arms to all warring factions. He kept big powers informed and small rulers happy.

One of his most profitable ventures was in Teheran where he managed to sell U.S. missiles. However, he reportedly double-crossed his local partner after cashing 400,000 Euros from one deal. His own country imprisoned him for "espionage." So did Turkey. He would appear and disappear in peacekeeping hot spots or trading posts, from Bosnia and Croatia, to Angola and Equador.

Then came a time when Le Marechal was outsmarted by the Marshall. He was about to buy new engines for old U.S.-made Iranian F-5 jet fighters. Negotiations over six months in European locations were reaching a sensitive point when he found out that his prospective partner was a U.S. security agent. He is, as of September 2, a guest of the State of Alabama.