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Frank Vogl

Frank Vogl is co-founder of Transparency International and author of “The Enablers – How the West Supports Kleptocrats and Corruption-Endangering Our Democracy”

[Washington D.C., United States]

Frank Vogl is president of Vogl Communications, Inc., in Washington D.C. and publisher of Vogl Communications works with leading financial services firms and economic development institutions.

Mr. Vogl is also the co-founder of Transparency International (and currently an adviser to its managing director) and is a co-founder and member of the Board of Directors of the Partnership for Transparency Fund and a Trustee of the Committee for Economic Development.

He serves as a member of the International Council of the New Israel Fund and of the Advisory Council of the United Nations Association of the Greater Washington Area. A former spokesman for the World Bank, Mr. Vogl was previously the international economics correspondent for the Times of London.

He is the author of many articles and books, and lectures extensively on global ethics and corruption. Some of his recent works include “The Enablers – How the West Supports Kleptocrats and Corruption-Endangering Our Democracy” (Roman and Littlefield) and “Waging War on Corruption: Inside the Movement Fighting the Abuse of Power”

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Articles by Frank Vogl

Remembering the Dead: We Must Do More

World Press Freedom Day and the legacy of Daphne Caruana Galizia reminds us of the urgency of fighting corruption and supporting civil society activists.

May 4, 2024

Navalny’s Death and the Continuing Global Fight Against the Power of Corruption

The murder of Alexei Navalny is a wake-up call to provide more support to valiant campaigners fighting against corruption.

February 17, 2024

Cryptocurrencies Soar, Governments Lose

The rise of cryptocurrencies reflects the public's loss of trust in governments and the global financial system.

January 13, 2024

Blowing Up Trump’s Brand and Finances

Who are you going to believe – Trump or your own eyes?

October 2, 2023

Switzerland To Act Against Dirty Cash?

Swiss authorities say they want to stop their banks laundering the cash of tax-evading tycoons, international gangsters and oligarchs. But a heavy dose of skepticism is needed.

September 12, 2023

Absolute Poverty Rises Amid Debt Distress and Corruption

New humanitarian approaches are vital instead of IMF austerity.

August 7, 2023

Corruption: The Global Killing Machine

Corruption so often reflects extraordinary greed and an unquenchable lust for power. If unchecked, it also produces death on a vast scale.

June 6, 2023

Sanctions Enforcement Is Urgent To Cripple Russia

So far the sanctions are not hurting the Russian economy, Russia’s leaders and oligarchs.

March 10, 2023

Trump: The Big Lie and the Big Rip-Off

How Donald Trump scammed his supporters to pocket hundreds of millions.

January 18, 2023

Is Trump Above the Law?

What sets democracy apart from autocracy is that no citizen is above the law.

November 23, 2022

Democracy In America Is On the Line

Donald Trump’s prime strategy is to undermine the U.S. system of justice – and make lots of money for himself in the process.

August 15, 2022

Zelensky’s Next Headache: Money

Ukraine needs billions to run Its government. As its economy dives, its budget spending soars. The global community needs to step up.

April 26, 2022

Bringing Russian Oligarchs to Justice

Why we need to worry that the current zeal of Western authorities to go after the Russian oligarchs will decline over time.

April 6, 2022

Can Russia’s Oligarchs Be Brought to Justice?

Only if we fight the corruption coming from the Kremlin and its coterie of oligarchs in earnest do the Russian people have a fair chance for a decent future.

March 29, 2022

Mr. Johnson, What Will the UK Do on Russia?

How serious is the UK government’s determination to act very firmly against Russian business interests in view of Putin’s constant transgressions?

February 22, 2022

Countering Authoritarianism: The Very Essence of Freedom

Looking ahead to 2022, three Nobel Prize winners have one uniting message for all of us: All around the world, we must fight much harder for freedom.

January 1, 2022

Confronting the Kleptocrats? Contain Their Western(!) Financial Managers

The governments participating in the November 2021 Biden Summit should hit the authoritarians where it hurts them the most – in their wallets.

October 27, 2021

Will Donald Trump Be Criminally Prosecuted?

Cyrus Vance, Manhattan’s District Attorney, is gunning hard to finally get Trump.

June 28, 2021

The Biden Administration’s Anti-Corruption Agenda

Will key European leaders join Biden’s approach on fighting kleptocratic regimes, whether Russia, China, Iran or Turkey?

June 21, 2021

Africa: Time for Truth-Telling?

Can U.S. President Joe Biden challenge human rights and corruption abuses at the June G7 Summit in Cornwall?

June 9, 2021

Can the Pope End Corruption?

Pope Francis is taking all the right steps to end the deep-rooted corruption in the Vatican. Will he be successful?

May 6, 2021

Covid, Greed and the Super Rich

While Covid-19 has taken a terrible financial toll on millions, thousands have profited like never before!

April 28, 2021

Is Democracy in Decline Globally?

Corruption and debt darken the global outlook for democracy.

February 21, 2021

US: Systematically Hollowing Out Democracy

U.S. political campaigns are one vast, sprawling political slush fund, designed to create a money-based web of post-election dependencies that is vast and largely impenetrable.

November 16, 2020

Goldman Sachs Got Caught

Goldman Sachs has to deal with unprecedented punishment for bribery.

November 10, 2020

The Post-Pandemic Crisis: What Happens Next?

The failure of multilateral strategic decision-making in these COVID times has been led by the Trump Administration and its bizarre attacks on international institutions.

October 26, 2020

Ruth Bader Ginsburg: A Titan on Values and the 2020 Election Risks

A personal perspective from an American Jew at a truly momentous time in U.S. history.

September 20, 2020

Two Bombshell Legal Surprises on the Eve of the US Election?

Two very different political clocks are ticking on the calendars of public prosecutors that could influence the 2020 US election. One has Republicans worried, the other the Democrats.

August 10, 2020

Trump and Corruption: Who Cares in the Time of COVID?

The Art of Undermining, or: How easily U.S. President Donald Trump gets away with corruption.

July 12, 2020

COVID 19: Assessing the Global Corruption Fallout

Corruption is bad today, but bound to get worse. Governments’ response to the COVID 19 pandemic amplifies the opportunities for abuse.

June 17, 2020

Argentina: Greed, Bonds, COVID and Your Cash

Argentina has defaulted on its debts, again. Will the IMF and investors be merciful?

May 25, 2020

March 23, 2020: The Day the US Economy Did Not Crash

The day when Fed Chairman Jerome Powell rode in to rescue financial markets to prevent their complete freezing up could have entered our history books as another global mega-crash.

May 14, 2020

What Does Putin Have on Trump?

A rare moment of bipartisanship of today’s hyper-partisan Washington -- and what it means for Russia, President Trump and holding clean elections on November 3.

April 30, 2020

Trump’s Total Control of Vast Virus-Aid Fund

It used to be said that beggars can’t be choosers. That obviously no longer applies in the United States of today. Corporations set the terms of their bailouts.

March 30, 2020

Time to Write Deutsche Bank’s Obituary?

Deutsche Bank, once the powerhouse of the German economy, is being battered ever harder by the fallout from ferocious crises, with no safe harbor in sight.

March 13, 2020

Trump’s Sense of “Justice”: Ever More Troubling

Forget the idea of the U.S. separation of powers. Donald Trump is annexing the entire U.S. justice system.

February 20, 2020

Bribery: The Driving Force Behind Middle Eastern Arms Sales

Corruption runs rampant in U.S. arms deals in the Middle East.

January 22, 2020

Trump, the Incomparable Arms Salesman

Right after Iran’s Soleimani was killed, the Saudis arrived at the White House.

January 21, 2020

US Tech Transfer: First to China, Now to the Middle East

The shortsightedness of the United States in allowing arms production facilities in Saudi Arabia and the UAE is unbelievable.

January 20, 2020

Prince Charles, UK Jews and Corbyn/Labour’s Anti-Semitism

The Labour anti-Semitism story may spin on. Will some of Corbyn’s Labour Party friends now start to quietly assert that they lost the election because of the Jews?

December 23, 2019

Giuliani’s Deceitful Ukraine Business Web

The way in which US officials collaborated with shady characters abroad to turn foreign policy into a personal business should leave anyone speechless.

December 3, 2019

Romania’s Anti-Corruption Progress

The battle against authoritarianism engulfs much of Eastern and Central Europe. Romania may emerge as a beacon of democratic hope.

November 21, 2019

Testing Zelensky: New Hopes for Ukraine

Trump’s clumsy efforts to bully Zelensky have weakened both the U.S. and the Ukrainian leaders, while playing into Russian hands.

October 28, 2019

Donald Trump: The Art of the “Self-Shakedown”

The man who has advertised himself for “The Art of the Deal” now engages in a mafia-style shake down on himself!

October 9, 2019

Dateline South Sudan: Grand Corruption’s Partners

World leaders dare not ignore today’s grand corruption.

September 21, 2019

Argentina: Heading for Financial and Political Mayhem

Argentina’s voters, foreign institutional investors and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) never seem to learn from previous calamities.

September 19, 2019

2020 and the Art of Hunting Trump

It's not about impeachment, but very much about investigating relentlessly.

September 16, 2019

Donald Trump and the Guns of August 2019

The U.S. President stokes resentment and hate speech wherever and however he can.

August 13, 2019

Reagan´s Executor: Trump and the ‘Complacent State’

There is something positively Lenin-esque in the Republicans´endeavor to slay the “monster” of the U.S. federal government. No wonder Putin loves Trump so much.

August 12, 2019

An Anti-Corruption Legend Has Died

The remarkable life of Robert Morgenthau – legendary anti-corruption enforcer.

July 28, 2019

Lagarde’s Leadership Should Not Be Underrated

The scope of central banking has expanded significantly in recent years. The former IMF boss is well prepared for those challenges.

July 23, 2019

The G20 Summit: Trump and Putin

Putin will likely meet Trump at the G20 summit in Osaka. Will their financial ties be the subject of their discussions?

June 28, 2019

US Voters: Fed Up with Corruption

Trust in the U.S. federal government is at an all time low. Democratic presidential candidates will need to convince voters that they understand their concerns.

May 26, 2019

EU Needed Now to Lead on Press Protection

The U.S. is no longer the active leader in promoting press freedom as a vital pillar of democracy. The EU ought to fill this space.

May 6, 2019

Is Any Democracy Safe from Russian Sabotage?

Robert Mueller's clear-cut warning to everyone who cares about democracy.

April 24, 2019

Mueller Report Fuels Still More Investigations

Trump’s fury will rise as the hunt for a smoking gun continues.

April 20, 2019

Are the World Bank and IMF Failing the World?

Amidst Trump administration flame-throwing, top experts worry about the ability of the main multilateral institutions safeguarding the global economy.

April 13, 2019

Trump Triumphant – for Now at Least

Trump feels that he has been vindicated by the Mueller report. But a host of other investigations into his past activities are going forward.

March 26, 2019

Watergate and Trump – Then and Now

Nixon resigned knowing that if he didn’t he would be impeached. It’s hard to imagine Trump ever resigning, no matter what the evidence.

March 7, 2019

The Consigliere Rats on the Don

Cohen goes for Trump – and it was not pretty. Democrats show their inquisitive skills.

February 28, 2019

US Vs. Trump: The Evidence Mounts and Mounts

The United States has entered constitutional crisis territory.

February 20, 2019

Schiff Against Trump: Let the Congressional Investigations Begin

President Trump dismisses Adam Schiff as a political hack pursuing the politics of revenge. But he may find him to be his worst nightmare.

February 7, 2019

The Double-Standard Raised by the Corruption Perception Index

Some of the countries that do best in Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index are where kleptocrats place their dirty cash.

January 30, 2019

US: How to Combat Terrorist and Other Illicit Financing?

The continuing hijacking of the global financial system by terrorist organizations and organized crime must be stopped.

January 28, 2019

Washington Is Reeling over New Reports of FBI Case

Is President Donald Trump a Russian agent?

January 14, 2019

Brexit: A Cultural Morphology

How the deep forces of British history, from royalism and classism to nationalism and imperialism, combined to trigger the Brexit moment.

January 8, 2019

Will Bad Bankers Ever Be Punished?

What can be done to rein in the prevailing culture of greed at leading global banks?

December 22, 2018

Iran etc.: Launch Sanctions and You Trigger Corruption

New U.S. Treasury investigation spotlights Russians, Syrians and Iranians.

November 27, 2018

The Decline and Fall of Donald Trump

The array of investigations centering on president Trump will dominate Washington politics for the foreseeable future.

November 21, 2018

When Murdering Journalists Becomes Commonplace

It is time to be far more forceful in defending reporters and activists who serve the public and monitor the powerful.

October 27, 2018

Don’t Cry for Me Argentina, Again and Again…

Latin America’s third-largest economy and its ongoing tale of economic crisis, political turmoil – and, of course, corruption.

October 1, 2018

Paul Manafort’s Europe Connection

Former European leaders took secret cash for their engagement in Ukraine. Will that have consequences?

September 19, 2018

Catapulting White Collar Crime into the Center of American Politics

Bankers get a free pass; Cohen and Manafort thought they had impunity; Senator Warren pushes anti-corruption law; White House accused of blocking investigations into student loan fraud by banks.

August 31, 2018

The Noose Around Trump’s Neck Is Tightening

It is possible that Manafort and Cohen have information relating to money trails between the Trump Organization and Russian businessmen, including ones with close ties to the Kremlin.

August 23, 2018

US: Drain the Swamp? Forget It!

The rot needs to stop if public trust in government, already at a low, is to be restored. But the prospects for constructive reforms are poor.

August 15, 2018

Trump’s Trial Risks Rise Big-Time

The courts move to the center of the U.S. political debate.

August 2, 2018

What Does Putin Have on Trump?

For the sake of U.S. national security, it’s high time for Donald Trump to release all his tax returns in full. Otherwise, the calls that he is in Russia’s pocket will only grow louder.

July 19, 2018

Brothers in Power: Trump and Netanyahu

The Binyamin and Donald show threatens to undermine, perhaps irredeemably, the institutions of democracy in Israel and the United States.

July 5, 2018

A Rare US Victory for Business and Justice

U.S. Judge Richard J. Leon’s ruling to allow the AT&T and Time Warner merger has sent a clear message: There are still law enforcement officers who refuse to be cowed by Trump.

June 15, 2018

How the World Bank Mismanaged the Reconstruction of Afghanistan

Vast inflows of donor cash, intended to bring about reconstruction, may instead have added significantly to Afghanistan’s corruption problems.

May 17, 2018

Malaysia: Democracy Won, But Will Justice Prevail?

The outgoing prime minister Najib Razak is already plotting right now to divide his opponents -- and thereby escape justice.

May 12, 2018

The IMF Wakes Up to Fight Graft

The IMF finally realizes that assigning priority to anti-corruption is not a choice but a necessity. It is now deemed a “macro-critical” issue.

April 30, 2018

Holocaust Ignorance: Today’s Dangers

There must be a new urgency to ensuring that people everywhere understand the horrors of the past and the dangers of today’s authoritarian trends.

April 22, 2018

Holocaust Ignorance: Today’s Dangers

There must be a new urgency to ensuring that people everywhere understand the horrors of the past and the dangers of today’s authoritarian trends.

April 22, 2018

No Impunity! When Presidents Go to Jail

South Korea's and Brazil's former Presidents are being jailed for corruption. South Africa's ex-leader appears to be next.

April 8, 2018

Trump’s Washington: Drowning In Conflicts of Interest?

Not a single Congressional Committee is looking into the abuse and utter mockery that is being made of official U.S. government ethics rules.

March 27, 2018

The Afghan Quagmire: Corruption Persists

Corruption and the lack of the rule of law is a fundamental cause of the Afghan debacle.

March 18, 2018

Trump’s Budget Priorities: Crimes Against Humanity?

President Trump’s proposed budget highlights the increasing White House determination to find military solutions to the world’s ills.

February 19, 2018

Wall Street Impunity: Why Kleptocrats Love America

Those at the top of Wall Street finance know that what they do may be wrong – but not necessarily illegal. And so they carry on, under the “watchful” eye of US authorities.

January 25, 2018

Trump Pushes for American Authoritarianism – With Success

At the end of Trump’s first year in office, the U.S. faces graver challenges than in many generations.

January 22, 2018

Corruption: The Root of Much Human Evil

Decent nations appear helpless against the spread of corruption. Their own elites keep promoting the racket.

December 22, 2017

When the Saudis Need Cash

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman wants to sell shares in state-owned oil giant Aramco to fund the grandiose reinvention of Saudi Arabia.

November 23, 2017

Russia Connection: Is Trump Having Sleepless Nights?

U.S. Special Counsel Robert Mueller is determined to go after Washington’s dark money pools.

November 20, 2017

Anti-Corruption: Saudis Use China’s Playbook

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is playing the corruption card to strengthen his control over the country.

November 12, 2017

Beyond Harvey Weinstein: Sextortion Around the Globe

Sextortion – the demand for sexual favors by powerful men – is especially prevalent in poor countries. It is the least investigated form of corruption in the world.

November 1, 2017

Pakistan: Booting Out Sharif

Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif being kicked out of office for corruption is a triumph for transparency and justice.

July 29, 2017

Trump’s Woes – But No Fatal Evidence So Far

There is no “smoking gun” yet.

July 18, 2017

Brazil: A Fallen Hero and the Start of a New Era?

Lula’s sentence is a signal to all of Latin America that justice can prevail. From Mexico to the tip of Argentina, corruption has pervaded politics for decades. Now is the time to fix it for good.

July 13, 2017

Trump’s Systematic Strategy to Abuse Power

Trump tramples on law enforcement in ways commonly associated only with dictatorships.

June 27, 2017

The Worst Human Crisis Since World War Two

America turns its back on the world's starving - will the G20 come to the rescue?

June 18, 2017

Trump and Russia: Just Follow the Money

The G7 summit communiqué surprisingly contains a direct and troublesome admonition for US President Donald Trump.

May 30, 2017

Africa: A Massive Tragedy That Could Be Avoided

The issue of the intense connection between corruption and violence fails to secure the attention it deserves.

April 29, 2017

Trump’s Era of Disorder

The U.S. President is challenging the U.S. constitutional provisions designed to prevent the abuse of public office.

April 1, 2017

Trump Delivers for His Wall Street Pals

Wall Street rejoices as tough U.S. prosecutors are fired and rules abandoned.

March 16, 2017

Fake News: Trump and Netanyahu

We need fact-checkers now, more than ever. But are they a real deterrence to politicians who lie?

March 2, 2017

U.S. Democracy For Sale: Just Ask Sheldon

Sheldon Adelson is the personification of money in American politics today. Perversely, nothing that he has done is illegal.

February 20, 2017

Trump and Corporate Secrecy: Welcome to the Dark Age

The U.S. Congress and Trump’s cabinet bring joy to the kleptocrats in Africa, Latin America and elsewhere.

February 8, 2017

Deutsche Bank’s Culture Wars

Deutsche Bank has become the poster boy for money laundering.

February 5, 2017

The U.S. Government and the Major Banks: Justice for Sale at the Bazaar

To date, not a single top banker has been put on trial, let alone sent to prison, for the frauds perpetrated by the institutions they lead.

December 29, 2016

Big Money Entanglements for Trump’s Nominees

Will the tangled finances of vastly wealthy leaders of the US administration become a possible cause for corruption concerns?

December 21, 2016

Corruption in Trump’s America

The election of Donald Trump could spell disaster for anti-corruption efforts in the U.S. and abroad.

November 21, 2016

US: Corruption Unchained

It’s becoming ever harder to go after corrupt politicians and lobbyists in the United States.

September 13, 2016

Beyond Dilma: The New Era of Anti-Corruption Enforcement

The Brazilian President’s removal from office will send shockwaves across Latin America, and possibly beyond.

September 3, 2016

US: Bankers No Longer Too Big to Jail?

U.S. politicians in surprising agreement to end impunity for bankers.

July 29, 2016

National Governments: Corrupted Systematically?

Breaking the ties between organized crime and official corruption.

June 14, 2016

Trump: Business Corruption and a “Horrible Law”

Five steps U.S. corporations should take to create a fairer society in the age of globalization.

May 16, 2016

Jail the Corrupt! No More Impunity

From Brazil to Macedonia, from Iceland to Guatemala, public prosecutors are going after corrupt top politicians on an unprecedented scale.

May 6, 2016

A New Era of U.S. Small Manufacturing Dawning?

The man who coined the term "emerging markets" now foresees a great future for "rustbelt" cities.

May 4, 2016

The “Panama Papers” Are About Criminals

It is high time for U.S., U.K. and Swiss justice authorities to act.

April 12, 2016

Cleaning Up the World: End Dirty Money

Any attempt to end money laundering will be staunchly opposed by vested interests.

April 4, 2016

Brazil’s and South Africa’s Watergate Moment

What happens when judges fight corrupt political leaders?

March 23, 2016

FIFA and Company: The New Mafia?

Can we clean up corruption in major sports around the world?

February 28, 2016

Mark Wolf: Judge on a Global Mission

Campaign grows for an International Anti-Corruption Court.

February 8, 2016

High Time for a Western Oil Strategy

Yes, we can boost global security and good governance.

January 26, 2016

The Fight Against Corruption: On the Home Stretch?

Why September 2015 matters much in the global battle on routing out corruption.

September 1, 2015

Is Genocide Inevitable?

Other outcomes are possible in African conflicts.

June 15, 2015

The Liberation of Bergen-Belsen: A Survivor Remembers

70 years later, a survivor of the atrocities of WWII recalls her experience.

April 12, 2015

Latin America’s Real Corruption Crisis

The outflows of illicit cash from Latin America are a staggering tax on its citizens.

March 27, 2015

The Mounting Global Challenges of Rampant Corruption

Only a united front against corruption can bring about its end.

March 19, 2015

Afghanistan’s Bitter Future

The consequences of the lengthy failure of the United States to address Afghan corruption.

December 27, 2014

The Hard Facts of Global Corruption

Action rarely follows rhetoric when it comes to global corruption.

December 5, 2014

China’s Battle Against Corruption Gets Serious

China’s Xi follows anti-corruption textbook, but still has a way to go.

July 30, 2014

Speaking Truth to African Power

What can be done to reduce rampant corruption with resources revenue in Africa?

August 11, 2013

Natural Resources, Natural Corruption?

How can transparency help end the fleecing of resource-rich countries by their corrupt leaders?

October 3, 2012

America in Afghanistan: Lessons from Iraq (Part II)

What lessons does the United States need to learn from Iraq so as not to waste taxpayer money in Afghanistan?

March 31, 2009

America in Iraq: Lessons for Afghanistan (Part I)

Will the reconstruction mistakes made in Iraq be avoided by the U.S. and its allies in Afghanistan?

March 30, 2009