Basically, The UN's version of events coyly supports Friedman's editorial while the State department is denying the pressure.
From the text of the story:
"A senior State Department official, asking not to be identified, said some officials at the department had made "a couple of inquiries" about when the report would be issued by the development program and whether it would contain a repetition of criticism of administration policies that has been a feature of at least one previous report in the same series.
The official said the inquiries did not amount to criticism, however."
Another unnamed State department official stated, ""The idea of suppressing a report like this is the last thing on the minds of the administration."
Issandr is going to talk to Nader Fergani next week so hopefully we will get more on this to see who is lying.
I can report this - In an interview I conducted with Fergani on 8 March 04 in Cairo, we discussed the then hot topic of the GMEI.
He said, " While the US is leaning on the AHDR for help in developing the plan, they are trying to kill it. Each paragraph begins by citing something from the AHDR, but the US was cutting $12 million from its contribution to the UNDP's core budget (he said this was approved by congress)." Hence the bureau which publishes the AHDR.
He attributed the financial pressure as US objections to criticism of Israel and American policy; He said Arab states did not have much to say about the AHDR, much less criticism of it.