Monday, June 06, 2005

The U.N. in the 21st Century

Sixty years ago, the United Nations came into being. Created as a replacement for its failed ideological ancestor The League of Nations, the UN was intended to be a forum for the stabilization of international relations in an effort to promote peace.

Just as the League of Nations failed at this task, so too has the United Nations. Looking back over the last 60 years, the list of accomplishments by the UN pales in comparison to its list of failures. These failures certainly come as no shock. Throughout its history, the UN has refused to uphold its own charter. Chapter 1, Article 2 lists a set of principles:
The Organization and its Members, in pursuit of the Purposes stated in Article 1, shall act in accordance with the following Principles.

1. The Organization is based on the principle of the sovereign equality of all its Members.

2. All Members, in order to ensure to all of them the rights and benefits resulting from membership, shall fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them in accordance with the present Charter.

3. All Members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.

4. All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

5. All Members shall give the United Nations every assistance in any action it takes in accordance with the present Charter, and shall refrain from giving assistance to any state against which the United Nations is taking preventive or enforcement action.

6. The Organization shall ensure that states which are not Members of the United Nations act in accordance with these Principles so far as may be necessary for the maintenance of international peace and security.

7. Nothing contained in the present Charter shall authorize the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such matters to settlement under the present Charter; but this principle shall not prejudice the application of enforcement measures under Chapter Vll.

Violations of these principles are to be dealt with in accordance to Chapter 2, Articles 5 and 6 which state:
Article 5
A Member of the United Nations against which preventive or enforcement action has been taken by the Security Council may be suspended from the exercise of the rights and privileges of membership by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council. The exercise of these rights and privileges may be restored by the Security Council.

Article 6
A Member of the United Nations which has persistently violated the Principles contained in the present Charter may be expelled from the Organization by the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.

insofar as I can tell, Article 5 has rarely been used and Article 6 has never been used (please correct me if I am wrong on this point), though Taiwan, a member in good standing, was essentially expelled to placate the PRC.

Such failure to enforce these principles comes as no shock when you see that for the UN's entire history, Communist Russia, and more than half its history, Communist China have sat on the Security Council. These two countries alone account for roughly 100,000,000 deaths and have the bleakest human rights histories on the planet. It therefore comes as no great surprise that other violators would not be removed.

In addition, Chapter 2, Article 4 was apparently written only to take up space:
1. Membership in the United Nations is open to all other peace-loving states which accept the obligations contained in the present Charter and, in the judgment of the Organization, are able and willing to carry out these obligations.

2. The admission of any such state to membership in the United Nations will be effected by a decision of the General Assembly upon the recommendation of the Security Council.

Virtually every country on the planet is a member of the UN and if they all actually met the standards of Article 4, the world would be a much different place. As it stands, a large portion of those countries should never have even been admitted in the first place.

Unfortunately, since long before the UN came into existence, the world has been under constant assault by believers in moral relativism. The world has moved ever further away for the ideals of right and wrong towards a "who are we to judge" attitude. It was precisely this attitude that allowed countless dictatorships to not only join the UN, but to supposedly occupy morally level ground with countries that actually believe in human rights.

Nearly 30% of the members of the UN Commission on Human Rights are listed by Freedom Houseas being "Not Free." In fact six members: China, Cuba, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Zimbabwe have the dubious honor of being on their "Worst of the Worst" list. Even if this were not the case, the UN has undertaken it as part of its mission to completely distort and muddle that concepts of rights. To this end, the UN, in 1948, issued a monstrosity entitled theUniversal Declaration of Human Rights.

If one were to judge this document solely on its name, they might think it strange that a labeled it a monstrosity. But as the saying goes, "the proof is in the pudding." Keeping in line with the wishes of its leftist members, Articles 22 through 29 were inserted. These false positive rights are not rights at all and can only be achieved by the violation of actual negative rights, but of course they "feel" good, so the must be good. Take for example Article 26, Section 1:
(1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

Sounds wonderful doesn't it? Free education! The problem is, no such beast exists in nature. True, it may not cost the student or the family of the student anything, but SOMEONE is most definitely bearing those costs, and quite likely against their will. It also states that Elementary education is COMPULSORY, i.e. you have no choice in the matter. Interestingly enough, those same people here in the US that would support not only the UN in general, but this declaration in specific would rather pretend that Section 3 of that same article did not exist:
(3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

In fact, the "bluer" a state is, the more likely it is to be opposed to ideas promoting school choice such as vouchers or low regulatory boundaries for homeschooling (with some exceptions).

The UN, like all bureaucracies, has grown to become a bloated nightmare inserting itself into virtually every facet of peoples lives that it can get a foothold on by such means as theConvention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage and this report from the High-Level Panel on Financing for Development which calls for, among other things, an International Tax Organization and the imposition of global taxes.

In addition, this bloat has apparently made it impossible for the UN to regulate itself. Whether it be the Oil for Food Scandal, the various sex scandals involving "peacekeepers," or who knows what the hell else, the UN has demonstrated quite clearly that it is rife with corruption.

Naturally lip service has been given to the problems. Kofi himself has called for reforms in 1997, 2002, and 2005. The problem is Kofi has clearly shown that he is not capable of providing the leadership necessary to implement the kind of root level reform necessary to make the UN the bastion of legitimacy that it so clearly sees itself as.

For the UN to continue into the 21st Century in the role of an organization that has the moral authority to act as arbitror for the world, it will take more than lip service and failed leadership. It will take a complete ground-up re-organization based on actual rights and the stringent enforcement of the principles of freedom, democracy and rule of law. ALL dictators, thugs, and despots must be expelled so that it is made clear that they are not the moral equivalent of countries that believe in and follow the aforementioned principles.

Personally, I don't believe that such change is possible. The best that can be hoped for is that a few good countries, perhaps the US, the UK, and Australia, will leave the UN, taking their funding with them. This would undoubtedly cause the UN to implode. So be it. A turd is a turd no matter how you look at it. It is time for the UN to go the way of the dinosaurs and the League of Nations.

Liberty Dog - One Billion Red Chinese and a Dog Named Liberty

Wow, what a well put together and impassioned post. Great job Liberty Dog, I have a hard time adding to it or following it. The U.N. as of late has been showing the pinnicle of their ineptitude. The biggest slap in the face to the world in recent history, besides the obvious (oil for greed), was that the U.N. actually appointed Iraq as the oversight for Human Rights, without regard to the fact that Iraq had been one of the worst abusers at the time (Anybody remember the Kurds? Well neither did they).

The U.N., like many things anymore, was a great idea, badly implemented and badly run. They became a self-sustaining, self-feeding entity with no real power, and absolutely no resolve. One of our biggest mistakes, in recent history, has been in trying to appease the U.N. It has bitten us in the butt once to many times, and for what? Are they sending in stabilizing forces? No. Are they providing aid to those in need in the Middle East? No, but they will try to let you think they are as they rob the world blind.

The U.N. has become a corrupt, spineless, profiteering and powerless entity whose time has passed. The world as a whole is apparently not ready for a world government, and attempts to do so at this stage will only end in miserable failure.

Zaphriel - Birth of a Neocon

Wow, that is QUITE the essay, my friend. Well, I'm going to make this response short and SWEET. I will NEVER, EVER, respect ANY government that is not made FOR the people, BY the people, and OF the people; be it of the world OR of our own nation.

I *refuse* to recognize the United Nations as a legitimate entity worthy of power until they throw ALL brutal dictators and heads of communist states out on their ears, and unite to free the people they victimize. As long as there are people being oppressed and BRUTALIZED in this world, and as long as the "oppressors" and "brutalizers" hold seats of power in the UN, I'll have no part of it.

Until such a time arrives, the United Nations can all unite in a "collective effort" to drop to their "collective" knees and kiss my "singular" BUTT. Let's think of the UN as a "party" you have been invited to. You know there will be some great people - some of your FAVORITE people - attending that party. Through the "grapevine" you learn that murderers and theives will ALSO be there as well. Do you go to that "party", or do you find something better, safer, and more PRUDENT to do with your time?

The answer IS... you go to some other party instead. SCREW the UN!

Carl- The Gun-Toting Liberal

It is absolutely correct to say the United Nations has failed in almost every conceivable way to live up to its charter and tenets. It was founded by a few true visionaries on the faith that humanity at large values freedom over power, love of man over wealth and peace over war. This naive faith in humanity, while honorable, was the initial and innate failure of the U.N as a whole. If there is one reason above all others that the U.N has failed, it is that too many members both powerful and weak have sought to use the U.N as a tool to further their own agenda rather than as a tool for world peace and betterment. It was not the organization that failed but the men and women who abused it.

How did nations fail the ideals of the U.N? Nations failed because either the leaders of nations were too shortsighted to see the possibilities presented by the U.N or because they were simply too greedy. I will not go into specifics because these are already too well documented to spend time on here. Suffice it to say that smaller nations have sought to use the U.N as a sort of "world government" while the larger nations have sought to use it as a policing organization to promote their own agendas as often as not to promote peace. This leads us to the question of "What should the U.N's future be if any?" The future is simple. Look at it as follows.

A) The Constitution of the United States is by no means perfect and by no means all inclusive of the rights and responsibilities of Americans. The text was meant to be one of peace and liberty but it has been repeatedly twisted by political factions of right and sometimes left to serve a political agenda. It has utterly failed to prevent non-elected leaders from taking office and it has also failed to ensure a properly working system of checks and balances. The text failed because we the people whose duty it is to uphold it have willingly made changes that have adversely affected its promise and ability. Despite our failings, we do not propose dumping it because on the whole, we believe it is the best governing system around and thus we continue hammering out changes hoping to constantly improve our system. This leads us to the next point.

B) The fact that a good idea fails is not a reason to give up on it. Do all Christians live up to the Ten Commandments? Has America or any other Democratic nation ever lived up to their ideals in their entirety? The answers are no. Should we turn our backs on these good ideas simply because they failed? The answer is no. Critics of the U.N focus only on the bad. What of the good? Where would we be if there WERE NO U.N? Would we rather the entire world separate again into multitudes of military alliances? Would we rather go back to the days when all of our disputes were answered by wars and threats? Would we rather go back to the days when something was "right" or "wrong" depending entirely on the might of one's military rather than one's cause and justification? Would we rather go back to the days of no internationally acceptable medium of accountability? The answer to all these questions must be no.

We must not give up on the U.N by pulling our membership or sending a hater of that organization to be our spokesman. If we truly believe in what our own Constitution says, we will work to improve the U.N and then if it still fails to live up to its promise, at least we will know we did our part. Instead of working to improve it, the U.S is becoming as bad as the other agenda-biased nations. The U.N is suppose to be a congress for peace, not political maneuvering. If we live for freedom and peace, we will continue working towards that goal with the U.N. If we value the prestige of our nation over all others at the cost of our fellow human beings, we will sacrifice its possibility the day we attack the U.N, whether by pulling out or sending our dimmest and dumbest to serve there.

Joseph - The New Oklahoma Democrat

First of all let me just say excellent job to Liberty Dog on this one. I completely agree. I'm keeping this short, cause I really couldn't have said it any better than Liberty Dog already has. You all know that my pet peeve is the ACLU, an organization that I believe is the most dangerous organization in America. Well, as for the U.N., I think they are even more dangerous. The most dangerous organization in the world.
This organization is so far away from its orginal intentions. They are so corrupted, I believe they are beyond repair. Not only did they line their pockets with blood money in the oil for food scandal, but they are involved in so many scandals it is just sickening.
"The range of sexual abuse includes reported rapes of young Congolese girls by U.N. troops; an Internet pedophile ring run from Congo by Didier Bourguet, a senior U.N. official from France; a colonel from South Africa accused of molesting his teenage male translators; and estimates of hundreds of underage girls having babies fathered by U.N. soldiers who have been able to simply leave their children and their crimes behind." Source
When I watched how scarred one little girl was by this on FOX News...I actually cried. This organization does absolutely nothing good for the world. It is completely corrupted by evil and greed. It does not serve its intended purpose, and it should simply be dismatled. There is no hope for reform in this organization. No hope.
They do no good for the world anyway, so I would not miss seeing them completely disappear. Perhaps we need some kind of organization to help diplomacy between countries, but the U.N. is completely impotent in this, and their threats wouldn't scare a fly because they never follow up on them. They are a lot of talk and no action, unless that action is raping little girls, or starving innocent people to line their own pockets. I have absolutely no sympathy for the U.N. Point blank, I have more mercy for the ACLU, in which I place a tiny bit of hope for reform. This organization has no hope, and I would celebrate if they were completely gone.

John - Stop the ACLU

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