Thursday, September 23, 2004

The U.N.

Victor Davis Hanson has a good article on the U.N. I just want to touch on a small part of it. Why the silence at the Presidents speech?

First, the U.N. is not the idealistic postwar organization of our collective Unicef and Unesco nostalgia, the old perpetual force for good that we once associated with hunger relief and peacekeeping. Its membership is instead rife with tyrannies, theocracies and Stalinist regimes. Many of them, like Algeria, Cuba, Iran, Vietnam and Zimbabwe, have served on the U.N.'s 53-member Commission on Human Rights. The Libyan lunocracy--infamous for its dirty war with Chad and cash bounties to mass murderers--chaired the 2003 session. For Mr. Bush to talk to such folk about the need to spread liberty means removing from power, or indeed jailing, many of the oppressors sitting in his audience.

This goes right to the heart of the matter. How can you talk about liberty when a good amount of the people you are talking to, do not want it? More than half of the population of the world lives under tyranical regimes and yet, we let the leaders of those countries head the Commision on Human Rights and make votes about liberty in the U.N. Does this make any sense whatsoever?
Second, urging democratic reforms in Palestine, as Mr. Bush also outlined, is antithetical to the very stuff of the U.N., an embarrassing reminder that nearly half of its resolutions in the past half-century have been aimed at punishing tiny democratic Israel at the behest of its larger,more populous--and dictatorial--Arab neighbors. The contemporary U.N., then, has become not only hypocritical, but also a bully that hectors Israel about the West Bank while it gives a pass to a nuclear, billion-person China after swallowing Tibet; wants nothing to do with the two present dangers to world peace, a nuclear North Korea and soon to follow theocratic Iran; and idles while thousands die in the Sudan.

Embarrassing? To the U.N.? I'd have to say no to this. They think most of the woes in the Middle East are the fault of one tiny country. Here's a thought. Since Israel is the only democracy in the area and all the other countries around it are controlled by nut jobs, who want to destroy them, don't you think it's the other countries fault that the region is so unbalanced? We're talking about a country that is at it's widest point maybe 70 miles wide and 240 miles long. It's all their fault?

And, do we really need to take an orginisation serious when they will condemn Israel and ignore Rwanda and Sudan?
Third, the present secretary-general, Kofi Annan, is himself a symbol of all that is wrong with the U.N. A multibillion dollar oil-for-food fraud, replete with kickbacks (perhaps involving a company that his own son worked for), grew unchecked on his watch, as a sordid array of Baathist killers, international hustlers and even terrorists milked the national petroleum treasure of Iraq while its own people went hungry. In response, Mr. Annan stonewalls, counting on exemption from the New York press on grounds of his unimpeachable liberal credentials. Meanwhile, he prefers to denigrate the toppling of Saddam Hussein as "illegal," but neither advocates reinstitution of a "legal" Saddam nor offers any concrete help to Iraqis crafting consensual society. Like the U.N. membership itself, he enjoys the freedom, affluence and security of a New York, but never stops to ask why that is so or how it might be extended to others less fortunate.

Victor is all over it today, isn't he? What has the U.N. done in regards to Iraq? Well, for 12 years they ignored it. All they managed to do was make 17 resolutions, that they promply ignored. When someone finally decides to do something, it's called illegal, although if Mr. Annan took the time to read resolution 1441, he would know that the invasion of Iraq was not only legal, but that it was called for by Hussiens own actions.

We then find out that member states not only ignored those resolutions but were making money OFF THE BACKS OF THE IRAQI PEOPLE. What's done about that? Nothing, at first, Annan doesn't want his poor boy to be tried, now does he? Then, we get an investigation that can do nothing because it isn't given the proper tools to do anything.

You may think I'm going to call for the U.S. to leave the U.N. You'd be wrong. I think one of two things need to happen. Either the U.N. starts to take it's role seriously, by getting rid of member states who do not believe in freedom and actually doing what it says it will do. Or, just call itself a debate society, that's what it is now, and be done with it.

If, and only if, one those things aren't done, the U.S. should pull out of it and maybe broaden the scope of the NATO alliance or form a new style of the U.N. The old way is not working.

Oh, and I think the U.N. should go to Geneva.