THE UN's RIGGED STANDARDS
By Alan Nathan
FrontPageMagazine.com | October 20, 2006
The UN’s partisans have a formula for dealing with the nuclear threat of North Korea: just sit back and relax as once more America begs legitimacy from the illegitimate. Unable to voir dire the UN Security Council as we do any other jury, all conflicts of interests shall impede the Council’s professed interests, and that dynamic will again show our inability to lead the world in its nuclear square-off with North Korea. Why do we pathetically allow ourselves to be subjected to a rigged measure and then whine about not measuring up?
Our role in the UN gives a limitless advantage to those whom we might otherwise deter. Providing a non-representative government has an alliance with any of the five permanent members comprising the Security Council (Russia, China, France, Britain and the U.S.), that regime is guaranteed the latitude necessary to continue that which the members might rhetorically oppose but never truly combat. Only a potentially cataclysmic act will motivate the Council to apply the binding Chapter Seven military option that would physically implement any resolution – oh wait, that "act" already came from North Korea and still no enforcement provision. Sorry, I lost my head.
Understanding that any meaningful reform is at the mercy of those who would be governed by it, leaving this discredited international body has become unnervingly overdue. Most disquieting are the UN apologists on Capitol Hill who demand greater success at pressuring China and Russia to get onboard against North Korea and Iran, but then characterize such pressure as divisive once attempted – another rigged measure.
On July 28th of this year, America’s UN Ambassador John Bolton faced Senate hearings to consider extending his term. Connecticut Democratic Senator Chris Dodd announced, "Mr. Bolton publicly assured anyone who would listen that he could get support for a resolution with teeth, with so-called Chapter 7 obligations – turns out, of course, he couldn't." But after Bolton reaffirmed his view that the UN’s ineffective system for conflict resolution should be reformed so as to permit success, Dodd retorted that Bolton clearly "has an aversion, in my view, to being diplomatic or to building consensus for U.S. positions. And that is deeply troubling to me." Mr. Dodd refused to say at what point our obligation to "show" becomes their responsibility to "see" – another rigged measure.
Delaware Democratic Senator and likely 2008 presidential candidate Joe Biden claimed that Bolton was inadequate in his efforts to bring about enforcement of UN Resolution 1559 – the measure demanding a Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon and a full disarmament of Hezbollah and other terrorist groups on Lebanese soil – which he argued could have preempted the Hezbollah-Israeli conflict. Bolton answered that the UN doesn’t have the forces to implement said enforcement. Strangely, the politico’s holding us accountable for the inertia caused by the UN’s formulaic obstacles are the same ones crying "unilateralists" whenever we challenge those obstacles – another rigged measure.
We’re behaving like the idiot who retains his father-in-law as a divorce lawyer and then wonders why he couldn't settle for less alimony.
Have these politicians become so isolated as to believe that we don’t see the cross-purpose absurdity that defines the UN. Its defenders know that we can’t do anything meaningful about a rogue state if permission must first come from the allies of that state. They also know that the dominant worldview still believes in its legitimacy because they’re mostly unaware of that systemic contradiction with justice – another rigged measure.
Now we have North Korea insisting that UN Resolution 1718 condemning their October 9th nuclear test is tantamount to a "declaration of war" and that those carrying out the resolution’s sanctions will be dealt "merciless blows." Well they don’t have much to worry about because while the Resolution requires member states to prevent the transfer of material, funds, military items and weapons technologies, it only allows (but doesn’t require) the inspection mechanisms necessary to fulfill the Security Council’s supposed mandate. Also, because there’s no Chapter 7 component to 1718, member states have no right to apply even targeted military force to achieve that which they’ve been ordered to accomplish – another rigged measure.
Only by making the UN an election issue of consequence can we get out of it. The evidence justifying this demand is both numerically and principally overwhelming. As should have been reported more openly, outgoing UN Secretary General Kofi Annan was nailed by the very Independent Inquiry Commission (IIC)he called to investigate the Oil-for-Food Program scandal.
Originally a plan to insulate the Iraqi’s health and medical needs from sanctions against Saddam Hussein, it devolved into a system of graft for the Sunni dictator. The IIC found that during the programs last three years, all 10,000 contracts had corruption written in them and that Kofi Annan deliberately shielded that information from the Security Council – this forever casts him an accessory after the fact. Nothing happened to Annan and no reform of substance has since occurred at the dysfunctional world body.
The UN’s mission is peace and harmony; leaving because we recognize its members’ camouflaged opposition to that mission doesn’t put us at odds with its goals; it merely puts us at odds with their abandonment of those goals – an honest measure!
Alan Nathan, combative centrist, columnist, speaker and the nationally syndicated host of "Battle Line With Alan Nathan" on the Radio America Network.