The United Nations gets a bad rap but for all the wrong reasons. While a read of the UN’s charter reinforces what we think the UN should be – an impartial arbiter that helps mediate global conflicts as well as assist nations with economic development, the truth is it is a weakened, compromised, impotent body but that’s America’s fault more than anything else.
Right wingers have traditionally hated the United Nations because they feel it is somehow going to force its internationalness on the United States and that it acts against America’s interest. These views are more the results of illogical xenophobia than anything else.
The truth is the United Nations does America’s bidding and if America can’t get what it wants it goes around the United Nations or just refuses to pay its dues (The US currently owes the United Nations 1.3 billion dollars).
UN failures are many and well-documented – Not moving effectively to stop genocide in Rwanda, Even after the Khmer Rouge was no longer in power, recognizing them as the diplomatic representative of Cambodia for many years afterwards, recognizing Taiwan as the representative for China for many years after the Communist revolution.
But each and every one of its failures tie back to the US. The US (and European countries) prevented the UN from taking action in Rwanda, and were responsible for the Cambodia and China representation situations as well.
People complain that the UN is unfairly biased against Israel but they ignore the creation of the state of Israel – A colonial construct funded by rich Zionists and created through ethnic cleansing. The only forum for redress the Palestinians and the victims of Israeli militarism and lack of respect for human lives have is the United Nations. The fact that Israel never has to face the passage of a negative resolution for its behavior due to US vetoes is very telling but not without the historical precedent of the Zionist terrorist group Lehi (which included future Israeli Prime Minster Yitzak Shamir) murdering UN negotiator Count Folke Bernadotte in 1948 (No one has ever faced justice for that crime) and the Clinton administration preventing UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros Ghali from having a second term due to his insistence on not letting the matter of Israeli massacres of civilians in Qana Lebanon drop.
There is much to complain about the UN – From bribery scandals to sex tourism and sexual assault charges against UN peacekeepers to a Human Rights Council that often included countries like Libya but all these problems are a result of the UN not being its own boss. A United Nations that functioned in its envisioned role of a non-aligned global body would better be able to police itself.
But having a weak UN allowed the US and Russia to fight each other for supremacy during the Cold War in a series of dirty wars around the globe and in a uni-polar world the US does not want to allow its control to be challenged.
It is my contention the United States likes a weak, toothless United Nations. Hope for a stronger UN must be tied to an end to US hegemony and end to the US as the world’s only superpower.