United Nations of Futility
The pen is mightier than the sword, or so the old saying goes. This idea springs from the notion that instead of sending an army to force an idea upon a populace, mass distribution of knowledge can have the same effect, without the need for bloodshed. It’s a noble and enlightened thought, as it’s always preferable to resolve conflict through words rather than weapons. However, when words fail and the need grow dire, the pen becomes useless and it becomes necessary to pick up a sword.
This is where the United Nations comes in, as they are experts in the use of a pen. Zimbabwe, Africa… garden spot of that war-torn continent. Once President Mugabe, who since his election has become ruthless in holding onto and consolidating his power, has forced a run-off election after losing a recent election to his opponent Morgan Tsvangirai. Tsvangirai won by a slim margin, and Mugabe challenged. Since then, there have been reports that Mugabe has threatened riots and has made people vote for him at gun point. So, as the run-off election approached, Tsvangirai had to back out because he feared or his life. (Could you have imagined if something similar had happened here after the disputed 2000 Presidential election? God bless America.)
The U.S. immediately called for a free and fair election, and when one was not forthcoming, President Bush called for arms sanctions and travel restrictions. Some sanctions are already in place.
CNN.com – In 2003, President Bush imposed sanctions on specific individuals and businesses in Zimbabwe, saying members of the government and its supporters were undermining democratic institutions there, according to the U.S. Treasury Department.
More than two years later, he expanded the list of sanctions to include immediate family members of Zimbabweans already sanctioned. People providing assistance to those individuals were also added to the list, the Treasury Department said.
Britain also has financial and travel sanctions against 160 Zimbabweans, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said this week, as he announced that Britain was ready to propose “intensified” financial and travel sanctions against members of the Zimbabwean regime.
So, how does the U.N handle this situation? They write Mugabe a letter, telling him how displeased and concerned they are with him. [sarcasm] Yeah, like that’s going to work. [/sarcasm] Haven’t we been down this road before? I remember the letter the U.N. sent to Somalia voicing their displeasure with the genocide there… Epic Fail. I remember the letter sent to Pakistan and India, saying that they shouldn’t be pursuing nuclear weapons… Epic Fail. I remember the letter sent to Saddam where they asked him nicely to show them certain facilities. He refused and kicked them out of the country… twice… Epic Fail. There have been many, many others.
At what point do they stop writing letters and start taking action? I guess this is the price we pay to have a world political body that has no real power and is full of countries that each have their own national interests at heart. I can’t blame countries, like Russia, China and even the U.S., for holding their own national interests above those of another country. It is the people of those countries who are protected their governments, and rightly so. However, if the U.N. can’t do anything about the problems of the world, then why do we still have it?
It seems to me that it only exists as a smokescreen, a way to legitimize foreign policy decisions, no matter what they are, so long as they are discussed before a world forum. The U.S. didn’t and doesn’t need permission to go in and take Saddam out, but they placated the world to an extent by going before the U.N. with their complaints. However, this was detrimental to our goals in Iraq, as the time we spent trying to convince the world that Saddam had weapons, was spent by Saddam sending his weapons to places like Syria.
Outdated, outmoded, corrupt, complacent and generally neutered of actual political power, all these describe the U.N. It’s time for the U.S. to withdraw from the U.N and stop supporting global organizations that want to do everything in their power to rob us of our rights under the U.S. Constitution, like the ICJ, who seeks to overrule U.S. Supreme Court decisions by claiming jurisdiction over American affairs. (see this article)
The U.S. is an independent and free nation, and it will not be ruled by the same Europeans who we had to forcibly remove from this continent over 200 years ago. We had to pick up a sword, as I don’t think a letter would have made King George up and leave.