The wonderful inadequacies of the UN


Now I am never going to be the best sort of person to comment on such things, so take anything I say with a pinch of salt. Even so, I had to point out what I think is a failing in this understanding of the United Nations. The UN fails in doing exactly what it sets out to do in its charter. Don't Set Fire to Your Jacket comments.

This can hardly be surprising, if you set up a system where vastly disparate values are represented then you are unlikely to get a coherent voice.

Not only disparate views, but disparate politics, levels of human rights, free speech, economical development etc. The important point for Fire and Jacket was the seeming incompatibilities with the politics of some of those allowed into the UN and the charter. He (presumably) points out that the second and third clauses are basically demanding the political situation of democracy. I don't doubt that, there has been and will probably never be anything other than democracy which will be able to defend justice and human rights in quite such a comprehensive way. BUT the conclusion on the acceptance of such states which don't fully commit to these ideals is simply dangerous.

So it is interesting that McCain (and others) have postulated the idea of a "League of Democracies".

This league will be a condescending self-justifying group of states with the moral strength that allows them to invade the next Iraq and Afghanistan with whatever reason they cook up to suppress the apathetic political internal situations within the domestic scene. Maybe this is a little cynical and maybe its a little far fetched, but still it would create an in built coalition of the willing which will be ruled by the United States... or something.

Point 2. The reaction by the rest of the world will be constructive to create another bloc of themselves. A counter-point, but just as the democratic group will be solidified around an idea stronger than any ideology. The idea that their world, their sovereignty and their ways of life were under threat from a crusading force within the world.

The UN may fail at committing itself to the radical position that all within the world should be democratic and etc. But so what?! It does something far greater; it gives all states within the world a chance of having their voice heard at the 'highest' level of international society. The UN is a universal pressure valve that will only work if it keeps the pretence - and only the pretence - of an ideal.

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