Kofi break II
Take a look at this absolutely bizarre article by Kofi Annan in the LA Times.
If this does not prove that the U.N. is nothing more than a university with a frightening degree of influence in the world, I don't know what does.
The beauty of the article, however, is its contradictions. Absorb this quote:
Is state sovereignty an absolute principle, or does the international community
have a responsibility to prevent or resolve conflicts within states especially
when they involve genocide or comparable atrocities?
If I read this correctly, intervention in the internal affairs of a state engaged in genocide is potentially acceptable. And I need remind nobody that that was one of several justifications for the American intervention in Iraq which Kofi has called "illegal". But what are the "comparable atrocities" that would justify intervention? The very fact that sovereignty is not an absolute in Annan's little mind should frighten anyone. The U.N. was meant to be a brokerage of disputes, not a greater sovereign. And enjoy this morsel:
The report reaffirms the right of states to defend themselves, including
preemptively when an attack is imminent, and says that in "nightmare scenarios"
for instance, those combining terrorists and weapons of mass destruction the
U.N. Security Council may have to act earlier, more proactively and more
decisively than in the past. And it offers guidelines to help the Security
Council decide when to authorize the use of force both in dealing with
external threats and in exercising its responsibility to protect people from
mass atrocities committed within the borders of a sovereign state.
This is comforting. States retain the right to defend themselves. The less than funny part is that this IS a real concession, given the unmitigated deference and indirect support (see Oil-For-Food) that the U.N. has previously accorded terrorist groups and malignant dictators, and the criticism that the war in Iraq has drawn.
But more to the point, would the criteria he lays out here, given the intelligence we had in late 2002, have militated in favor of a Security Council endorsement of military action in Iraq notwithstanding what was later found (or not found)?
But here's the big issue...how does any of this jibe with anything we have seen the United Nations do over the past 3 years? They won't abide the U.S. entering Iraq, but somehow attacking a nation which every other civilized nation reasonably believed possessed WMDs, based on verified past use of same, present efforts to obtain same, and apparent efforts to hide same, and support for and cooperation with international terror organizations is permissible when faces with an "imminent threat"? Forgetting the imminent part, isn't this what we did? And national sovereignty is secondary to human rights? Why then is the United Nations not applauding the improvement in position for the Iraqi people since April 2003? They are free to worship and speak as they please, which never happened in the 30 years before, when Saddam set up his own desert killing fields. But somehow that doesn't matter.
Don't bother pondering. Annan's article is pure twaddle. The U.N. is not changing anytime soon, and all of these academic exercises will come to zilch. It will remain a place where totalitarianism finds its voice against the world's free nations, and where the U.S.'s influence is curbed (while it's money is accepted) at every turn.