U.N.wanted and U.N.necessary

Matthew White

Franklin D. Roosevelt’s great hope of global governance has proved to be a giant failure.

The United Nations was established shortly after World War II to protect peace, provide a forum for international discussion and promote freedom around the world. Almost immediately, it began to fail at each of these tasks.

In creating the United Nations, Roosevelt engaged Joseph Stalin, leader of the former Soviet Union, to help him design the world body.

According to historyguide.org, “By 1938 at least one million people were in prison, some 8.5 million had been arrested and sent to the gulag and nearly 800,000 had been executed,” under Stalin’s orders.

Because the Atlantic Charter (which marked the U.N.’s beginning) wasn’t signed until 1941, imagine how many more people Stalin’s peaceful interests benefited.

Drawing from Stalin’s early influence, the United Nations has consistently enabled intolerant regimes to remain in power while criticizing more democratic Western ones.

Take for instance, Iraq, a place of much turmoil. In all, the United Nations issued 17 Security Council resolutions and 29 additional statements against the nation from 1990 to 2002. While making all this “noise,” various member states were involved in fraud – the Oil-for-Food scandal – to cheat Iraqi civilians out of humanitarian aid and line the pockets of the corrupt regime.

Ultimately, the United Nations bloviated for years while Saddam Hussein committed genocide and chemical weapons attacks against his own people. The U.N. resolutions failed to secure peace (or protect freedom), and the United States was forced to remove the corrupt dictator.

More recently, the dictator of North Korea Kim Jong Il was welcomed to the U.N. headquarters, allowed to insult President Bush (in New York City, no less) and was not chastised for his nation’s poor humanitarian conditions.

According to Amnesty International, “For more than a decade, the people of North Korea – one of the most isolated nations on earth – have suffered from famine and acute food shortages. Hundreds of thousands of people have died and many millions more have suffered from chronic malnutrition.”

In an effort to keep such a horrible regime nuclear-free, the United States had to negotiate with China and Russia and agree that the sale of some conventional weapons would be allowed.

This provides insight into how ridiculous the United Nations is. Instead of standing up to a world leader who spends his nations’ money on supplying and outfitting an enormous army while his people starve, it forces the United States to negotiate what types of weapons can be sold. The fact that it allows weapons to be sold what-so-ever to the 21st century’s version of Hitler is outrageous.

The United States’ diplomacy and foreign policy can be conducted without the United Nations.

A U.N.-free foreign policy would allow for direct confrontation of rogue regimes before pre-emptive invasion is necessary.

As Winston Churchill said, “One ought never to turn one’s back on a threatened danger and try to run away from it. If you do that, you will double the danger. But if you meet it promptly and without flinching, you will reduce the danger by half.”

Matthew White is a senior magazine journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].