United Nations

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United Nations

الأمم المتحدة
联合国
Organisation des Nations unies
Организация Объединённых Наций
Organización de las Naciones Unidas

UN1.jpg

Headquarters International Territory, within New York City, New York.[1]
Official Languages Arabic Chinese English French Russian Spanish
Membership 193 Member countries, as of Jan. 2012
Leaders
  • Secretary General = Ban Ki-Moon
  • General Assembly President = Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser
  • Security Council President = Baso Sangqu

United Nations Charter signed 26 June 1945

Entry into force of Charter 24 October 1945


The United Nations is a globalist organization of countries all over the world, originally created to facilitate cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, and human rights. It was founded in 1945 in San Francisco at the signing of the United Nations Charter by 51 countries, replacing the League of Nations, founded in 1919. The UN currently has 192 members, including almost all the countries in the world. Non-members include Taiwan and Vatican City. Switzerland finally joined in 2002.[2] The United Nations typically supports liberal, environmental and even socialist ideals.[3][4][5]


Contents

History

The term "United Nations" was widely used during World War II to denote the allied powers making war against Germany and Japan, but the actual UN was created in 1945. It was designed by the U.S. State Department. President Franklin D. Roosevelt envisaged "four policemen", Britain, United States, Soviet Union, and Republic of China to be the major forces on what later became the UN Security Council to enforce the peace worldwide. This was deemed a modern approach to replace the old spheres of influence as they were called during the age of Imperialism.

US Secretary of State Cordell Hull said at the time while selling the idea to Congress, "there will no longer be need for spheres of influence, for alliances, for balance of power, or any other of the separate alliances through which in the unhappy past the nations strove to safeguard their security or promote their interest."

American enthusiasm for the UN soured after the Soviet Union vetoed most resolutions of the Security Council. However the Soviets boycotted the UN in 1950, allowing the UN to officially sponsor the Korean War. In practice, the U.S. made all the decisions for the UN regarding that war. When the Soviets returned in 1951, soo too did stalemate, and the UN played a minor role in the Cold War.

The western military alliance of NATO began in 1949 and played a much greater role in US foreign policy commitments and decisions during the Cold War than the UN ever did. The one exception was the Korean War, which was fought under UN auspices since the Soviet Union was boycotting the UN in 1950.

Organization

Flag of the International Atomic Energy Agency

The main deliberative organ is the General Assembly which usually meets annually in September with representation by all member states. The General Assembly votes on the annual budget of the United Nations, elects members to other UN organs and committees, and makes non-binding recommendations to member states through resolutions.

The Security Council handles matters relating to international peace and stability. It consists of five permanent members (USA, UK, France, Russia and PR China), and ten temporary members, which are elected by the General Assembly for two-year terms. The Security Council decides by vote. On substantive issues, nine members must support the proposal, including all five permanent members, giving each permanent member an effective veto power. The chair of the Security Council rotates each month among its members, in alphabetic order.

International Court of Justice

The International Court of Justice, based in The Hague, was founded to settle conflicts and disputes over questions arising from the interpretation of treaties among member states. It only may entertain [6] cases where all parties to the case in question have agreed to recognize the jurisdiction of the Court. The Court also advices other organs and agencies of the United Nations on questions of the interpretation of treaties.

Other Sections

The United Nations Economic and Social Council is a deliberative and advisory organ dedicated to promoting international economic and social cooperation and development. It cooperates with the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank Group and similar international agencies.

The United Nations Secretariat is responsible for the day-to-day administration of the UN system. The head of the Secretariat is the Secretary-General, who is nominated by the Security Council and appointed by the General Assembly for renewable five-year terms. The current Secretary-General is Ban Ki-moon, the former Foreign Minister of the Republic of Korea. It is customary to let the position rotate among the different world regions.

Criticism

The U.N. has at various times in its history been accused of inefficiency and waste, which some critics have attributed to its cumbersome and excessive bureaucracy. Probably the most controversial issue with the United Nations is the Oil-for-Food scandal.

As a meeting place for many different nations, the UN can only act as a mechanism for international consensus. The UN has been unable to act in a clear and decisive way when confronted crises in which this consensus is not present. Recent examples include the Iranian nuclear program and the genocides in Darfur, Sudan and Rwanda. Because each of the five permanent members of the Security Council have a veto, and because they often disagree, many times no action can be agreed upon. Typically but not always this division includes the United States on one side with either China, Russia or both on the other. Other times the Security Council has been able to agree but lacks the will or means to enforce its resolutions. A recent example is the 2006 Israel-Lebanon Crisis, where no action has been taken to enforce the provisions of Resolution 1559 and Resolution 1701 to disarm terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah. There usually are no consequences for violating a Security Council resolution.

Alex Jones, a paleoconservative believes that the United Nations is plotting to take over the world along with the Bilderberg organization. Some believe the United Nations will be the one world government mentioned in Revelation.

Inclusion on the old United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) of nations such as Sudan and Libya, whose leaderships have dubious records on human rights, and Libya's chairmanship of this Commission, has been a highly controversial issue.

The UN headquarters, on the east side of Manhattan, opened its doors on January 10th, 1951.

The U.N. has been accused of hypocritical conduct and double standards. The U.N. condemns Israel for its conduct toward the Palestinians, yet it refuses to condemn China for its conduct toward the Tibetans. [7]

The United Nations has on many occasions ignored the plight of people across the world, especially in parts of Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Current examples include the UN's inaction toward the Sudanese government in Darfur, the Chinese government's ethnic cleansing in Tibet, and the Israel-Arab conflict. [8]

During the Rwandan genocide the UN did not authorize UNAMIR to intervene or use force to prevent or halt the killing.

Promoting Abortion

The Committee for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) pushes countries to promote abortion. [9]

Arab-Israel dispute

B'nai B'rith magazine gives a Jewish view of the UN, winter 2009 online
A General Assembly resolution led to the partition of Palestine in 1947, but the UN was useless in preventing armed Arab aggression against the new State of Israel in 1948. Increasingly the General Assembly became a forum for Arab attacks on Israel.

The UN has taken a one-sided approach to issues relating to the Israel-Arab conflict. Israel has consistently been singled out by the UN for uniquely critical treatment. In 1975 the General Assembly passed a resolution declaring that "Zionism is racism" [10], and UN-sponsored meetings supposedly opposing racism have criticized Israel (which grants equal political and religious rights to Arabs) while suppressing all criticism of those Arab countries (where non-Muslims are second-class citizens and anti-Semitism enjoys state support).

Unlike other refugee groups, the Palestinian Arabs have their own agency within the United Nations, and are beneficiaries of special events such as an "International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People."[11] Israel was excluded from membership in any of the UN's regional groups until 2000. In effect, this meant Israel was forbidden from serving on UN bodies such as the Security Council. Israel's recent permission to participate more fully within the UN as a member of the Western European and Others regional group is temporary and subject to renewal. Israel is allowed to participate only in the New York operations of the UN and is excluded from the UN offices in Geneva, Nairobi, Rome and Vienna which handle such issues as human rights and arms control. Censure of Israel has apparently been instituted as a routine agenda item for various UN bodies such as the Human Rights Council. The 1975 Resolution 3379 qualified Zionism as a form of racism (later revoked with Resolution 4686).

Defending Islam

The United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon condemned Geert Wilders's controversial film "Fitna", while stating "freedom of expression is not at stake here." [12]

The U.N.'s Human Rights Council passed a resolution that directs the body’s expert on free speech to report on “individuals and news media for negative comments on Islam.” [13] This suppression of free speech at an organization purporting to fairly represent the world's nations in a common forum is one of numerous actions in the past decade that has undermined U.N. credibility.

Contemporary US Criticism

Some American critics view the UN as an agent for eroding the Sovereignty of the United States and instead promoting forms of world government. Some claim that President Bill Clinton rejected and ignored the position of the United Nations when he ordered U.S. military "police actions" in foreign countries. President George W. Bush also rejected the inaction of the UN when he authorized military action against the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq for ignoring various UN resolutions. Some commentators now feel that it has since devolved into a radical debating society which has ironically blocked most of the goals for which it has been formed. [14]

U.N. Commissions

One of the major reasons the United Nations is considered by some to be useless is the Security Council. Along with other countries elected for a term of years, the United States, the United Kingdom, Russia, China and France all have a permanent seat, along with the power to veto any decision made by the Security Council. When combined with the Security Council's role as voting on most major issues, including military intervention, and the tendency for most resolutions introduced to be vetoed by one or more nations, the Security Council and by extension the United Nations has become ineffective. The U.N. at times places member states in commissions or positions of importance which many believe they don't deserve. The following is a sample of some of those nations and the positions of importance they have been placed in (this list does not include members that are on those commissions and deserve their place).

The following programs expose the U.N.'s incompetence by placing unworthy member states in positions of importance; [15]

U.N. Human Rights Council

Mission: "…responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all….”
Members: Saudi Arabia, China, Vice-Presidents: Cuba, Angola. Libya was kicked off in February.

U.N. Commission on the Status of Women

Mission: “…set global standards and formulate concrete policies to promote gender equality and advancement of women worldwide."
Members: The Democratic Republic of Congo, Iran

U.N. Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice

Mission: “…set…out global strategy to prevent crime and promote stable criminal justice systems...and improving the efficiency and fairness of criminal justice administration systems."
Members: Libya, Russia, Sudan, Iran, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Pakistan

U.N. Women

Mission: “…support, address and contribute to gender equality and the empowerment and the advancement of women…”
Members: Executive Board: Libya, Saudi Arabia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, China

U.N. Economic and Social Council

Mission: “…responsible for: promoting higher standards of living, full employment, and economic and social progress…encouraging universal respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms…"
Members: Saudi Arabia

U.N. Commission on Sustainable Development

Mission: "...to promote dialogue and build partnerships for sustainable development with major groups include[ing] women, youth, indigenous peoples, non-governmental organizations, local authorities, workers and trade unions, business and industry, the scientific community, and farmers…"
Members: Angola, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia

U.N. Commission on Social Development

Mission: “….promoting full employment and decent work for all...Improving public sector effectiveness....National and international cooperation for social development..."
Members: Cuba, Egypt, Zimbabwe

U.N. Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations

Mission: “…The consideration of applications for consultative status [with the UN]…submitted by NGOs…”
Members: Sudan, Cuba, Pakistan, China

U.N. Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT)

Mission: “…promote socially and environmentally sustainable towns and cities with the goal of providing adequate shelter for all…security of tenure and equal access to economic resources for all, with a specific focus on gender equality.”
Members: Governing Council: Iran

U.N. Committee on Information

Mission: “To promote the establishment of a new, more just and more effective world information and communication order…based on the free circulation and wider and better-balanced dissemination of information…”
Members: China, Libya, Kazakhstan, Iran

U.N. Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Mission: “….advocate for the protection of children's rights, to help meet their basic needs and to expand their opportunities to reach their full potential…”
Members: Executive Board: Sudan, China

U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees

Mission: “…safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees.”
Members: Executive Committee: Lebanon, Somalia, Sudan

U.N. World Food Programme

Mission: “advocate policies, strategies and operations that directly benefit the poor and hungry."
Members: Executive Board: Sudan

UN Peacekeepers Child Sexual Abuse

The United Nations since its founding has been enmeshed in various scandals.

In July 1997 the UN announced an investigation into United Nations Peacekeeping Forces in Cote d'Ivoire on charges of widespread sexual abuse with a large number of underage girls. [16] More than 300 members of UN peacekeeping missions around the world have been investigated for sexual exploitation and abuse since 2004, including some stationed in Congo, Cambodia and Haiti. [17]

Incidents

  • 1998 - Bosnia [18]
  • 2003 - Nepalese troops accused of sexual abuse while serving in DR Congo. Six are later jailed
  • 2004 - Two UN peacekeepers repatriated after being accused of abuse in Burundi
  • 2005 - UN troops accused of rape and sexual abuse in Sudan [19]
  • 2006 - UN personnel accused of rape and exploitation on missions is Haiti and Liberia
  • 2007 - UN launches probe into sexual abuse claims in Ivory Coast

Notable roles of U.S. Ambassadors to the U.N.

  • 1981-1985, Jeane Kirkpatrick - Denunciated the Soviet Union for the Sept. 1, 1983 shootdown of Korean Airlines Flight 007 in international airspace just west of Sakhalin Island.

Further reading

  • Pubantz, Jerry, ed. Encyclopedia of the United Nations (2nd ed. 2008), useful basic guide to all activities
  • Weiss, Thomas G., and Sam Daws, eds. The Oxford Handbook on the United Nations (2009), 848pp; articles by scholars excerpt and text search
  • Weiss, Thomas G. The United Nations and Changing World Politics (6th ed. 2009), 504pp; solid college textbook and text search

External links

See Also

External links

Sites critical of the U.N.

See Also

References

  1. There are some caveats; It is administered by the United Nations, and Subject only to International Law, but is still part of the United States.
  2. [1]
  3. Kincaid, Cliff. The Plan For Socialist World Government. Accuracy in Media. Retrieved on 2010-02-06.
  4. United Nations. Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation. Retrieved on 2010-02-06.
  5. Liberal equals socialist equals communitarian equals Fabian society equals Agenda 21. middletownca.com. Retrieved on 2010-02-06.
  6. International Court of Justice, How the Court works, retrieved 26 April 2007.
  7. The U.N.'s Hypocrisy in Tibet, Joseph Klein, Front Page Magazine, March 28, 2008
  8. IBD Editorial, U.N. Fiddles As China Torches Tibet, retrieved 30 March 2008.
  9. United Nations Committee Pushes Countries to Promote Abortion in CEDAW Mtg, Samantha Singson, Life News, February 15, 2008
  10. 16/12/1991, A/RES/46/86, Elimination of racism and racial discrimination/Zionism
  11. UN Web Site for International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, retried June 29, 2007
  12. U.N.'s Ban condemns Dutch film as anti-Islamic, Reuters, March 28, 2008.
  13. The United Nations: Islam’s Gestapo, Stephen Brown, Front Page Magazine, April 11, 2008
  14. Why the Security Council Failed, Michael J. Glennon, Foreign Affairs, May/June 2003.
  15. U.N. Hypocrisy On Full Display, Fox News, March 4, 2011
  16. U.N. suspends peacekeepers amid sex abuse charges, CNN, July 21, 2007.
  17. UN probes 'abuse' in Ivory Coast, BBC, July 23, 2007.
  18. Teenagers 'used for sex by UN in Bosnia', By Stewart Payne, London Telegraph, 25/04/2002.
  19. UN staff accused of raping children in Sudan, By Kate Holt in Juba and Sarah Hughes, London Telegraph, 04/01/2007.
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