I see that Biden mentioned the United Nations today. I had completely forgotten about them and didn't miss the UN. Bush 43 made them nearly irrelevant, and Obama didn't do much to bring them back, just a few nods. Trump delivered what I thought at the time was a crushing blow. Maybe it still will be. It is a collection of tyrannies manipulating the use of power, moribund European socialists claiming moral authority for no clear reason, and useless sons of third-world kleptocracies collecting their fat checks. In between times, they have these paste-up armies that specialise in raping helpless children.
Suddenly there is this idea they will be useful in the Middle East. I'm sure they must have been valuable somewhere, just by law of averages. But I can't recall where that was off the top of my head.
The peace-keeping contingent in Liberia pumped a lot of money into the economy.
Well, that's something. Did they do it with any efficiency, or was it byproduct?
Several NGO's had the bright idea of teaching former fighters about furniture-making, and many troops arranged to ship home furniture. There may have been other things too, that I didn't hear about. And of course the troops wanted food, and clothing, various (imported) goods, and presumably services as well.
It wasn't the plan, of course. When the first noises about withdrawing UN troops sounded, some Liberian high-ups panicked--what were they going to tax now without that infusion of hard currency?
It is a collection of tyrannies manipulating the use of power, moribund European socialists claiming moral authority for no clear reason, and useless sons of third-world kleptocracies collecting their fat checks. In between times, they have these paste-up armies that specialise in raping helpless children.
Do you remember collecting pennies for UNICEF during your childhood? I do. I recall my parents and their peers being big supporters of the UN. It would be very disappointing for them to see how the UN has turned out. (I do refer to the UN's FAO agricultural stats, so it is good for something.)Though those of their generation who lived longer lives would already have seen that. The big disappointment for many came after the fall of the Soviet Union. Previously, it was easy to view disappointments in the UN being the result of Soviet power plays. Absent the Soviet Union, one could no longer use that excuse.
Recall how Bush the elder lined up the UN Security Council to support military action against Saddam Hussein if he didn't leave Kuwait within the time allotted (was it 6 months?). I found it disappointing to see so many liberals, who had been preaching forever that we should follow the dictates of the UN, decide to NOT follow the UN regarding military action against Saddam Hussein. The decision of over 80% of the Senate Democrats to vote against Gulf War I showed me that Democrats brought domestic politics to foreign policy decisions. That convinced me that in future elections, I'd never vote for the Democrat candidate for President.
The New Republic was in that era not the extreme partisan rag it is today. IIRC, it published a letter that Senator Kerry's office had sent to a constituent- after the end of Gulf War I- stating how the Senator had supported military action against Saddam. Senator Kerry was among the Senate Democrats who voted against military action against Saddam. Give peace a chance, donch'a know.
"In the matter of reforming things, as distinct from deforming them, there is one plain and simple principle; a principle which will probably be called a paradox. There exists in such a case a certain institution or law; let us say for the sake of simplicity, a fence or gate erected across a road. The more modern type of reformer goes gaily up to it and says, 'I don’t see the use of this; let us clear it away.'
To which the more intelligent type of reformer will do well to answer: 'If you don’t see the use of it, I certainly won’t let you clear it away. Go away and think. Then, when you can come back and tell me that you do see the use of it, I may allow you to destroy it.'"
— G. K. Chesterton
Assistant Village Idiot: It is a collection of tyrannies manipulating the use of power
That's representative — and rather the point.
Assistant Village Idiot: In between times, they have these paste-up armies that specialise in raping helpless children.
Assistant Village Idiot: Suddenly there is this idea they will be useful in the Middle East.
Suddenly? U.N. peacekeeping forces have been instrumental in maintaining the peace between Egypt and Israel for 30 years.
The U.S. helped with the transition of power in Liberia after the Liberian Civil War. There are currently twelve U.N. peacekeeping missions around the world.
So long at the UN is funded primarily by the US and West without a corresponding say in how it is spent, a vast contingent of diplomats and staff from the entire world descend on NYC for a good time. They then sell their votes for further graft to bad actors the world over.
A fixed amount per capita of dues would sharpen their minds considerably. The recent performance of the WHO during COVID should have brought a response from the UN members but only silence is heard.
One last thought, perhaps all heads of UN organizations should be Swiss by decree.
Z: U.N. peacekeeping forces have been instrumental in maintaining the peace between Egypt and Israel for 30 years.
Sorry. That was incorrect. Multinational Force and Observers (MFO) is an international peacekeeping force, but not under the U.N. MFO has been in place for 40 years. Here is a map of active and completed U.N. missions (including some in the Middle East):
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