Memo to the UN Security Council: – Government (300 Level Course)
I would like to take this opportunity to commend not only those members of the Security Council but all members of the United Nations as well for dedicating time, resources, and men to many causes circumventing the globe. But you forgot to do one thing, and that is to make any of these programs work. While they look good on paper they are often a disaster when put into effect.
The United Nations (U.N.) was set up in 1941 to provide “security and peace,” and then you self proclaimed yourselves as the body that would save “succeeding generations from the scourge of war.”(21) Yet in the most recent decade, the 1990’s, the world has suffered from 35 major wars, a major war being one with at least 1000 deaths.(22) Thirty-five wars is an amazing number, in just ten years. Still we all see the news headlines about the U.N. doing this and the U.N. doing that. Just what are you doing?
I in no way mean to imply that the U.N. is doing nothing to stop violence and threats to humanitarian efforts. I simply feel that the assembly is being hurt by one of two things. Either the U.N. is taking on too much and outstretching itself, using up its limited resources, or you are just going about everything the wrong way. A lack of commitment and aggressiveness has been an apparent problem and frankly the lack of force used until it is desperately needed just does not work in the violent world we live in.
If the U.N. was aggressive enough and took care of one relief effort before jumping hastily into another there would be no situations like the ones in Jerusalem, Pakistan and India, Lebanon, and Cyprus.(55) No aggressive steps were taken in these situations. Understandably they were all set up as monitoring and surveillance programs but in the cases of Jerusalem and Pakistan, the efforts of the U.N. have been in effect since 1948. That is over fifty years. Honestly, in over fifty years either action should have been initiated or deployment should have been ordered. These were mainly all targets of conflict because of the Cold War, a war that ended over ten years ago.
Yet as the world has changed so have the conflicts that have arisen. Conflicts in Croatia, Bosnia, Kosovo, and the Republic of Congo have become dangerous and deadly. A combination that is not conducive to non-violent peacekeeping efforts.(85) In today’s world with today’s problems the only way to survive, not even be successful, is to fight back. Member states would not, at least should not disagree to deployment of groups with defense weaponry. If any member is in disagreement then they are far too naïve to ever want to achieve success. Success in these missions is based upon the U.N. ability to survive the climate of conflict and try to either reach some kind of peace of keep what peace is usually there already. To be able to survive the U.N. must outfit their troops with the artillery needed for personal defense. And defense is the key word here. An aggressive defense is essential and while many feel that the possession of weapons by the U.N. is threatening in itself, too bad. The people sent in by the U.N. are highly skilled, trained, professional soldiers. They are not mercenaries who will only use weapons to wreck havoc on innocent people. Being aggressive is not the same as being the aggressor, and U.N. troops should never appear threatening. But if they do in an effort to defend them, that is just the way it must have to be.
I also feel that the U.N. and the Security Council should finally reach a separate identity void of the United States government. While it is true that the U.S. is a member of both the United Nations and the Security Council, arguably the most important member, the U.N. has from day one been terribly dependent on the United States. While the U.N. has been the brain we have been the brawn. As it is, the U.S. is the most powerful and influential country in the world but it must be realized that the U.S. and the U.N. are not one in the same. While the U.N. has often acted on its own accord and without the backing of the United States, when it comes down to serious business, the U.N. always calls on their “big brother for help.” In fact, since its inception, the U.N. has never undertaken the use of force, ever, without the genuine support of the United States.(313) In this way the United Nations is like the little kid at the playground always picking fights, yet he never actually fights, he calls on his big, tough brother to duke it out for him.
The U.N. has also at times created programs and policies that directly opposed U.S. policy but they have all failed badly because of U.S. opposition. In the 1990’s, the U.N. became clearly upset by the U.S. dominance of the assembly and its action.(313) The U.N. called for help whenever they needed it from their protector and “big brother,” but when that same brother who had gone to bat for them repeatedly tried to accumulate more of a voice on the assembly they were grossly opposed and shut out.
So I feel that all of the grumbling and groping about the things that politicians like Jesse Helms and his contemporaries are well founded. You at the U.N. feel that the United States should donate more money, more troops, more materials and supplies in your fight against poverty and affliction. We in the United States ask why? If you were clearly doing a sufficient job I am sure that it would be no problem. In fact, if you were merely doing your “own” job you would most likely receive the utmost American support. Yet we are fighting your battles, repeatedly, time and time again. So why would we give you more money, more support when we are going to fight for you anyway. We are better off pouring the money into our own defense, which will still help you when we are next called to your aid, and better our own defense at the same time. At least in this effort the United States would have something to gain.