Tuesday, May 10, 2005

John Bolton & The UN

In an earlier post, I argued John Bolton was the right candidate for the U.S ambassador to the U.N precisely because of his contempt for the global body. Like almost all Libertarians, I view the United Nations as a "criminal enterprise in which no moral nation should ever participate, let alone perpetuate. " Philosophically Bolton appears to be on our wavelength, as these statements indicate:
"[M]any Republicans in Congress--and perhaps a majority--not only do not care about losing the General Assembly vote but actually see it as a 'make my day' outcome. Indeed, once the vote is lost… this will simply provide further evidence to why nothing more should be paid to the UN system." The Washington Times, 1998
"Support for the International Criminal Court concept is based largely on emotional appeals to an abstract ideal of an international judicial system." Statement before the House International Relations Committee, 2000.
General Assembly Resolutions and international conference declarations, (such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Agenda 21, and the Millennium Declaration) are “mind-numbing.” Policy Review. Bring Back the Laxalt Doctrine, 2000.

Ayn Rand summed up the philosophical case against United Nations when she wrote that "as an institution allegedly dedicated to peace, freedom, and human rights" it includes "Soviet Russia - the most brutal aggressor, the bloodiest dictatorship, the largest-scale mass-murderer and mass-enslaver in all history - among its charter members". She took this observation to its logical conclusion: "it is so grotesquely evil an affront to reason, morality and civilisation that no further discussion is necessary". However it is necessary to point out the consequences, which she did:
"The communist world has gained a moral sanction, a stamp of civilised respectability from the Western world - it has gained the West's assistance in deceiving its victims - it has gained the status and prestige of an equal partner, thus establishing the notion that the difference between human rights and mass slaughter is merely a difference of political opinion"
The communist world also gained from collobration as it could benefit from the free countries "material, financial, scientific, and intellectual resources; the free countries have nothing to gain from the communist countries. Therefore, the only form of common policy or compromise possible between two such parties is the policy of property owners who make piecemeal concessions to an armed thug in exhcnage for his promise not to rob them". (Take note North Korean appeasers)
Thus the case against the UN is a case against collaboration with evil. It is the case that you can't expect results from "a crime fighting committee whose board of directors includes the leading gangsters of the community". A more acceptable ideal than the UN would be a 'Community of Democracies'. This would be closer to what by 19th century liberals like Immanuel Kant (In Toward Perpetual Peace) advocated.

Foreign Policy has an exchange between two academics over John Bolton's nomination. It provides a good demonstration of the dogmatic mentality of pro-UN academics. The author, Morton H. Halperin, argues that "the core of what he [Bolton] believes totally repudiates the notion that the basic objective of U.S. policy should be to build international institutions and international law that, over time, make the United States and the world more secure. He believes that idea is fundamentally misguided. It’s a legitimate intellectual position, but a person holding that view cannot be an effective U.S. ambassador to the United Nations." As the other academic rightly argued, Bolton does not reject the basic objectives of U.S. policy but the way it has been carried out. The academic notes that "people who take international law seriously should take its substance seriously". I would also note that those who offer a powerful critique of the United Nations shouldn't be dismissed out of hand. Labelling him as a "dangerous ideologue", "treaty killer", "undersecretary for chads" and the "anti-diplomat" will not suffice as criticism. Bolton's objections to the UN, whilst not going far enough, do address significant and fundamental issues. They ought to be dealt with.


At 7:44 PM, Blogger not apathetic said...

Very much agreed james!
bad news is that the UN has established its youth wing in hamilton, and i belive that one of the youth council members is the one who set it up.
my friend told me he read it in the times....hmm..not a reliable source..
the reason she got behind the UN is because she is passionate about world peace(hahahahahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
how many wars have been fought, how many people have died, how many govt policies forced on people due to the UN and their so called human rights or inaction to act?so much for practicing what they preach.
and our own dear leader comrade helen clarkski greases up to them along with her other labour (feminist-anti family-anti American) ministers.
its so damn stupid
also james some of the evidince(maxim inst) mags contain some interesting stuff on the UN.
thanks for your blog site, i like it

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