Friday, October 01, 2004

THE NUTS & BOLTS: Why not place our faith in the multilateralism of the UN?

(A "repsonse to a response" to the Citizen Smash post I cited in CYBERSQUATTIN' -- an "illegal" war? -- continuing the discussion with fellow Citizen Smash cybersquatter "Chris"; his comments from a previous post, are in italics. This, however, has enough basic information regarding my viewpoint of the UN and the folly of total reliance upon multilateralism, that it qualifies for a Nuts & Bolts post.)

Chris -- here is where you and I differ.

I see a UN that, while still good as a forum for cooperation between nations, has rendered itself ILLEGITIMATE for any legislation or enforcement of international law.

They CONSISTENTLY refuse to differentiate between representative democracy and absolute dictatorship, treating both with the same deference, even as one protects our rights as the other seeks to deny those same rights to us.

They do, however, consistently discriminate against two nations ... the United States, and Israel ... denigrating these free, rights-respecting nations while tolerating (with appropriate grumblings) such paragons of human rights as Iran and Iraq.

(IMO, to justify their existence) they persist in the "September 10" mentality of negotiation/deliberation/resolution ... and totally ignore the capabilities that wealthy thugs like Saddam & Sons have to aid and abet the denial of those rights, before they even get to implementing the action called for by a resolution. Their knee-jerk aversion to the use of force prevents them from acting to protect you and me in a timely fashion ... if at all. It also renders them susceptible to manipulation by those who would turn our good-faith efforts for peace against us ... people like, say, Saddam Huessein, who played the UN for fools for 12 years.

And, despite being "untainted" by the profit motive, they have shown themselves to be corrupt.


Now -- let me deal with your assertions:

But you aren't the Sheriff. The US is not the Sheriff. It's illegal to Impersonate the Law. And you can't pretend to be if you want to ensure that others don't try to as well.

If the Law is corrupt beyond repair, then who do we appeal to, Chris? Or, do we just submit ... or keep grinding the wheels of the process, as we wait for those who do not respect our rights to kill or subjugate us?

21st Century technology, coupled with 7th Century brutality, is a combination that is both highly resistant to diplomacy ... and severely penalizes delays in opposing it. We don't have the time we did 50 years ago to wait until the storm clouds of war fully form.

People get so hung up on "France and Russia" (and Germany) when that is NOT the issue. They would have given in eventually... I've said it before, I won't beat the horse again.

The key word is "eventually" -- so you were willing to risk more 911-style attacks to follow the slow process of diplomacy?

It's not about pleasing 2 other nations.

It is in large part -- when one is the dominant economic power in Europe, and the other has a SC veto.

It's about having the broad, legitimate, and LEGALLY BINDING commitment from all 100+ nations in the UN including the Arab world. That is what approval from the UNSC does.

I've already talked about the legitimacy of the UN. And, a UNSC resolution would NOT guarantee a committment from the Arab world ... or even from the entire UN. We had 17(?) regarding Saddam alone, and they did NOTHING to DECISIVELY END THE PROBLEM!

It means that American forces will not be forced to shoulder 90%+ of the casualties and military burden. It means that the American taxpayer doesn't have to shell out $87 billion just on provisions for the military in Iraq. It means many more countries would spend much much more money on reconstruction automatically.

Then why do we end up footing so much of the bill for the UN itself? From what I have seen, in any conflict where we have committed more than token peacekeeping (read: problem-perpetuation) forces, we end up bearing most of the burden anyway.

The responsibility is *shared*. Is negotiated. And, most importantly, it takes out all reasonable cause for thinking that America is "going it alone" for her own gain ... That blue flag protects YOU Rich... because it absolves you from conflict of interest. It's the UNs' problem. You're just helping out along with everyone else.

What you are also doing is surrendering control of the process to a corrupt and inept body that is highly averse to decisive conflict resolution.

Bush chose not to take that course... and so.. most of the outside world believes he did it for Oil and/or for Israel.

Then they are (willingly) BLIND:

> For almost 60 years, we have had the capability to turn any nation in the Third World into glass if they pissed us off -- including any of Israel's enemies in the MidEast -- and WE DID NOT!

> We have stepped in between Israel and her enemies, to the point of compelling the UNITED-NATIONS-AUTHORIZED State of Israel to give up land that is legitimately theirs, as a result of war waged against them (and figures heavily into their security ... and Arafat and the Arab world continue to persist in their efforts to drive the Jews into the sea. (So much for diplomacy changing their minds!)

> If we really had wanted Iraqi oil, we would have stayed there in 1991 ... or emulated France/Germany/Russia and cut sweetheart deals with Saddam --- WE DID NOT!

Would there have been extremist violence in Iraq had the UN being running the show?Yes ... Would there have been military resistance and insurgency from former Baathist elements? Yes

Would a UN force, hamstrung by the indecision that results from the need for diplomatic "cooperation" have been even less effective ... and for that matter, be restrained from decisively resolving the conflicts you cite ... than the present Coalition? IMO -- probably. This is not Bosnia ... we are dealing with an enemy that does not fear their own deaths, and therefore is highly resistant to anything short of timely and decisive action.

The difference, though.. would have been many ... Iran, Jordan, Syria and Turkey could have been asked directly by the UN to close, and secure their borders. A UN mission could have been sent to those countries (except probably Iran) specifically to help tighten border security during and after the actual invasion.

Frankly, I don't trust either Iran or Syria to act in good faith ... and that leaves a LOT of border open. And, even if we sent UN forces there, the diplomats would still be capable of impeding effective patrolling.

Turkey would have allowed the US to invade from the north... an absolutely massive difference strategically and logistically.

This point has merit ... but it had merit irrespective of the UN stamp-of-approval. Since when does not having that stamp make a right policy wrong? Where is Turkey's responsibility, as a soverign nation, to do the right thing?

The UN could have used it's and the IAEA knowledge of WMD sites to actually go and secure those sites so that any evidence of WMD was found immediately.

You contradict yourself here, Chris ... you say that if we WAITED for UN diplomacy to act, we could have "immediately" found the WMD? In the real world, I think that, in this respect, our going to the UN actually allowed more time for Saddam to disperse/destroy/hide any WMD he had.

If they knew he had WMD ... why didn't they ACT DECISIVELY (instead of persisting in the Dance of the Inspectors) to take them away from him in the 12 years preceeding OP Iraqi Freedom?

There are dozens of things that could have been done differently.. I don't know if the UN would have done them... I can't possibly know that... but all I know is it would have taken a huge amount of burden off of the US financially, militarily, and psychologically. And that is what really matters.

That last line really scares me, Chris ... it is more important that you are not "burdened", than it is to see that the job is done right? I trust the United States, with its structural checks/balances/protections against capricious action (and for the rights of all involved), more than the inept/corrupt/relativist UN, to do that.

We tried the UN way for decades ... and those who have NO respect for the inalienable rights of ALL MEN kept getting stronger, not weaker. Our successes have come, OTOH, when we have PO'ed the UN and acted with resolve.

Senator Kerry says that the President stubbornly resists change ... then why does the Senator insist that we go BACK to the policies that have failed us?

There is only one way to neutralize the clear and present danger of WMD-equipped terrorists and rogue states ... and it is not negotiation, or even inspection (which will NEVER "get them all"). It is resolute confrontation (which can be diplomatic, but must be backed up with the CREDIBLE threat of force) of such entities, that either results in their adoption of a rights-respecting worldview ... or their forcible removal from control of such WMD.

It is that black-and-white, if we are going to truly take care of the problem.


Very well said. I always appreciate your take on a subject. I learn a great deal from your posts over at the indepundit site.


Jane m
I believe the military successes of the UN can be written on a matchbook cover with a large crayon. Even when they do commit they don't support the committment. Just ask (Canadian) General Romeo Dallaire who led the peacekeeping force in Rwanda. He begged for more forces before the wheels came off and they reduced his force from 2500 to 450.
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