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November 24, 2004
Danforth: Why Have The UN?

America's UN ambassador John Danforth expressed his frustration and that of many in the US after watching the UN again bravely decide to dither while the Sudan burns:

John C. Danforth, the United States ambassador, assailed the General Assembly on Tuesday, saying its decision to avoid voting on a resolution denouncing human rights violations in Sudan called into question the purpose of the Assembly.

"One wonders about the utility of the General Assembly on days like this," he said. "One wonders if there can't be a clear and direct statement on matters of basic principle, why have this building? What is it all about?"

Mr. Danforth's blunt-spoken exasperation was prompted by a ruling earlier Tuesday in the General Assembly's committee on social, humanitarian and cultural affairs to take no action on a measure citing human rights violations in Sudan, which the United States has called genocide.

The purpose of the UN had originally been, in part, to ensure that no further genocides occurred after the Nazi Holocaust. In that mission the UN has been singularly unsuccessful. They have stood by and watched as genocide has erupted under various names -- "ethnic cleansing" being the most antiseptic -- around the globe in places like Cambodia, China, Rwanda, the Balkans, Iraq, and now in the Sudan. The UN in most of those cases couldn't even bring themselves to recognize the slaughter as it occurred, saving its crocodile tears for after the carnage.

If anyone can name a single genocide in which the UN took any action outside the rhetorical to stop, please be sure to let us know. In this case, as before, they couldn't even bring themselves to oppose it even with rhetoric.

The General Assembly delayed any action until today on the expression of "grave concern" on a motion from South Africa. It wasn't that long ago that the people in charge in Praetoria conducted a global campaign against apartheid in their own country, raising millions of dollars and awareness of the injustice of the old regime towards the majority of South African citizens. Apparently justice and freedom are exclusive to the South Africans on that continent, and the sufferings of the Sudanese requires no response from Nelson Mandela and his political heirs. What a disgusting and transparently hypocritical act by those who served as political icons, especially for the Left.

If the South Africans and the rest of the UN continues to block any recognition of the terrorist genocide being conducted in the Sudan, perhaps we need to take some significant action regarding the UN. Withdrawal puts us at too much of a political disadvantage, as the veto power we hold in the UNSC keeps much of their mischief from fruition. However, I see no reason to continue one cent of funding for this corrupt and venal congress of dictators, kleptocrats, and hypocritical clowns. Hit the UN where it hurts: its pocketbook.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at November 24, 2004 6:29 AM

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