By M.J. Aslam
Considering the historical background of creation of two highest international organisations of the world, League of Nations/LN & United Nations Organisation/UN, it may be safely said that a World War was fought each time that provided necessary impetus for founding of each of these intergovernmental organisations. Paris Peace Conference that put an end to WW 1st between Allied Powers & Axis/Central Powers supplied the basis for formation of LN/ League of Nations on 20th January, 1920. The main objective of LN was to achieve & maintain harmony & peace, & settle disputes, among member-nations. But as it failed to achieve its objectives by stopping WW 2nd, it was felt & admitted that it had become ineffective & redundant. Hence, losing credibility & trust among member countries. Against this backdrop of events, the UN was founded on 24th October, 1945 in New York among 32 member nations initially which membership has increased to 193 at present. It replaced LN with a new vision of global peace & prosperity. It was formed to stop & settle all those conflicts among member nations that have a potential of threatening world peace by giving rise to WW 3rd. The main objectives of UN, among others, are promotion of human rights and maintenance of international peace and security. These lofty ideals are prescribed in UN Charter of 1945 which has been signed by all nations of the world.
Has the UN failed to realise its objectives of world peace & resolution of regional disputes between nations, amicably? Can we say that a WW 3 is imminent or necessary to be fought for re-constructing & re-naming it? Why this august body of nations is today looking so ineffective & useless? Let us find answer from undergoing discussion.
It is fact that the UNO was constructed with a lot of hope & expectation after it was agreed that it would outlaw any unilateral use of force by any member State against another & the armed force would be used in the “common interest” of the world peace & order & nothing different. The veto power was given to five nations with the same objective of maintaining peace & order in the world by helping member States to settle their disputes peacefully without bringing them into major crisis that may lead to international wars. The formation of UN had offered the promise of bringing into existence such “a world order in which short term goals of self-interests of States & their leaders would be always subservient to the long term goals of common interests of peace & co-operation among the member nations by following rules & procedures of UN Charter”.
Though UN prevented any major international war, thus far, the promise it had made to the nations has not been fulfilled. The main reason for failure of the UN to achieve its goals of world peace & order is the USA which, as sole superpower, has not been feeling bothered about following the international law & the UN Charter before launching armed assault against any nation. In fact, the US has a long history of unjustified interventions in the affairs of & aggression against, other nations, well, before, during & after Cold War. Several studies conducted by independent American organisations of Ron Paul Forums, Global Research, etc, reached to the conclusion that the US has been responsible since WWII for the deaths of civilians between 20-30 million in wars & conflicts scattered over the world in 37 victim nations of American aggression & interference. Staggeringly disturbing figures, indeed. Furthermore, un-hypocritical & honest assertion is that overwhelming number of the victims among millions dead are unarguably the Muslims of Iraq, Afghanistan & erstwhile-ISIS-held areas that were bombed by US since 9/11.
Apart from USA, the former USSR also did a great harm to UN. In December 1979, it launched unilateral armed assault against Afghanistan which was valiantly resisted & fought by Afghan people supported by the UN. When Soviets ended their occupation of that country in 1989 (February), around 2 million Afghan civilians were left death & millions were uprooted. Pangs of the foreign occupation are still alive & experienced by the Afghans on their soil. The dissolution of the USSR on 26th December, 1991 meant that the US won’t be having henceforth any global competitor in geopolitics or making unilateral aggression on sovereign lands. The bipolar world got transformed into multi-polar world where, however, the US has, by the size of its economy, tremendous progress in science & technology , production of most unmatched war weaponry & presence of its troops in every continent, dominated the geopolitics as a unipolar world order .
The splitting of the USSR emboldened & energized the US in its aggressive foreign policy of interference into the affairs of the others. Although the remnant of the former USSR, Russia, is trying to re-establish its international hegemony by supporting Assad regime of Syria, the fact is that the US is the only global power dominating the geopolitics.
After Iraqi invasion of Kuwait on 2nd August, 1990, the UN passed Resolution 678 on 29th November, 1990 giving ultimatum to Iraq to withdraw its forces from Kuwait. This Resolution provided justification to the US supported by other nations for Gulf War that led to the defeat of Saddam Hussain. This Resolution was, however, replaced & rescinded by Resolution 687 adopted on 3rd April 1991 by UN & accepted by Iraq. Although Resolution 678 was replaced by Resolution 687, concluding paragraph 43 of the former, “decides…to take such further steps as may be required for the implementation of the present resolution and to secure peace and security in the area” has been used by the US as giving it a “right of self-defence” : a mere pretext to bomb Iraq in 1996, 1998 and then brazen invasion of that country in 2003 also took place under “right of self-defence”. The illegal implementation of rescinded-Resolution 678 was not confined to Gulf area only. The US has used this self-invented right of self-defence against Sudan & Afghanistan also. It may be noted that under the UN Charter armed attack against any sovereign nation requires “prior permission” of the UN & any such act of self-defence has to be “necessary “ & “appropriate”. But being a veto power, it is undeniably clear that, any resolution against its unilateral use of military force against any nation would be vetoed by it in SC. This unilaterally vested-power of veto has been applied by the US on implementation of all UN Resolutions that provide for two-nation solution to Palestinian-Issue with Jerusalem as the capital of State of Palestine. US is exclusively responsible for Israeli occupation, settlement of Jews in occupied territory by Zionist State & procrastination of creation of Palestinian State. It has made UN SC hapless & helpless in finding a solution to this vexed problem that is consuming precious lives of Palestinian children, men & women in occupied land daily at the hands of Zionist Forces who are backed by US. The American decision to declare Jerusalem has been rejected by the UN GA & UN SC in absolute majority vote on 21st December, 2017. Only nine “countries” that are actually the patches of islands in the Pacific Ocean supported US on 21st December, 2017 in the UN GA special session voting on US-decision-declaring Jerusalem capital of Israel. They are mere colonies of the US dependant on its remittances.
All this proves not only how the US has broken the international law, time and again, but also that UN is helpless in defending its Charter.
In American Invasion of Iraq, it was admitted that Saddam Hussein didn’t possess any “weapons of mass
destructions” and that the war was fought for a brazen lie that killed millions of Iraqi-Muslims. It is documented that George W. Bush spoke lies after lies in his public speeches to invent “justification” for Iraqi invasion by making his people believe in his lies & that the actual war theory was “weapons of mass deception” invented & employed by duo Bush-Blair to destroy Iraq. (Weapons of mass deception: The uses of propaganda in Bush’s war on Iraq, (2003) by Sheldon Rampton & John Stauber). George W Bush & seven top US officials , without hesitation or remorse, lied after lying, made 935 “false statements about the security risk posed by Iraq in the two years following September 11, 2001 that culminated in military action against Iraq on March 19, 2003”.
“Even when it was proven beyond a doubt that Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destructions never existed, the fact that the war had been fought for a lie no longer seemed consequential. What difference does it make, answered George W. Bush…. when it was pointed out to him that no weapons of mass destructions had been found”. (TD Allman in his book “Rogue State”, New York (2004) page 328). Really, what difference it has had made to the Americans & British people because they & their nations are SAFE. But see what has been done to Middle East by these “super powers” while spreading lies. These unilateral aggressions & repeated infringement of UN Charter by the US “has destroyed belief in America’s goodness, among hundreds of millions of people, nations and people, [who] see it the greatest threat to civilized human values and decades of lies and intimidation could not make the Iraqi people love their oppressor or desire their own enslavement”. (Ibid, pages 1-5).
A vehement critic of American foreign policy, William Blum, an American historian & journalist, calls the American State “rogue State” for its brazen acts of intervention & aggression by unilateral use of military power against other nations which in his opinion have destroyed dozens of established democratic & non democratic systems of the world. (Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower (3rd edition, 2005) by William Blum). Noam Chomsky has called it “by far the best book on the topic”. Osama Bin Laden approved this book by quoting the following passage from it:
“If I were president, I could stop terrorist attacks against the United States in a few days. Permanently, I would first apologize – very publicly and sincerely – to all the widows and orphans, the impoverished and the tortured, and the many millions of other victims of American imperialism. Then I would announce to every corner of the world that America’s global military interventions have come to an end.” (Washington Post dated 21 January, 2006: Topic: Author who got big boost from Bin Laden).
The multipolar world order in which actions & decisions are taken not by a single big power alone but other nations’ say is also considered & involved under multilateralism for armed action against erring nation or for settlement of conflicts though reflected in UN Charter & Resolutions are no more in sight. The rhetorics that UN will solve Issues on its agenda are played with euphoric. National interest has dominated the geopolitics while innocent civilians in conflict areas are losing their rights of living, liberty & so on. The UN seems to have become a rubber stamp for approving unilateral military actions of the five veto powers especially the US wherever their alleged “national interest” demands it.
This powerful institution of UN has been rendered powerless by repeated violation of its Charter & Resolutions by these big powers led by the US.