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The UN's global malfeasance

By Tom DeWeese
web posted February 24, 2003

Anyone who has submitted themselves to the agony of watching the US Security Council debate has surely concluded the UN is not only incapable of fulfilling its primary mission to avert wars, but is criminally negligent.

UN supporters have accused their opponents of over-stating the case about the threat it poses to national sovereignty, the right of ours and other nations to self-governance. They dismiss documents like the Charter for Global Democracy as merely a "wish list" of private organizations that do not reflect the true UN agenda.

If, however, one accepts UN Secretary General Kofi Annan as the official voice of the UN, then it is useful, if not essential, to listen to what he says regarding the Charter. You be the judge of what is official UN policy.

Principle 1 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Consolidation of all international agencies under direct authority of the United Nations

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Formal institutional arrangements may often lack the scope, speed and informational capacity to keep up with the rapidly changing global agenda. Mobilizing the skills and other resources of diverse global actors, therefore, may increasingly involve forming loose and temporary global policy networks that cut across national, institutional and disciplinary lines. The United Nations is well situated to nurture such informal ‘coalitions for change' across various areas of responsibility."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Globalization and Governance," page 14

Principle 2 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Regulation by the UN of all transnational corporations and financial institutions

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Global companies occupy a critical place in this new constellation. They, more than anyone, have created the single economic space in which we live; their decisions have implications for the economic prospects of people and even nations around the world. Their rights to operate globally have been greatly expanded by international agreements and national policies, but those rights must be accompanied by greater responsibilities – by the concept and practice of global corporation citizenship. The marks of good citizenship may vary depending upon circumstances, but they will exhibit one common feature: the willingness by firms, whenever possible and appropriate, to pursue "good practice" as defined by the broader community, rather than taking advantage of the weaker regulatory systems or unequal bargaining positions of host countries."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Globalization and Governance," pages 13-14

Principle 3 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Demands an independent source of revenue for the UN

Position of Kofi Annan:
Knowing it is the single most controversial issue facing the UN, Kofi Annan was being extremely cautious to avoid making any concrete statements in his Millennium Summit report concerning UN taxes other than to plead, "to ensure that the Organization is given the necessary resources to carry out its mandate."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "for consideration by the Summit, "page 80

Principle 4 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Eliminate the veto power and permanent member status of the Security Council.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"The United Nations must also adapt itself to the changing times. One critical area to which I have already referred is reform of the Security Council."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Renewing the United Nations," page 69

Principle 5 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Authorize a standing UN army.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Although we have understandings for military standby arrangements with Member States, the availability of the designated forces is unpredictable and very few are in a state of high readiness. Resource constraints preclude us even from being able to deploy a mission headquarters rapidly."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Freedom from Fear," page 49

Principle 6 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Require UN registration of all arms and the reduction of all national armies.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Let us resolve, therefore: To take energetic action to curb the illegal traffic in small arms, notably by…Creating greater transparency in arms transfers…Supporting regional disarmament measures, such as the moratorium on the importing, exporting or manufacturing of light weapons..."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "for consideration by the Summit," page 79

Principle 7 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Require individual and national compliance with all UN "Human Rights" treaties.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Let us resolve, therefore: To strengthen respect for law, in international as in national affairs, in particular the agreed provisions of treaties on the control of armaments, and international humanitarian and human rights laws."
Secretary General Kofu Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "for consideration by the Summit," page 79

Principle 8 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Activate the International Court of Justice and make it compulsory for all nations.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"I strongly urge all countries to sign and ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court…"
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under section titled "Renewing the United Nations," page 69

Principle 9 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Calls for new institution to establish economic and environmental Sustainable Development.

Position of Kofi Annan:
Secretary General Annan provided no specifics on the establishment of new institutions. However, his report emphatically called for strong environmental controls, saying, "Environmental issues must be fundamentally repositioned in the policy-making process." He further called for, "Building a new ethic of global stewardship."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Sustaining our Future," page 63

Principle 10 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Establishment of International Environmental Court.

Position of Kofi Annan:
Secretary General Annan carefully avoided providing details as to how the UN would deal with violators of UN environmental treaties even though he claimed the section of his report entitled "Sustaining our Future" was presented "with a particular sense of urgency."
Secretary General Kofi Anna's report to the Millennium Summit under the section titled "Sustaining our Future," page 56

Principle 11 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Declaration that climate change is an essential global security interest that requires the creation of a "high-level action team" to allocate carbon emission based on equal per-capita rights.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"Implementing the 1997 Kyoto Protocol would mark a significant advance by binding the industrialized countries to verifiable emission limitation and reduction targets averaging 5 per cent below 1990 levels, to be achieved over the period 2008-2012."
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Assemble under the section titled "Sustaining our Future," page 59

Principle 12 of the Charter For Global Democracy:
Calls for the cancellation of all debt owed by the poorest nations, global poverty reductions and for "equitable sharing of global resources," as allocated by the UN.

Position of Kofi Annan:
"At the international level, the more fortunate countries owe a duty of solidarity to the less fortunate. Let them resolve therefore….to remove the shackles of debt which currently keep many of the poorest countries imprisoned in their poverty…"
Secretary General Kofi Annan's report to the Millennium Assembly under the section titled "for consideration by the Summit," page 78

Tom DeWeese is the publisher/editor of The DeWeese Report and president of the American Policy Center, a grassroots, activist think tank. Headquartered in Warrenton, VA, the Center maintains an Internet sit at www.americanpolicy.org. © Tom DeWeese, 2003

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