In the heart of a multicultural New York City, on one of the hottest pieces of real estate amid a picturesque river view, rests a sanctuary for third world perpetuation, rich with corrupt despots who spend their time scheming for personal gain or world dominance at the expense of the masses of people they are sent to actually represent and promote. The shame is that this prime site is wasted on them when it could be used for something much better and brighter - like a "United" Nations.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt's dream of creating a global organization of member states devoted to preserving international peace through cooperative security has yet to be realized. The greenish glass and stone building that glistens over the East River has failed to unite. It has succeeded at being used by oppressive regimes, human rights violators, dishonest brokers and greedy opportunists to rob the world of cherished resources and opportunities, and to keep the people it was intended to help impoverished, uneducated, and helpless.
The impetus behind the establishment of the United Nations was the inability of the former League of Nations to prevent World War II. Despite the League's presence, Germany occupied neighboring European states and Japan invaded Manchuria. The goal of the U.N. was to do better.
Today, we stand at a precipice built on turmoil and world strife. Instead of the United Nations making the world a warmer place, it has become colder. The premise of "one nation, one vote" has enabled small, corrupt nations with ruthless, despotic leaders to control the agenda and set the standards at the lowest bar since Sodom and Gomorrah faced destruction. If Abraham had to find a few righteous within the halls and walls for the U.N. to be saved today, he would once again fail. Not to say that everyone and every nation represented is wicked, but the better ones are merely more reasonable than righteous.
In the past two decades alone, the U.N. has failed to stop Iraq from invading Kuwait, to stop the Tutsis from being slaughtered in Rwanda, to end the genocide in Darfur, to stop or even attempt to curb terrorism operating under state sponsorship, to prevent Milosevic's genocidal war, to stop the war in Iraq, and has since failed to help Iraq weed out the extremists to allow it to build and heal. It has failed to contain North Korea and Iran's nuclear ambitions, and is now looking at failing to prevent yet another travesty in the Balkans if it gives in to the xenophobes in Serbia and denies Kosovo its independence.
What is has done well is enabled most of these actions. By yielding to unreasonable minority countries and rogue leaders who cherish power over virtue, the collective United Nations have brought us all to the brink of another World War. Gone are the peacemakers like Mahatma Gandhi, or the articulate leaders like Abba Eban, In their stead we allow Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to stand at the podium in New York and declare his Nuclear aims and threats against the west, and we offer Venezuela's Hugo Chavez safe passage into New York City churches so he can further denigrate democracy.
Today's United Nations is powerless to stop the Janjaweed in Sudan from massacring the non-Arab Africans in Darfur, and is equally as powerless to disarm Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon, as per its very own resolution to do so. Yet, it can pass countless one-sided measures against a common enemy of despots - Israel, while ignoring human rights violations in the very countries that vote affirmative on these measures. The members lie and maneuver for public opinion polls and then ultimately do little or nothing to actually solve problems. There are endless lists of U.N. failures that cloud over and dwarf whatever minute accomplishments may spring forth from within.
The reasons are simple; money and power. Many small nations and some of the bigger ones too have innate resources that other nations need to progress. Every nation is vying for precious minerals or oil, weapons or whatever wares are being traded, and rogue states with rulers thirsty for antiquated regional dominance, or bent on reestablishing ancient religious empires, barter resources for humanity. That is a routine day at the U.N.
No one believes that China has even a fair record on human rights, and few truly believe that Saudi Arabia is an honest broker for peace. Still, these nations are sought after for strategic alliances within the brotherhood of nations. Few ambassadors care about the truth, however, as lawlessness is welcome at the very top of heap. When the Secretary General of the U.N. himself was as close as a father to a son under the largest financial swindle perpetrated under the Iraq "Oil for Food" program, who watches the watchers?
The final status vote for the independence of Kosovo, which has been waiting for years to finally be free of an oppressive Serbian dominance, rooted in centuries old religious and ethnic intolerances, was just delayed. Neighboring states are worried that acknowledging the issues of Kosovo and the oppression of the ethnic Albanians may mean that their own infractions against basic human protocols may be exposed. Yet, false rationale is accepted, even encouraged in delaying doing what is right. As long as the tyrants can hold their reigns, or greedy power brokers can get richer, the helpless and the needy will wait.
Whether it is Israel being censured, Africans being slaughtered, moderate Muslims being marginalized or simply the impoverished and oppressed languishing, the U.N. has a mandate to prevent events that will snowball into catastrophe. Instead, for the sake of avarice, power and even religious helotism, the members of the U.N. allow villains who desire war to obtain nuclear technology and ignore their own resolutions to disarm terrorists. Illegal kidnappings occur under the U.N.'s very watch, using its own white vehicles, and it has no power to negotiate the release of the hostages.
The extremists and fanatics are increasing their strength; the democracies of the west are ever becoming isolated. The United Nations, once a hope for peace, is now exposed for the fraud that it is. The world seems headed down a bad path where the clash of nations may prove too great to endure, and Kofi Anan's tenure may be the witness to it all.
Maybe this is a worse case scenario; I hope so, but the shimmering glass that reflects the sunlight over the water offers little hope at all. The good people in this world are left to heal the world alone while the daily crimes at the U.N. rob the downtrodden of their faith and the hopeful of their dreams.
We need the place that FDR envisioned, but we need to first dismantle the United Nations.