We were at the symphony last night, for an evening of Ravel. I’m not particularly a fan of Ravel, so I did my best to zone out as much as possible. I read in the program the conductor last night had won some sort of UNESCO honor. I amused myself with thinking how wonderful it would be if I won a UN honor. I could imagine it. The press is assembled and the spotlight is on me. And I get to make the speech I’ve always dreamed of making:
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, I am delighted that you are here today, so that I can speak on an issue that is so dear to my heart. No, it’s not the incredible humanitarian work I’ve done on behalf of vegans and fish that will be the topic of my press conference today. Instead, I’d like to speak about the UN itself. Since its founding in 1945, the United Nations has held a special place in the hearts of people all over the world. To so many people, it represents the promise of a peaceful, cooperative world. We pass that belief down to our children, generation after generation as, every year, tens of thousands, nay, hundreds of thousands of children, wave their little boxes around, collecting coins for UNICEF.
Well, I’m here to say: GET OVER THAT ROMANTIC FANTASY. Today’s UN is nothing like the post-War organization we still think of. Instead, it is an utterly corrupt bureaucracy that provides a loud voice and a powerful vote for every tin-pot dictatorship in the world. When the UN isn’t busy trying to destroy the only legitimate democratic nation in the otherwise corrupt, backwards and totalitarian Middle East, it occupies its time trying to hide the scandalous fact that its employees systematically pimp small children in Third World Countries and actively support terrorists in Middle Eastern countries.
Nothing illustrates more clearly the farce that is the United Nations than the composition of the Human Rights Council. Here’s a handy-dandy list of the current Council members:
|African States (13)||Asian States (13)||Eastern European States (6)||Latin American & Caribbean States (8)||Western European & Other States (7)|
|Angola (2010)||Bahrain (2011)||Bosnia and Herzegovina (2010)||Argentina (2011)||Belgium (2012)|
|Burkina Faso (2011)||Bangladesh (2012)||Hungary (2012)||Bolivia (2010)||France (2011)|
|Cameroon (2012)||China (2012)||Russian Federation (2012)||Brazil (2011)||Italy (2010)|
|Djibouti (2012)||India (2010)||Slovakia (2011)||Chile (2011)||Netherlands (2010)|
|Egypt (2010)||Indonesia (2010)||Slovenia (2010)||Cuba (2012)||Norway (2012)|
|Gabon (2011)||Japan (2011)||Ukraine (2011)||Mexico (2012)||United Kingdom (2011)|
|Ghana (2011)||Jordan (2012)||Nicaragua (2010)||United States (2012)|
|Madagascar (2010)||Kyrgyzstan (2012)||Uruguay (2012)|
|Mauritius (2012)||Pakistan (2011)|
|Nigeria (2012)||Philippines (2010)|
|Senegal (2012)||Qatar (2010)|
|South Africa (2010)||Republic of Korea (2011)|
|Zambia (2011)||Saudi Arabia (2012|
Some are innocuous. Despite its refusal to apologize to all of the people it tortured and murdered in the 1930s and 1940s, Japan has otherwise (and I say this without sarcasm) been an exemplary world citizen. I also have no problem with the United States being there. Most of the European countries, although despicable in their behavior towards Israel, stupid in their economies, soul destroying in their Nanny State policies, and suicidal in their immigration policies, treat their own citizens pretty well (if you can call infantilizing and constantly monitoring adults treating someone well). There are other countries that I simply know too little about to comment, such as Gabon or Zambia or Slovakia. I’ve heard that Hungary is a nice place to live.
But really, some of the other choices on this “Human Rights” council: China, land of a thousand imprisonments for free speech, land of executions of dissidents, land of prisoner labor and forced organ donation, land of sweat shops and epic pollution? Cuba, land of a thousand imprisonments for free speech, land of no toilet paper, land of medieval medical care if you’re not the type of party apparatchik who gets interviewed by Michael Moore, land of the Northern Hemisphere’s most stagnant economy? The Russian Federation, home of oligarchs, murdered newsmen, and a dictatorship increasingly reminiscent of the old Soviet style? Egypt, home of brutal government repression against any hint of political opposition (although I have a hard time getting exercised by a policy that keeps the Muslim Brotherhood squished)? Saudi Arabia, which criminalizes (by death) all religions but Islam, censors all books but those that support Wahhabiism, and brutally oppresses the female half of its population with whips, acid and home imprisonment? Belgium, home of the EU?
Small wonder that Iran, knowing a comfortable roosting spot when it sees one, is actively campaigning for a seat on the Human Rights Council. With its strict Islamic law (beatings, hangings, persecution of gays, etc.), its fixed elections, and its war against its own people, it’s a perfect candidate for the HRC. Or really, if we’re going to call something by its true name, why don’t we call that anything-but-august body the Dictators’ Rights Council.
Ladies and gentlemen of the press, I hope I’ve given you something to think about. I hate to be the one that breaks up a long-standing love affair, but its embarrassing to see middle aged men and women in the grip of a calf love with a thug. As for this UNESCO award, I’ll give it the treatment it deserves by finding a home for it in the nearest dumpster.
UPDATE: This Michael Yon post isn’t about the UN, it’s about NATO. I include it here because it’s part of a package showing how frail are those non-American reeds on which we rely in our perpetual search for the liberal holy grail of multilateralism. BTW, I’m not arguing against multilateralism in principle. I’m just saying that, in practice, we end up harnessed to and, worse, reliant up, people who have no commitment to our goals and who don’t like us very much.