The UN by 2040
By 2040, the UN will be more of a clearinghouse of opinions proffered by governments and NGOs because the organization is already failing to deliver on most of the mandates it was meant to address. For instance, the most powerful UN agency, the Security Council has already failed in ensuring security (Rice-Oxley para. 1-3). The peacekeepers discharged by the council in areas affected by conflicts have never succeeded in restoring peace. The World Health Organization has performed poorly in containing epidemics like Ebola, while the refugee agency cannot cater for all the people fleeing from persecution or conflict. In spite of the shortcomings, the UN has continued to expand with approximately 85,000 employees, and an annual expenditure of 40 billion dollars (Rice-Oxley para. 1-3).
The UN has performed poorly in defending human rights, one of the cornerstone the organization was founded on. The most remarkable failures in protecting human rights is the Rwanda genocide. Two weeks after the onset of the genocide, the Security Council lowered the number of peacekeepers to a tenth of the original 2,500 (Gilmour 239-240). If the Security Council kept its initial promise of sending 2,500 peacekeepers, many of the 800,000 people who lost their live could have been saved. Another failure of the UN to safeguard human rights is seen in the Srebrenica genocide. The UN peacekeeper were very few compared to Bosnian Serb forces, and they were forced to hand over thousands of men and women to soldiers who went on to execute the bloodiest mass killings in Europe since the Second World War (Gilmour 239-240).
The Rwandan and Srebrenica genocides made the UN and leaders around the world to commit to preventing such atrocities from occurring again in the future captured in the slogan “never again”. However, in 2009 over 40,000 people were killed in Sri Lanka in a period of six months when the Sri Lankan army bombed the Liberation Tigers of the Tamil Eelam in an effort to finish the rebel group (Gilmour 239-240). The rebels held civilians as hostage and shot anyone that tried to flee. The UN secretary general commissioned a report in 2012 in order to identify the reasons for inaction. The investigation identified systematic failure as the main cause. The failure occurred in UN agencies, headquarters and the general assembly (Gilmour 239-240).
In the recent past countries like Sudan, Mali, and Ukraine have called upon the UN to provide them with additional human rights officers to assist the countries deal with various crisis, but this has not been provided. Another area currently the UN is seen as failing to uphold human rights is in the millennial development goal. Nongovernmental organizations are worried that the UN has failed including or stipulating measures that governments should observe when implementing the goals (Gilmour 248-249).
The UN Is an Instrument Used by the West to Exercise Power
The UN was established on principles that were meant to ensure peace and development. However, some of the principles have been perverted over the years, and currently the permanent members of the Security Council are utilizing the organization as an instrument of power (Lévesque para. 1-10). The General Assembly adheres to democratic principles where each of the 193 countries is allowed one vote. In reality, member countries normally vote alongside powerful countries that provide them with financial aid. The general assembly has no real power, the five permanent members of the Security Council, which are, the U.S, the UK, France, Russia, and China possesses the powerful veto. For example, the general assembly has passed a number of resolution against Israel, but the Security Council and the U.S have blocked them (Lévesque para. 1-10).
Why I chose to do the Powerpoint NGO and the UN
The preamble to the UN Charter asserts that all nations are equal regardless of their size. However, some nations have permanent seats while some entire regions do not have even a single permanent seat (Langridg para. 5). Only a few nations have a right of veto despite the fact that the preamble states that all nations are equal. I chose to delve on the NGO and UN in attempt to uncover what constitutes to some countries having the mandate to veto while others are deprived of the same.
The UN is slowly becoming a clearing house of opinions because the organization no longer focuses on the mandates it was established to accomplish such as preventing war and ensuring development. Sixty-five wars that have claimed millions of live have broken out after the creation of the organization. Instead, the UN has become an instrument used by the west to exercise power. The peacekeepers discharged by the council in areas affected by conflicts have never succeeded in restoring peace. The U.S, the UK, France, Russia, and China dominate the organization. Members of the general assembly only vote to pass matters that have already been endorsed by the five nations because of the financial support they receive from the countries.
Gilmour, Andrew. “The Future of Human Rights: A View from the United Nations.” Ethics & International Affairs, 28. 8 (2014): 239-250.
Langridge, Charlotte. Liberalism: Another Tool of Western Hegemony. 30 October 2013. https://www.e-ir.info/2013/10/30/liberalism-another-tool-of-western-hegemony/. 6 May 2017.
Lévesque, Julie. US Imperialism, International Law and the United Nations. 7 December 2012. https://www.globalresearch.ca/us-imperialism-international-law-and-the-united-nations/5314381. 6 May 2017.
Rice-Oxley, Mark. The UN at 70: does the United Nations have a future? 7 Semptember 2015. https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/sep/07/un-at-70-does-united-nations-have-a-future. 6 May 2017.