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>Should the United Nations take military action against China over climate change?

February 29, 2008 9 comments

>David Archibald’s latest paper destroys the myth that CO2 is to blame for the warming we’ve seen since the end of the Little Ice Age in the mid 19th century. He puts the warming effect from anthropogenic CO2 at around 0.1C, which is the conclusion I came to some time back.

However, that’s not the point of this post. I provide it as background because it includes the following graph:

The question that needs to be posed is this…

Given that Climate Change presents an existential threat to the earth’s climate system, that there’s a consensus of scientific opinion that the consequences will be dire and that the cost of not taking urgent action are significant then should the United Nations take military action against China in order to save the world given the huge increase in CO2 output projected for them?

Naturally, it’s a deliberately provocative question but why shouldn’t it be asked?

If the projection in the above graph is correct and ‘the science is settled’ then the world is doomed.

In order to preserve world peace – the UN’s primary objective – it must be incumbent on it to gather together those nations whose governments are keen to take action against anthropogenic global warming and stop China, militarily if necessary. That would be a pretty amusing spectacle, really; blue helmeted UN soldiers doing what they normally do – running away from a fight – while the UN’s European half-brother, the EU, expends more time fighting with itself than tackling China.

If China – and India for that matter – will not reduce carbon emissions then why shouldn’t they be subject to strong international action?

The situation really does show the apparently contradictory positions that the United Nations manages to navigate with no sense of cognitive dissonance.

In Australia the recent release of the Garnaut Report suggests that if Australia slashes its economic wrists by working towards a 90% reduction in CO2 by 2050 then it will be seen as a great world leader, a visionary country and an inspiration for recalcitrants such as China to follow.

I didn’t notice China follow Australia’s lead with the whole democracy thing, or take much notice of any of our world leading occupational health and safety standards, or take our side on ending North Korea’s concentration camp status, or even reform their economy by floating their currency.

You do have to give them credit for taking our lead on one important thing, though. They have hired a bunch of Aussies who worked on the Sydney Olympics to help make their upcoming version of the games a propaganda triumph.

The reason that people would think that another country would follow Australia’s lead – on moral grounds – has always eluded me.

(Nothing Follows)

>The new Cold War – UN vs USA

December 29, 2007 Leave a comment

>Since the fall of the Soviet Union the organisation that has been most virulently anti-freedom, anti-free market and anti-US has not been the EU, or China, but the United Nations.

No organisation has done more damage in the name of supposedly doing good in the history of the world than the UN, as the following article from Investor’s Business Daily notes. If the UN held one hundred percent of its members to even one-quarter of its Charter then the world would be a better place.

Forget radical Islam, the new Cold War is the United Nations versus the United States. Like the USSR, the UN can’t win this war but is doing terrific damage along the way.

The U.N. voted 178-1 to hike its spending 10% next year to an all-time high of $4.2 billion. The lone standout in voting against the record rise in spending? The U.S., which again finds itself alone at the U.N.

The U.S. has tried for some time to rein in the runaway United Nations and its various extremist political factions and bureaucracies, but to no avail. Now, the U.S. has become an outcast in the very organization it founded and has funded for 60 years.

Last Saturday, the U.N. announced its “marathon talks” had resulted in a $4.17 billion basic budget — even though the U.S. dissented. By the way, our dissent is meaningless, since we’re still obliged to pay just under a quarter of that budget, or roughly $922 million.

But we in fact pay much more than that each year.

In 2005, the most recent year for which data are available, we spent more than $5 billion on the U.N. and related activities, ranging from food programs to peacekeeping. That’s a rise of 67% during George Bush’s first term alone. So much for stingy Americans.

Too bad we’re not getting our money’s worth. In fact, the U.N. has become such a massive, unwieldy, corrupt organization that, at this point, it seems beyond repair.

To list the U.N.’s multitudinous sins here would require something the size of a phone book. Suffice to say, in recent years the U.N. has been involved in a variety of policy debacles and outright crimes.

These include the oil-for-food scandal, the largest financial scandal ever; charges that U.N. peacekeepers abused and prostituted young girls in Africa and the Balkans; did nothing about the genocide of millions of people in Darfur and Rwanda; turned its back on democratic Taiwan in favor of communist China; allows Iran to expand its illicit nuclear enrichment program; and so on.

Why such a bad record? Part of the problem is the U.N., which was started after World War II with the best of humanitarian intentions, has been hijacked by a variety of left-wing and anti-Semitic agendas, pushed by an aggressive pack of anti-U.S. and anti-democratic nations that tend to vote as a bloc in the U.N.

According to Heritage Foundation fellow Brett Schaefer, these U.N. voting blocs include the Organization of the Islamic Conference, the so-called Non-Aligned Movement, and the Group of 77 developing nations (which has 130 members — not 77.) All these groups are, in fact, anti-American, anti-West and anti-free market.

“So, where the U.N. actually could have a role in advancing economic policies that enhanced freedom, that enhanced opportunity, that enhanced economic development,” former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., John Bolton recently explained, “the mind-set of the U.N. itself as played out in its conference rooms and corridors is actually exactly to the contrary.”

The U.N., in short, has become a major way for nondemocratic, noncapitalist countries to siphon wealth from the wealthy countries — without doing anything that remotely looks like democratic, pro-market reform in their own countries.

The U.S. goes along mainly because there are many people out there — call them UNICEF-Americans — who actually believe the U.N.’s propaganda about saving “the children.”

But, in fact, if you’re a child in the Third World, you have righteous cause to curse the U.N. and the nongovernmental organizations it empowers to control your life. Where the U.N. goes, democracy doesn’t necessarily follow. Nor does development.

Just look at the Palestinian problem, which has festered for more than a half a century due to the U.N.’s never-ending solicitude for the Arab world’s hatred of the Jews.

Again in 2006, Israel topped the list of countries subjected to human rights criticism — not China, not Zimbabwe, not Venezuela, not North Korea, not Sudan, not Cuba, places where millions have been murdered, imprisoned and denied the most basic of human rights and freedoms. (The U.S., by the way, came in fourth.)

This sick fixation on Israel and the U.S. has ruined the U.N. Yet, in 2009, it’s planning to hold its “Durban II” conference. The last conference of the type, held in the summer of 2001, was a monthlong hate-fest against both Israel and the U.S. Perhaps not coincidentally, just days after it ended the 9/11 attacks occurred.

We’ve had enough, thank you. The U.N. wastes billions each year, while corruption flourishes. It’s time for the U.S. to pull out.

Let the tyrants and bureaucrats go home. Maybe we can form a new organization based on the 89 countries classified as “fully free” by the nonpartisan human rights group, Freedom House. That would give us almost half of the U.N.’s 192 current members — a good start for a new beginning.

A good summary of the UN and the fact that it’s run by tyrants, thugs and murderers who enjoy picking the pockets of major financiers in the form of ‘aid’, which props up their terrible regimes.

If you support the United Nations then you really are a Moral Idiot.

(Nothing Follows)

>United Nations states that CO2 emissions are not that dangerous

November 30, 2007 Leave a comment

>The United Nations is promoting a CO2 reduction position for the Bali negotiations that allows the world’s largest emitter, China, and sometime in the not so distant future top emitter, India, off the economy-limiting hook.

In pushing this position the UN demonstrates that emitting CO2 is, in fact, not dangerous. Why else would they not impose the same requirement on all countries?

Substitute CO2 emissions for mercury or lead being pumped into rivers and the ocean. Does it make sense to allow China and India, or any other country, a position in which toxic waste is pumped willy nilly into the water system?

Of course not.

Obviously, emitting CO2 can’t be that bad…

China and India should be spared the full burden of fighting climate change, the United Nations said on Tuesday in an agenda-setting report published just days ahead of an intergovernmental conference to agree to a successor to the Kyoto protocols.

The report of the UN Development Programme recommends that countries such as China and India should be required to reduce their emissions by only 20 per cent by 2050, while the rich industrialised countries shoulder a cut of 80 per cent.

The report will provide ammunition for developing countries wishing to avoid adopting stringent targets on emissions. China, India and others have argued that rich countries should carry more responsibility for the climate because most of the stock of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere came from the growth of their industry.

But the White House made it clear at international meetings on climate change in September that it would not sign up to any agreement that did not include China and the other developing nations going through rapid industrialisation.

Heated discussions over the share of the burden that each country should take for cutting emissions are likely to be the main focus of UN talks on climate change beginning next week in Bali, Indonesia. The talks, the most important since the Kyoto protocol was drafted in 1997, will mark the first negotiations on a potential successor to the treaty, the main provisions of which expire in 2012.

The report estimates that the world needs to spend about 1.6 per cent of gross domestic product each year until 2030 in order to prevent emissions rising to dangerous levels. Developed countries should aim to cut their emissions by 30 per cent by 2020, the UNDP report said.

In a sign of the scale of the task facing ministers at Bali the report also risked opening old wounds by questioning whether the carbon-trading system established at Kyoto was less effective at reducing emissions than a straightforward carbon tax – such as the one proposed on Tuesday by Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, in Beijing.

Kevin Watkins, lead author of the report, said: “Cap-and-trade is not particularly working. We need to develop the strategy into a carbon tax.”

Emissions trading finally started under the Kyoto protocol in 2005, and last year the market was worth about $30bn, according to the World Bank. Most of the transactions took place under the European Union’s emissions trading system, which was designed to help EU member states meet their commitments to cut emissions under the protocol.

Mr Watkins told the Financial Times: “If the rich countries can cut emissions by 80 per cent we have a 50:50 chance of [limiting] temperature rises to 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels [which scientists say is the limit of safety].”

The UN’s report came as internet search company Google supplied fresh evidence of investor enthusiasm for low-carbon technology by saying that it would branch out into renewable energy.

>Phoning overseas in North Korea earns you the death penalty

November 28, 2007 Leave a comment

>The concentration camp known as North Korea demonstrates its terrific respect for human rights, as codified in the United Nations’ Charter.

The blathering multiculturalists who tell us that all cultures are equal and that we have to respect others’ values are quiet when North Koreans execute people for making overseas phone calls but if foreigners ever come to Australia then the same group noisily protests that it’s a woman’s ‘right’ to wear the veil or dress up like an organic mailbox by donning a full burqa.

A North Korean factory chief was executed by a firing squad in front of a stadium of 150,000 people after being accused of making international phone calls, an aid group reports.

The man had been caught calling overseas on 13 phones he had installed and hidden away in a factory basement, the South Korean aid agency Good Friends said in a report on the North’s human rights.

A massive crowd of 150,000 filled a stadium and watched the man die.

Despite an overall decline since 2000, public executions have recently been on the increase and officials accused of drug smuggling, embezzlement and other crimes are the main targets.

In the same incident, six people were crushed to death and 34 others were injured as people stampeded out of the stadium.

So what caused the stampede? Ironically, more people were killed exiting the event than were actually being executed in the first place.

Most North Koreans are banished from communicating with the outside world because of the country’s regime that seeks to prevent any possibility of challenge to leader Kim Jong Il.

The North has carried out four other similar executions to various other factory chiefs in the past few months, the group reported.

“It is aimed at educating (North Koreans) to control society and prevent crimes,” Good Friends head Venerable Pomnyun said.

No wonder the left doesn’t make much noise. “…control society…” is what they’re all about and they all have a totalitarian streak a mile wide.

The group has not said how it obtained the information and has given no details of how many executions have taken place.

The report comes just a week after a UN General Assembly Committee adopted a draft resolution expressing concern at reports of maltreatment and human rights violations in North Korea.

Hands up anyone who thinks that the UN is anything other than morally bankrupt when it treats regimes like North Korea not only with kid gloves but also to handouts of millions of aid dollars – in cash.

The country has blasted the report, however, saying it is inaccurate and biased.

They say they do not violate human rights but the regime has long been accused of imposing the death penalty for political reasons, torturing border-crossers and restricting freedom on expression and religion.

People eat bark off the trees to survive but they don’t violate human rights. No worries.

(Nothing Follows)

Categories: United Nations

>UN continues predictable fecklessness in Darfur

November 13, 2007 Leave a comment

>When I described the United Nations as the #1 institution that ruins the world it was for reasons of political partisanship, corruption, incompetence and fecklessness.

And because it simply doesn’t uphold its charter.

The casual observer probably doesn’t understand that the UN is effectively an arm of the EU, which uses it as a lever to counter what it sees as US hegemony in the world. Given the EU’s remarkable record of not achieving anything remotely resembling positive results with its diplomatic gabfest interventions around the world such as in Iran it comes as no surprise that the UN achieves nothing either.

While its main priority is countering the US and not upholding the UN charter we should expect resolutions to the Darfur conflict, Iran’s nuclear weapons program, North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and a multitude of other issues around the world to be a long time coming…if ever.

For more than a week, U.N. helicopters have flown back and forth from Darfur, ferrying rebels in the bush to peace talks in Libya and envoys to the bush for consultations with the rebels, U.N. officials say.

But since convening the latest international talks to end the 4½-year conflict in the vast region of western Sudan, international mediators have been unable to achieve accord on even the most basic points of the negotiations themselves — where they should be held and when, and who should take part.

International envoys say low-level discussions continue in the Libyan coastal town of Sirte, the home town of Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi, who provided a marble convention hall the size of a basketball arena for the negotiations.

But all major rebel leaders boycotted the opening round of the talks. Substantive negotiations between Sudan’s government and the rebels are due in December.

Rebel leaders pledged this week to boycott that round as well unless the sponsors of the talks, the United Nations and the African Union, picked a site other than Libya and met other conditions.

When the talks began, U.N. envoy Jan Eliasson described them as “a moment of truth” toward political resolution of the conflict.

But U.N. officials this week stressed partial goals, including a cease-fire by both sides and uniting the fragmented rebel movements.

“We should not have had very high expectations from the outset. We did try to be realistic,” Ahmed Fawzi, a U.N. spokesman for the mediation, said by phone from New York. U.N. officials hope “as many people will board the train as possible,” he added.

The Darfur rebels took up arms in 2003, accusing the Arab-dominated Sudanese government of discrimination against the ethnically African villagers of Darfur. The rebels and international groups say the government responded in part by arming militias, known as Janjaweed, although the government denies that. The fighting has left as many as 450,000 people dead and driven more than 2.5 million from their homes.

The U.S. envoy for Sudan, Andrew S. Natsios, said in an interview late last week that the Libya talks were “the beginning of a process. It’s real. It’s going to happen.”

The obstacles are many.

The Darfur talks have become snarled in the fraying of a peace deal in a separate conflict in Sudan, the 21-year civil war between north and south that killed an estimated 2 million people.

Southern rebel leaders last month pulled out of a power-sharing government set up by a 2005 peace deal. The southern rebels accused Sudan’s government of reneging on most parts of their pact, including by allegedly remilitarizing the oil-rich border regions between north and south.

The Washington Post late Wednesday obtained a copy of a report due to be made public next week by an international panel monitoring compliance with the 2005 accord. The report notes that key parts of the deal have yet to be achieved, including reconciliation efforts and resolution of disputes over the border.

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to discuss the north-south accord and Darfur in a meeting Thursday in Washington with Salva Kiir Mayardit, a southern rebel leader who became a vice president in the Sudanese government under the power-sharing accord.

Fresh approaches to the problems are hard to come by.

The United States already has imposed more sanctions on Sudan than any country in the world, said Ted Dagne, an expert on Africa with the Congressional Research Service. Sudan’s economy has grown despite the sanctions, as China, India, Malaysia and other countries remain eager to do business.

Natsios in recent days proposed revising some of the terms of the north-south peace accord, officials close to the talks said. Such a move would risk opening the full accord for renegotiation. Natsios said by telephone Tuesday that the proposal was no longer on the table.

But sources said that Natsios was still pushing southern officials Wednesday to accept his plan and that it remained on the agenda with Rice. “This is the opening up” of the full accord, Kiir said Wednesday night in an interview in Washington. “I don’t agree with this plan.”

Watching the terms of the 2005 north-south agreement go unfulfilled has been a “major disincentive” for the Darfur rebels, Dagne said.

Experts say the international community must do more to ensure that already signed agreements are carried out, Dagne said.

For Darfur, that includes giving a U.N.-African Union peacekeeping force scheduled to begin work next year the mission of safeguarding the return of Darfur civilians now living in camps, he said.

“Without implementation of existing agreements, you can have three or four or five agreements, and you are still not going to end the violence in Darfur,” Dagne said.

Leaders of one of the oldest Darfur rebel groups, the Justice and Equality Movement, said this week they would not attend the round of talks in December unless lesser rebel groups were barred.

Another point of contention is the talks’ host, Gaddafi.

Envoys and experts in Darfur said Gaddafi has backed both sides in the conflict at different times.

In the late 1980s, Gaddafi supported an armed “Islamic Legion” that fought an unsuccessful battle against the government of Chad, which borders Libya and Sudan. Those fighting on Gaddafi’s side included the first Janjaweed Arab militias, said Alex de Waal, a longtime scholar of Sudan.

At the end of the conflict in Chad, the Janjaweed militiamen retreated to their home region of Darfur, taking with them Gaddafi’s weapons and his message of Arab pride, de Waal said. Today, the militiamen are accused of killing and raping people and razing villages in Darfur. “If he hadn’t inflamed the conflict in Chad and brought in all those weapons, I don’t think we would have a conflict in Darfur now,” de Waal said.

Gaddafi’s selection as host of the Darfur talks was supposed to mark his transformation from pariah to statesman, after the lifting of U.N., U.S. and European Union sanctions against his country.

Word at the talks, however, was that Gaddafi became enraged when two key rebel leaders refused to attend. Gaddafi swept into the talks and declared the Darfur conflict a tribal dispute that the international community should stay out of.

Fawzi, the U.N. mediation spokesman, said there were no plans to change the venue of the talks.

Categories: United Nations

>More incompetent than Hans Blix? Meet Mohamad ElBaradei.

October 29, 2007 Leave a comment

>The incompetence with which Hans Blix is generally regarded as having carried out his duties as head of the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency was expected to take some topping.

Unfortunately, his successor Mohamad ElBaradei has given a whole new definition to the term ‘incompetence’ and in the same way that Middle East journalist Robert Fisk’s name has become a verb – to ‘fisk’ – it would be appropriate if the same happened with ElBaradei to describe situations in which people or authorities, duly tasked with being in charge of a process or outcome, fail singularly in that task due to gross professional incompetence.

For example:

“Why hasn’t the United Nations resolved the issues in Darfur?”

“Oh, they’re too busy ElBaradeing.”

(Note that Google returns zero results for ‘elbaradeing’…it’s unusual to make up any term and not find it already thought of previously).

From Pakistan to North Korea to India and to Iraq the IAEA has been shown to be profoundly ineffective as those countries went about developing nuclear weapons capabilities, some successfully and some not, right under the noses of the watchdog.

The IAEA is the agency that is meant to be aware of the development of nuclear technologies around the world.

In spite of all of the evidence that Iran is building nuclear weapons (read Kenneth Timmerman’s book – Countdown To Crisis, amongst others) including the fact that the centrifuges they’ve installed are only used for the production of weapons grade material, ElBaradei defends Iran, says they’re not trying to build nuclear weapons and berates the United States for overstating the case.

CHIEF UN atomic watchdog Mohamed ElBaradei said overnight he had no evidence Iran was building nuclear weapons and accused US leaders of adding “fuel to the fire” with recent bellicose rhetoric.

“I have not received any information that there is a concrete active nuclear weapons program going on right now,” the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) told CNN.

Last month the IAEA was caught with its pants down by Israel’s destruction of a nuclear development facility in Syria. The Syrian’s were so outraged (at getting caught) that they said almost nothing, expressing very minor outrage at what was an act of war by Israel. Whatever was bombed was clearly so secret that the Syrians wasted no time covering it up, as the before and after pictures below show:

What was ElBaradei’s response? He’s from the UN so, of course, it’s blame Israel time.

The head of the U.N. nuclear watchdog criticized Israel on Sunday for attacking a suspicious Syrian site last month, saying the “bomb first and then ask questions later” undermined global atomic monitoring work.

In his first public comment on Israel’s mysterious bombing run on what some analysts suggested was a nascent Syrian nuclear reactor, Mohamed ElBaradei, the chief of the International Atomic Energy Agency, called on the Israelis and other countries to share information with IAEA.

Israel has spent nearly 60 years sharing information with UN agencies and finding it used against them so it’s understandable that they’d take things into their own hands in this circumstance.

But Israel’s attack is not the main issue. The elephant in the IAEA’s padded cell is that it was completely unaware of Syria’s nuclear facility up until Israel’s action.

One of the under-reported benefits of toppling Saddam Hussein is that Libya voluntarily ceased its own nuclear program. Did the IAEA know about Tripoli’s dabbling in the odd bit of atom splitting? Of course not.

The IAEA didn’t even know about Iran’s program until it was well under way. Given that both China and Russia had been helping build the thing and they’re members of the UN’s Security Council it shows not only how clueless the IAEA is but also what a joke the Security Council has become given its charter of maintaining international peace and security. Letting a regime that thinks the twelfth Imam’s return is just around the corner, and the decisive conflict with the Jewish state is nigh, have nuclear weapons seems to be at least a tad at odds with the charter and just a little bit unwise.

What other rogue states are there in the process of quietly developing nuclear weapons? Is the nutjob that runs Venezuela heading down that path? Who knows? If anyone does then ElBaradei and his cronies will be the last to, that’s for sure.

(Nothing follows)

Categories: United Nations

>Lancet pot calls UN’s kettle black

September 22, 2007 Leave a comment

>This has to be the irony of all ironies. Britain’s The Lancet medical journal, creator of the widely discredited report that 700,000+ civilians have died in Iraq since the start of the current war, accuses UNICEF of fudging its numbers on global child mortality. Given The Lancet’s immoral use of its once proud pages to influence the 2004 US Presidential election (as admitted by its editor) by using profoundly dodgy survey techniques to come up with their Iraq figure, the attack on the UN seems somewhat, well, hypocritical.

A top medical journal on Thursday accused U.N. agencies of playing “fast and loose” with scientific data, and faulted UNICEF for what it called the hasty release of global child mortality figures.

The Lancet medical journal criticized the way the United Nations Children’s Fund announced last week that worldwide deaths of children under 5 had fallen below 10 million in 2006, which UNICEF hailed as a public health milestone.

The Lancet also faulted the way the World Health Organization used research data on a key method of preventing malaria — using bed nets treated with insecticides to ward off the mosquitoes that spread the disease.

The Lancet editorial said WHO ignored certain limitations in the study in making a public statement about the use of the bed nets.

“Both of these examples show how U.N. agencies are willing to play fast and loose with scientific findings in order to further their own institutional interests,” the Lancet said in an editorial.

“The danger is that by appearing to manipulate science, breach trust, resist competition, and reject accountability, WHO and UNICEF are acting contrary to responsible scientific norms that one would have expected U.N. technical agencies to uphold. Worse, they risk inadvertently corroding their own long-term credibility,” according to the Lancet editorial.

The Lancet said the agency annually publishes child mortality data in December and suggested UNICEF rushed this year’s release to make it public before the journal published a more critical assessment on Thursday, in the same issue as the editorial.

In the assessment published in Lancet, Christopher Murray, a professor of global health at the University of Washington and a former WHO official, estimated that between 9.5 and 10 million children under 5 died in 2005

His team concluded there had been too little progress in reducing child deaths, writing, “Globally, we are not doing a better job of reducing child mortality now than we were three decades ago.”

A UNICEF spokeswoman said the agency had done nothing wrong in releasing the child mortality figures as it did.

“UNICEF first announced that the under-5 mortality figures were likely to fall below 10 million at two major conferences in June,” the agency said in a statement.

“As soon as we had confidence in a more precise figure (9.7 million), we also made this available. UNICEF hopes that the progress revealed by the new figure will act as a spur for greater urgency to achieve the child survival goals,” the statement added.

UNICEF said last week global efforts to promote childhood immunization, breast-feeding and anti-malaria measures had helped cut the death rate of children under age 5 by nearly a quarter since 1990 and more than 60 percent since 1960.

Categories: Media, United Nations

>International law not for everybody

September 20, 2007 Leave a comment

>Shock, horror. Warlords in Congo have little regard for international law.

A warlord in eastern Congo is continuing to recruit child soldiers, in violation of international law, United Nations officials say.

Why would an African warlord give two hoots for international law? What do the UN officials say to him? “Excuse me, sir, but recruiting children as soldiers is in violation of international law” to which the warlord responds with a lofty shake of the head, narrowing of the eyes and, through clenched teeth, “How do your international laws help me?” For some reason, those on the left that make up 99% of those that work at the UN think that making laws will somehow do more than diddlysquat. In countries that respect the law, the left’s predilection for making laws has one effect – to reduce individual liberty. But that’s another matter.

The UN “has confirmed that children are being recruited by different armed groups, especially by the rebel forces of warlord Laurent Nkunda,” said Michel Bonnardeaux, a spokesman for the UN Mission in Congo.

The number of children that have been forcibly recruited is not yet known, Bonnardeaux said Wednesday.

Since last week, Nkunda’s men “have raided 10 secondary schools and four primary schools where they took the children by force in order to make them join their ranks,” said Nephtali Nkizinkiko, a deputy in the national assembly.

Nkunda’s rebels clashed with Congo’s army last month in the eastern province of Nord-Kivu, causing thousands of villagers to flee their homes.

According to Bonnardeaux, girls are taken to serve as sexual slaves, while boys are used as fighters. Those that try to escape are often rerecruited by rival armed groups, based in the volatile east.

The fact is that boys are happy to join these armed groups/gangs because it’s the best way to get a regular feed.

Congo’s Nord-Kivu province has been the scene of repeated clashes since late last year – first after Nkunda resisted integrating his forces into the regular army, and then as army brigades mounted operations against local armed groups.

A peace deal brought multiparty elections last year and the mineral-rich Congo installed its first democratically elected leader in more than four decades in January. The new government has struggled to gain control of militias loyal to former warlords, even as their leaders have joined the government.

Keep on making those useless laws, United Nations. And don’t forget to appoint representatives of the most thuggish, brutal regimes to the Human Rights Council while you’re at it.

Categories: Africa, United Nations

>Why does the UN not do anything tangible in Darfur?

September 12, 2007 Leave a comment

>A human disaster is taking place in Darfur.

It has been going on for years.

How many UN Resolutions are there condemning Sudan?

None.


Morally bankrupt. Hopelessly corrupt. Welcome to the United Nations.

Categories: United Nations

>United Nations to outlaw "Islamophobia"?

>That most morally depraved of organisations, the United Nations, is preparing itself to support Muslim nations’ position to deal with the world-ending problem of “Islamophobia”.

“Islamophobia” and the defamation of Islam are the most conspicuous forms of racism and intolerance today, and a global U.N. conference on racism planned for 2009 should come up with practical solutions to deal with them, an Islamic bloc representative told a preparatory meeting in Geneva Monday.

The 2009 meeting is intended to review a U.N. conference on racism, held in Durban, South Africa, just days before 9/11, but the 56-nation Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC) wants Islam to be high on the agenda.

“The world since 2001 has not remained static and witnessed new forms of racism and racial discrimination,” Pakistan’s representative to the U.N., Masood Khan, said at a meeting of the planning body, or “prepcom bureau,” according to prepared remarks.

Speaking on behalf of the OIC, Khan told the meeting that “there has been a stark rise in hate crimes, discrimination, racial profiling and intolerance against Muslims in many countries.”

He also said the 2009 gathering should focus on “the continued plight of Palestinian people and non-recognition of their inalienable right to self-determination.”

Khan’s reference to the Palestinian situation suggests that if the planning body has its way, the review conference may echo a major theme of the 2001 Durban meeting. Critics, including the U.S. government, said the Durban conference was tarnished by a strong anti-Israel bias, as some participants tried to revive the U.N.’s earlier “Zionism equals racism” position.

The 2009 meeting is currently being called the “Durban review conference.” Critics have labeled it “Durban II” – not a reference to the venue, which has yet to be decided, but because they predict a repeat of some of the controversies that prompted a walk-outby the U.S. delegation in 2001.

The Hudson Institute’s “Eye on the U.N.” project, which is observing the process in Geneva, described it Monday as the U.N.’s “latest anti-Jewish and anti-American extravaganza.”

U.N.-watchers’ concerns have been reinforced by the appointment of Libya to chair the prepcom bureau, and the inclusion among its 20 members of countries such as Cuba, Iran and Pakistan. The countries were elected by the U.N. Human Rights Council, a body, which has itself been criticized by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and others for a skewed emphasis on Israel.

Iran’s delegate, Seyed Mohammad Kazem Sajjadpour, referred in his speech Monday to “new forms of racism” after 9/11, “under the pretext of so-called war against terror.”

The envoy for another prepcom bureau member, Egypt, speaking on behalf of the African nations, raised concerns including “the Israeli occupation of Palestine” and the publication by a Danish newspaper of cartoons caricaturing Mohammed, “which deeply hurt over a billion Muslims around the world.”

The Egyptian delegate also decried the “largely insufficient” steps taken since 2001 “to redress and reverse the situation of the descendants of the victims of the transatlantic slave trade.”

Along with Zionism, slavery was one of the issues that caused dissent in Durban.

The document that came out of the Durban conference “note[d] that some States have taken the initiative to apologize and have paid reparation, where appropriate, for grave and massive violations committed [in the slave trade].”

“We further note that some have taken the initiative of regretting or expressing remorse or presenting apologies, and call on all those who have not yet contributed to restoring the dignity of the victims to find appropriate ways to do so …” it added.

Islamophobia is, of course, a construction by activist Muslim organisations used as a label against enemies of its violent, expansionist doctrine.

When part of the evidence are the cartoons published in a Danish newspaper you know that the intolerance bar will be set at an intolerantly low level.

Categories: Islam, United Nations