US vs. UN

Response to Chicago Tribune's "The UN and Sheriff Bolton" The September 14 editorial titled “The UN and Sheriff Bolton” claims that the United Nations has been corrupt for years and that finally the United States is standing up to this world body and demanding reform. “Americans can be proud of their government's long overdue assault on UN timidity, negligence and corruption” wrote the editorial board. Unfortunately there is absolutely no blame placed on the United States for the current obsoleteness of the United Nations.

The board seems to believe that all nations but America want the United Nations to remain unchanged. They assert that “…too many nations have stakes in the derelict status quo.” They fail to mention that the United States also wants the status quo maintained. For years the American government has ignored its responsibility to the world community, using its power on the Security Council to put an end to any UN efforts that it did not agree with.

Examples include the United States vetoing more than 70 resolutions since the inception of the United Nations. Most of these resolutions were supported by a majority of member states. Over 30 were critical of Israeli actions against Palestinians, and one reason why the conflict has yet to be resolved is because any real effort by the United Nations to take action against Israel has been stopped by the U.S. veto.

The United States has been indifferent and hostile to the United Nations. It has acted several times unilaterally instead of waiting for this international organization to discuss and choose the moral path of action. American governments have withheld dues to ensure the UN Secretary General fully understands that all the United Nations does must be approved by the United States.

John Bolton is not doing anything extraordinary by criticizing the United Nations and calling for reforms. The extraordinary thing will be if he or some American official finally admits the United States has cared more for its national interests than ensuring the United Nations becomes a viable organization for the entire world.