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U.N. Should Change -- or U.S. Should Quit (Perle & Frum)

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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 11:58 AM
Original message
U.N. Should Change -- or U.S. Should Quit (Perle & Frum)
Aside from the Jr. High School logic and prose at work
here, I think Mr. Perle and Mr. Frum should concentrate on
extracting us from Iraq before moving on to getting us out
of the UN.


The United Nations is the tooth fairy of
American politics: Few adults believe in it, but
it's generally regarded as a harmless story to
amuse the children. Since 9/11, however, the
U.N. has ceased to be harmless, and the
Democratic presidential candidates' enthusiasm
for it has ceased to be amusing. The United
Nations has emerged at best as irrelevant to the
terrorist threat that most concerns us, and at
worst as an obstacle to our winning the war on
terrorism. It must be reformed. And if it cannot
be reformed, the United States should give
serious consideration to withdrawal.

The U.N. has become an obstacle to our national
security because it purports to set legal limits on
the United States' ability to defend itself. If these
limits ever made sense at all, they do not make
sense now.

Yet the U.N.'s assertion of them forces presidents
and policymakers into a horrible dilemma. If we
obey the U.N.'s rules, we compromise our
national security. If we defy them, we expose
ourselves to accusations of hypocrisy and
lawlessness.

According to the U.N. Charter, nations are
permitted to use military force only in two
situations. Article 51 of the charter recognizes an
"inherent" right to self-defense against attack. In
all other cases where a nation feels threatened, it is supposed to go to the
U.N. Security Council to seek authorization before it takes military
action - even action that might forestall an attack.

LA Times (Reg. Req.)
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lovedems Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 12:02 PM
Response to Original message
1. Thank God for the UN
Once again, rules are only good when we get to benefit from them. If they interfere with our agenda, they are useless and need to be changed.

Same thing can be said of the environmental laws, tax laws, corporate governance laws, etc. etc. etc.
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lefty_mcduff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 12:02 PM
Response to Original message
2. Neo-Cons have no use for the UN
It's their way, or the highway.

They don't seem to mind using UN resolutions as a pretext for thier wars. Can't have it both ways fellas.

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HawkerHurricane Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 12:17 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. See my sig line
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 12:22 PM
Response to Original message
4. Mommy, mommy, he made me do it!
"For the U.N., "aggression" means invasion across national borders. Send Nazi shock troops into Poland that's aggression. Give sanctuary to thousands of anti-American murderers, as the Taliban did in Afghanistan, that's not aggression."

Well, yes, that is the defintion of aggression. But they are ignoring Security Concil resolution 1368, passed on Sept 12th 2001:
"Calls on all States to work together urgently to bring to justice the perpetrators, organizers and sponsors of these terrorist attacks and stresses that those responsible for aiding, supporting or harbouring the perpetrators, organizers and sponsors of these acts will be held accountable;"
or Resolution 1373:
"Reaffirming further that such acts, like any act of international terrorism, constitute a threat to international peace and security, Reaffirming the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence as recognized by the Charter of the United Nations as reiterated in resolution 1368 (2001),"
and Resolution 1378:
"Condemning the Taliban for allowing Afghanistan to be used as a base for the export of terrorism by the Al-Qaida network and other terrorist groups and for providing safe haven to Usama Bin Laden, Al-Qaida and others associated with them, and in this context supporting the efforts of the Afghan people to replace the Taliban regime,"
in other words, the UN did not try to stop the US action in Afghanistan (ie the one that was actually related to terrorism) at all. It was practically a cheerleader.

"The French in particular benefit from pushing the United States to break the U.N.'s rules"

yeah sure, Chirac hypnotized Bush and used mind control to force him to lose 30 IQ points and lie his arse off about Iraq for 3 years.

Perle and Frum should be put in a class of 7 year olds to relearn basic English. And kindergarten to relearn how to stop acting like spoiled brats.
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Martin Eden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 01:07 PM
Response to Original message
5. The U.N. was proven to be correct, and the neocons wrong.
The one thing the Bush administration can be given credit for is getting the UN inspectors back into Iraq. But once they were in, their efforts were derided and their findings dismissed.

Now that the entire country has been scoured for WMD, it is obviously apparent that the UN inspections and sanctions had been very successful at eliminating Iraq's WMD and keeping a lid on Saddam's ambitions.

The neocons act as if the UN is determined to prevent the US from defending itself, but Iraq had nothing to do with terrorist attacks against the US, and the invasion diverted vital resources from the campaign against al Qaeda and their Taliban supporters in Afghanistan.

If anything, our allies France and Germany tried to prevent us from making a huge mistake, but the neocons would have none of it. They were determined to have their war, and have it they did.

If the US had complied with the international law of the UN, the terrorist threat would likely be much less than it is now, and if we had invested a fraction in Afghanistan what we've invested in Iraq, that country would be much further along in its development as a safe, secure, and stable model of democracy.

Instead, we are mired in two extremely problematical nation building operations, and making a mess of both of them.
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pscot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 08:23 PM
Response to Original message
6. Perle may be the most dangerous man in America
not currently holding high office. Frum is an idiot.
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 11:21 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. Perle is an idiot too.
"By their works shall ye know them", right?
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kskiska Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 12:31 AM
Response to Original message
8. I remember the reverence we had for the U.N. as kids
Our class made a field trip to the U.N. in the 50s when it was just about brand new. It was like going to church. It's so sad to see how these people have destroyed the mutual respect between the U.S. and the rest of the planet.
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Jack Rabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:13 AM
Response to Original message
9. This is mindless UN bashing
It's apropos of these two writers. No doubt that Perle provides the mean-spirited tone and Frum the shallow, fallacious arguments.

According to the U.N. Charter, nations are permitted to use military force only in two situations. Article 51 of the charter recognizes an "inherent" right to self-defense against attack. In all other cases where a nation feels threatened, it is supposed to go to the U.N. Security Council to seek authorization before it takes military action even action that might forestall an attack.
The trouble is that the U.N. defines aggression in outdated ways. For the U.N., "aggression" means invasion across national borders. Send Nazi shock troops into Poland that's aggression. Give sanctuary to thousands of anti-American murderers, as the Taliban did in Afghanistan, that's not aggression.

This is complete nonsense. I seem to remember something about an attack on US citizens on US soil on September 11, 2001 that was carried out by operatives of a terrorist organization that was permitted to operate in Afghanistan. I do not recall the UN standing in the way of the US in invading Afghanistan in order to shut down the terrorist camps there.

Of course, what Perle and Frum are whining about is that the US was not able to forestall and attack by invading Afghanistan pre-emptively to root out al Qaida before September 11. The problem is that if al Qaida doesn't attack, they're not terrorists. Consequently, before September 11, there would have been little popular support in the US -- and none whatsoever elsewhere -- for such an operation.

As Perle and Frum point out, under UN rules, the US could not move into Afghanistan until the terrorists. That is as it should be. Until the terrorists struck or until there was some tangible reason to think they would, there was no causus bellem that would justify invading Afghanistan.

What this boils down to is that Frum and Perle don't like the UN or any other international body or convention that prevents the US from going to war against any nation just because it has itch to do so.

These guys are just nuts.
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Martin Eden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 03:45 AM
Response to Original message
10. my LTTE in response to this nonsense
I just sent this to the L.A. Times:

David Frum and Richard Perle stretch the limits of credulity in their January 23 Commentary with the assertion that the U.N. has become an obstacle to our national security because it purports to set legal limits on the United States' ability to defend itself. They prattle on about Afghanistan but make no mention of Iraq, even though it was the latter that pitted U.S. policy against international law. Perhaps this is because they simply cant make the case that the invasion of Iraq was a legitimate act of self-defense.

Iraq was the first big test of the policy of preemptive war, in which we claim the right to invade any country perceived as a threat. The problem is that perception and reality can be two very different things, especially when intelligence is manipulated to hype a threat for political motives. The fact that no weapons of mass destruction or ties to al Qaeda have been found in Iraq makes a much better case for the U.N. Charter than for preemptive war.

But inconvenient facts dont deter the likes of Frum and Perle. They even accuse the French of pushing the United States to break the U.N.s rules. Gee, all along I thought it was the neoconservatives who were pushing Bush to break the rules. Im looking forward to their next commentary maybe well learn that the Germans were behind our withdrawal from the International Criminal Court.
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He loved Big Brother Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 05:02 AM
Response to Original message
11. The U.S. should change
And Perle should quit.
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Snappy Donating Member (322 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 05:10 AM
Response to Original message
12. Problem
The bigger problem is that these warmongers are in alliance with Cheney, Jeb Bush, Rove, Wolfowitz and others that influence Dubya.
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teryang Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 07:17 AM
Response to Original message
13. In the American regime-fascism rules
Only fascists could have written this drivel.
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Fovea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 12:24 PM
Response to Original message
14. A modest proposal
I firmly believe that all freedom loving people of the world should agree that when they witness anyone spewing this sort of nonsense, they should give them a severe beating, which must include a brutal kick to the nads.
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