Wednesday, July 25, 2007

UN Offers No Solution for Taiwan

By Stanford Matthews
Blog @

The United Nations is experiencing difficulty in making new friends. This week the UN denied Taiwan's application for membership to the United Nations. Taiwan has been regularly applying for membership and been continuously denied for the last fourteen years. While Taiwan and Mainland China parted company after a civil war in 1949, the relationship or connection between them has been disputed since. It would be fair to say that Taiwan views itself as independent while China does not. The opinions of other countries may be more a matter of international politics than their honest assessment of any sovereign status, if known.

In a press release from the website of the Government Information Office, Republic of China (Taiwan),
officials reference their right for UN membership, in part, based on the UN's Charter Preamble. The UN's ideal of equality for mankind is one argument Taiwan employs to justify their right to membership. They cite China's interference and the UN violating its own principles of universal membership

Taiwan insists they qualify for membership and 3/4 of their population favors membership in international organizations. Their is a summary of Taiwan's economic ranking, successes and strengths. The remainder of the points made are probably subject to challenge which may explain some of the difficulty in gaining membership. And Taiwan appears to be interested in taking advantage of some benefits of membership as well as contributing their particular expertise to the international community. The references to this point were provided by the GIO of Taiwan.

After searching the UN website for an extended period of time, nothing on the subject was found. That may explain why the AP report specified their information came from the Chinese language version of the UN's internet presence. The AP report indicates Taiwan was expelled from the UN in 1971 based on a resolution recognizing the People's Republic of China as legal owner of a seat at the UN.

Both China and the United States as well as other UN members have an ugly history in this lengthy dispute. The civil war mentioned earlier featured prominent historical figures such as Mao Tse-Tung (Mao Zedung), Chiang Kai-shek and George Marshall of the famed Marshall Plan. Mao and Chiang were leaders of the opposing sides in the civil war and Marshall brokered a peace deal that later failed with Mao victorious in the civil war and Chiang fleeing to Taiwan.

There were several resolutions in 1971 on questions of who gets to keep the seat at the UN. Part of the chronology from and account at Wikipedia indicates the civil war never ended and that Taiwan is a rebel government. One resolution indicates the US offered an arrangement where People's Republic of China and Taiwan retain membership. It is outside the scope of this post to attempt to draw a conclusion on such a muddy, complicated chronology of events. It would not be out of the realm of possibilities to assume there was a great deal of questionable international politics at play resulting in the outcome. It is also possible that Taiwan's intentions are not completely innocent. And there are suggestions that China would attack Taiwan if it attempts a move to independence.

This post is simply intended to add to the chronicle of the UN and the pointless exercise that it is. As mentioned by the GIO of Taiwan, the UN's own charter claims to offer universal membership and to treat all nations equally. That hardly seems to be the case here although it is not the only denial of membership on record. But there is no indication the UN offered any reason for the rejection. Taiwan contends the application should be discussed by the General Assembly but the Secretary General simply returned the application without comment.

Even if all involved are masking their true intentions the fact remains the noble ideas and intentions presented to justify the UN's existence have never been realized. And there is no evidence to support they ever will. This is merely political and public relations cover for the typical maneuvers that take place between nations of the world. The promise of the UN is about as empty as WWI being called the war to end all wars.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

The UN Peacekeeping Oxymoron

By Stanford Matthews
Blog @

All the pretense associated with the United Nations is not lost on the plethora of naming conventions for committees, groups and delegations, etc., or the quagmire of documentation chronicling the abundance of meetings, conferences, proposals, recommendations, reports and other tasks to cloud a history of inaction.

This may sound familiar or even redundant but needs to be emphasized to counter the UN's practice of covering their mistakes, corruption and misdeeds an infinite PR campaign. This situation might get more exposure if the member nations were dissatisfied or outraged by the subtle, arrogant and criminal negligence involved. But then they would need to admit their obstruction of justice or complicity in the scheme.

The chosen topic for this post is a comparison between media reports of UN personnel involved in criminal behavior that has been largely overlooked or ignored and even subject to cover up by this international organization and the predictable empty response from the General Assembly this week.

Another committee from the UN has approved proposals and recommendations for standards of conduct of the peacekeeping forces at the UN. It is a draft resolution to eliminate future sexual abuse and exploitation by members of the peacekeeping forces. This will be included in a memorandum of understanding between the UN and member nations who supply the forces. Aside from this bringing to mind the fox guarding the chicken coop, what possible effect can a memo have to member nations supplying troops if the troops have already proven their disregard for maintaining their conduct to common sense and normal moral codes of behavior?

Here are some example reports of the types of crimes and length of time without any known corrective action or criminal proceedings. Feel free to comment or complain about the research of this post if you have information about such remedies. Here are the example reports:

ABC News: 2/10/05: U.N. Sex Crimes in Congo
The range of sexual abuse includes reported rapes of young Congolese girls by U.N. troops; an Internet pedophile ring run from Congo by Didier Bourguet, ...

UN 'ignored' abuse at Kosovo mental homes | Special reports ...

UN 'ignored' abuse at Kosovo mental homes. Oliver Burkeman in New York Thursday August 8, 2002 The Guardian. Patients at United Nations mental institutions ...,2763,770954,00.html

U.N. Finally Forced to Probe Its Pedophilia Scandal

In the meantime, U.N. agencies and many of the NGOs were busy at work putting in place new checks and balances in the field to prevent sexual abuse of ...

As you can see, these reports are from 2002 and 2005. It is the middle of 2007 and the UN has finally approved a draft resolution for a memo to the troops to behave themselves. That must be welcome comfort to the victims of the abuse. Does this indicate Un peacekeeping forces are made up of mindless thugs with no conscience? Do they just round up a group of criminals to have their way with largely defenseless victims? These are essentially rhetorical questions based on the information provided.

Here is an excerpt from the press release of the UN this week. To read it will require that you restrain the natural tendency to choke the life out of someone who rightly deserves it. That this organization can continue to operate with such total disregard for every principle they were intended to maintain is beyond understanding. Here's the excerpt:

By further provisions of the revised memorandum of understanding, United Nations peacekeeping personnel, accorded certain privileges and immunities arranged through agreements negotiated between the United Nations and host country solely for the purpose of discharging peacekeeping duties, agree, among other things, to: conduct themselves in a professional and disciplined manner at all times; respect local laws, customs and practices; treat host country inhabitants with respect, courtesy and consideration; and act with impartiality, integrity and tact and report all acts involving sexual exploitation and abuse. They also agree to encourage proper conduct among fellow peacekeeping personnel and to properly account for all money and property assigned to them as mission members.

Later in the document there is mention of establishing another group that may consider providing assistance to the victims of their own troops from member nations. But there is no mention of criminal proceedings against the perpetrators.

If you feel the need or have the time, mention this story and/or others like it to your elected representatives the next chance you get. This is one time when I would not expect much response. But it will give you a profound indication of the gravity of the situation. Media accounts, investigative reports, public comments and other measures have rolled off the backs of officials that could do something. But this is how it is done at the United Nations. This entity needs to be eliminated. It serves no purpose for which it was intended. More later after some time to recover from the disgust this generates. Thanks for reading.

Monday, July 16, 2007

United Nations: Iraqi children less safe than a year ago

By Todd Anthony

According to Dan Toole, director of Emergency Programs for the United Nations Children’s Fun, “"Children today are much worse off than they were a year ago, and they certainly are worse off than they were three years ago."

Indirectly, that MUST be the fault of the United States, right?

Toole added that “Iraqis no longer have safe access to a government-funded food basket, established under Saddam Hussein to deal with international sanctions.”

I read this Associated Post report and couldn’t help but laugh. While no one is claiming that Iraqi is a modern day Babylonian utopia, would Iraqi civilians rather live under the Hussein regime?

Furthermore, taking the violence into account, let’s play the blame game for a second. Who is responsible for the current situation in Iraq?

Naturally, it HAS to be America’s fault right and its poor post-war prosecution, as well as the weak-willed defeatists on the Left?

Or is it the Nouri al-Maliki government, which has allowed cronyism and sectarian differences grossly interfere with running a credible?

Or could it be that the problem lies with the Iraqi people themselves for their failure to put aside ethnic and religious differences and take advantage of an extraordinary opportunity to forge a new, democratic Iraqi.

Sadly, while the first two reasons contribute to Iraqi state of affairs, the third reason very much belies lack of progress throughout the Muslim world. It is this incessant xenophobia that grips Muslim countries and produces terrorism. This fear of differing opinions has the mosques in its clutches.

This report clearly trumpets the “successful Oil-for-Food” program administered between 1991 and 2003. What the report fails to mention is the gross overindulgences of the Saddam government and the corruption that plagued the United Nations in its dealings with Saddam.

Toole adds the following, “Apart from shortages of items such as milk and baby milk formula, ‘the basic Iraqi food basket was fairly secure under the regime because there was food coming in and the government provided the food basket to its citizens.’”

Nevermind that children in general desperately require milk as a source for protein and calcium, other facets of the food program worked well, other than the random kidnappings, torture, and killings that occurred endlessly for those deemed to be political dissidents or anti-Baathist.

Aside from the Oil-for-Food program’s basic operations, the program essentially suffered from widespread corruption and abuse. For example, Benon Sevan, the program’s primary caretaker, refused to allow review and investigation into the program. He also stated that illegal payoff complaints should be formally filed with the whistleblower’s country of origin. As a result, Iraq could bar anyone who filed a report. Finally, Sevan ordered the shredded of several years worth of documentation.

Ultimately, an American-backed investigation, led by Paul Volcker, revealed that profits were used to curry favor with the UN and Secretary-General Kofi Annan. Also, Sevan had accepted over a hundred thousand dollars win bribes. That report and as well as other media reports concluded that 15,000 revealed a litany of individuals and programs that received oil sale contracts through the program, including several European outfits.

Perhaps before the United Nations publishes any Iraqi report it claims as facts, it needs to preface any such report describing its down-right criminal role in the Oil-for-Food program.

Coupled with its almost-inept positions in Darfur and Iran, does the United Nations really have ANY credibility? Or rather, is it more a Left-leaning institution completely unsuited to handle 21st century issues?

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Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Nations United by Empty Promise

By Stanford Matthews
Blog @

In their own words from information on their own site, the United Nations once again proves their incompetence or arrogance that borders on criminal negligence. If an organization allows itself to be characterized as an international effort to which all member nations contribute on behalf of the world's citizens, why does it fail to accomplish goals of any substance in pursuit of world peace, human rights and the like?

It is because they have taken bureaucracy to a level never before seen in human history. The most common headlines in the world press regarding the UN feature phrases like, 'the UN calls for' or 'the UN urges' or 'the UN discusses' or other impotent and meaningless statements. All member nations are to some degree complicit in this sham organization's conspiracy to commit fraud. While there may be individuals at the UN with good intentions and impressive skill sets for such endeavors, blame can be shared by all if you subscribe to the notion if you are not part of the solution, your are part of the problem.

A brief trip through the UN's own chronology of progress on reforms in 2006 will help illustrate these points. The key problems and habitual UN responses to a needed action are in bold type.

November 9

The Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on UN System-wide Coherence in the areas of Development, Humanitarian Assistance and the Environment delivers its report “delivering as One” to the General Assembly with far-reaching proposals for a more unified, coherent UN structure at the country level.


The Secretariat issues the “United Nations Secretariat First Consolidated Report 2005”, covering both financial and programme information for the year 2005, and is a first step in improving Secretariat reporting to the Member States.

20 July

In resolution 59/283, the General Assembly requested the Secretary-General to form a panel of external, independent experts to review and redesign the United Nations administration of justice system. The “Justice Redesign Panel” subsequently submitted comprehensive and far-reaching proposals for a new model for resolving staff grievances.

10 July

The Steering Committee for the “Comprehensive Review of Governance and Oversight with the UN and its Funds, Programmes, and Specialized Agencies” submits its 2005 World Summit-mandated review to the Secretary-General.

7 July

The General Assembly, in response to the Secretary-General’s 7 March report, decided to approve a modest package of reforms granting the Secretary-General limited budgetary discretion, approving the creation of a Chief Information Technology Officer and endorsing, in principle, the development of a Enterprise Resource Planning system for the Organization.

2 May

The Secretary-General presented his report “Uniting Against Terrorism” (A/60/825). This report presents elements for a counter-terrorism strategy as presented in Madrid in March 2005.


The General Assembly elected the first 47 members of the new Human Rights Council. While the new membership has drawn criticism from some critics as “old wine in new bottles,” the reformed election procedures (GA vote and absolute majority) were effective in dissuading some countries from running and provided a greater degree of transparency.

10 April

More stringent guidelines on financial disclosure and declaration of interests issued, designed to include more senior managers, procurement officers, and those who invest the assets of the organization.

3 April

Human Rights Council established, designed to allow for a more rigorous implementation and monitoring of human rights, replacing the Human Rights Commission.

30 March

A report entitled “Mandating and delivering: analysis and recommendations to facilitate the review of mandates” is issued following the General Assembly’s request for a review of mandates older than five years.

22 March

A policy on the “Acceptance of Pro Bono Goods and Services” is introduced for the purpose of preventing conflicts of interests with service providers and contractors in the context of the organization accepting free offers of support to various humanitarian, peacekeeping, and other UN operations.

7 March

The Secretary-General, in response to the request contained in the Outcome Document from the member states, presents his management report “Investing in the United Nations: for a stronger Organisation worldwide” containing 22 far-reaching reform proposals.

1 January Ethics Office begins operations, responsible for managing and overseeing the new Whistleblower protection and revised financial disclosure policies, as well as the development of Ethics training programmes for staff.

As you can see, that is just great. Reports, panels, guidelines, elections, policies and more reports, panels, guidelines, elections and policies. Where is the performance? Where are the results? The Middle East is still as it was. Darfur is still in turmoil. Terrorist groups are still active. People are still starving. Africa still languishes in conflict and disaster. Where is their one success that can be attributed to the UN? If you know of one, kindly inform the rest of us as there appears to be little indication of reform at the UN changing anything or any evidence of a significant contribution by any action originating from the United Nations.

The United Nations is nothing more than a platform for member nations to, at best, feign concern and, at worst, conspire to manipulate common diplomatic tricks and international funds in pursuit of multinational agendas. Many look to governments to cure ills in the world with public funds. The UN maintains, supports and advances that fallacy. All the while enriching the lives of its participants and ignoring the 'global community' it claims to serve.

Friday, July 06, 2007

China Hides Intentions Behind UN

By Stanford Matthews
Blog @

There is reason to believe that Russian President Vladimir Putin longs for the days when they were an undisputed superpower. The recent strain with President Bush over missile defense in Europe and the former Soviet Bloc may just be another symptom that relations between the two countries are not well. Ending up on opposite sides of most arguments at the UN at least signal vastly different international objectives. But that may pale in comparison to the maneuvering of China and their use of the UN and 'diplomatic' efforts in regard to the hostile positions of Iran.

China urges diplomacy on Iran standoff

Tue Jul 3, 6:49 PM ET

UNITED NATIONS - China called Tuesday for stepped up diplomacy rather than new sanctions to try to persuade Iran to suspend uranium enrichment and rein in its nuclear program.

U.N. Ambassador Wang Guangya spoke after the United States started discussions on a third round of tougher sanctions against Iran for refusing to freeze enrichment and China's opposition signaled a tough fight ahead in the Security Council for Washington and its European allies.

Well of course China prefers meaningless negotiations with a country quite comfortable ignoring demands from the international community that they cease their nuclear ambitions and agree to oversight by outside sources. The concern over China's thirst for oil as well as major economic expansion with nearly the same disregard of complaints as that shown by Iran are well founded. China as well as India are feverishly working out energy arrangements with Iran. Iran is in no position to ignore these overtures as their infrastructure and other internal problems are straining their economy and social stability. Just the kind of stress that has preceded other world conflicts resulting in war.

This pattern did not just develop. Here's a little reference on the subject from several years ago.

China and India wrestling for Iran's oil

Last Updated(Beijing Time):2004-11-22 09:12

As the fight between China and Japan and that between China and Vietnam for petroleum is still pending, India, a future big oil consumer, is competing with China for oil supply from the Middle East, especially Iran, which is beyond the control of the U.S.

And the opinions on the topic are showing no significant change while answers to solve these problems are long in coming. Perhaps some of the world's usual suspects for conflict and tension should understand they are not the only game in town.

Developing Asian nations pose an even greater challenge for U.S. efforts to isolate Iran. Both the China National Petroleum Corporation and the China National Offshore Oil Corporation recently announced plans to develop major liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects, respectively in South Pars and in North Pars. China's other major oil company, Sinopec, hopes to develop the Yadavaran oil field, which is expected to produce 300,000 barrels a day by 2010.

The most concerning news comes out of India, a country that is actually helping Iran alleviate its gasoline problem. It not only supplies some 15 percent of Iran's gasoline imports, but an Indian business conglomerate, the Essar group, is negotiating the construction of a 300,000 barrel per day refinery in southern Iran. Two years ago, New Delhi also signed a $40 billion LNG deal with Iran. India's domestic natural gas supply meets barely half its demand. Iran, which is geographically close to India, is a natural supplier. Tehran, which now wants to become India's exclusive natural gas supplier, is pushing for the construction of a $7 billion gas pipeline deal that would connect the two countries via Pakistan. This would make one billion Indians dependent upon one of the world's most radical regimes.


Other nations in world beyond Iran, India and China may find opposing the US and its efforts in foreign affairs are not really in their own best interests. If they believe the US is difficult to deal with they may be sorely surprised at the new found arrogance of the three just mentioned. It seems most reports go out of their way to ignore these particular implications.