New World Order & United Nations

A talk given at London Region CND AGM

Vijay Mehta

The New World order or disorder is a world full of disregard & violation for all international laws, United Nations resolutions and Nuclear Weapons treaties. It is a world of unilaterism, pre-emptive or preventive strikes.

The rationale behind it is that America has the liberty of re-arranging Countries & leaders of the world in tune with Washington’s likes, desires & interests. If it has to bomb other Countries into submission & install puppet regimes, so be it.

America has designs and fantasies of emulating Roman or British Empire all over again. In the words of Ronald Reagan “theirs is the promised land”. This conceit and ambition today rests on the secure base of its democratic culture, matchless wealth and egalitarianism. The belief that they are in God land has given them powerful legitimating for expansion and intervention. It has encouraged them to confuse their own foreign policy objectives of fervent imperialism with the global good. They have found it hard to accept that their actions have resulted in genocide when they bombed Baghdad, Kabul and Belgrade. It has resulted in hatred or what is known as anti-Americanism and laid foundations for further terrorist acts.

The dangerous consequences of American credo of right to undertake pre-emptive strikes against sovereign states will allow other countries to follow suit. Australian prime Minister John Howard has already stirred a hornets nest in his neighbourhood after the attack on Bali by stating that he will strike any of its near by states if he felt a terrorist attack was in the offing. And Russian president Vladimir Putin had already claimed the right to attack targets in neighbouring Georgia to protect his countries interest in Chechnya. India can strike against Pakistan or the other way around. Both the governments who possess nuclear weapons are vulnerable and ready to deflect public opinion away from domestic problems and rising unpopularity.

The trend towards the New World order is wholly supported by UK, most loyal ally of America. In the Iraq issue ( most burning at the moment ) UK has supported America by sending troops and producing dossier on the evil nature of Saddam & his regime. President Bush is fully prepared to go to war soon for deposing Saddam, the task which his father had left undone.

Iraq has so for complied with the UN resolution – opening its sites to the UN inspectors and supplying all the information requested in a large mountain of paperwork. The truth of the matter is that UN inspectors have not found any surprises. Moreover it is reported that United States government under the pretext of photocopying it and returning to UN officials first obtained the Iraq government’s dossier of 11800 pages. On this unbelievable excuse it become possible for United States to impose its own regulations on the distribution of the dossier. It is alleged that the five permanent members were acquainted with the full contents of the dossier. But it was quite widely reported that non – permanent members were acquainted with a shorter version of the dossier, excluding certain information about the technical details, which could be deemed to incriminate some western Companies who supplied materials for weapons of mass destruction and other military hardware. The Glasgow Sunday Herald published a story, which alleged that more than 8000 pages of the dossier submitted under resolution 1441 had been suppressed.

Still the right wing side of Bush administration are shouting publicly, “no war is not a option”. After going to UN security council even while protesting its right to act alone, the US will need a fig leaf to act outside the ambit of the world organisation. In any case it has to present its case to Security Council under the terms of its latest resolution, an arduous exercise if it fails to find a smoking gun.

President Bush has threatened to make the UN irrelevant if it does not toe the line of American policies and it will be free to conduct pre – emptive strikes against other countries. What cement is there to hold the world to broadly accepted norms of conduct and international law. The US alone does not have the capacity to run and police the world with proxies and satellites.

Are we to be condemned to a new world disorder. President Bush, after extracting a unanimous resolution on Iraq out of UN Security council is beginning to believe in his own propaganda and has set himself the task of ridding the world of most evil men in the “axis of evil”. There seems to be few checks and balances in the American system to stop him in his tracks.>

The Bush administration seems to be forgetting a few lessons of history and the new lessons of modern technology. Empires have risen and fallen depending upon the wisdom of the rulers and the correlation of forces that came to oppose them. Justice and a sense of fair play usually influence the duration of these empires. Injustice perpetrated on the Palestinian people and the self-proclaimed opportunism of America declaring its desire to remain supreme for all time to come are pointers to eventual doom.

Besides, the progress of modern technology has two consequences. For one thing, it telescopes time. If empires lasted for centuries in the past, their longevity has been reduced to decades in the age of the Internet and information technology. Second, as America rudely discovered on September 11, 2001, technology empowers the weak to seek revenge with devastating results. In immediate terms, there is no option but to meet terrorism frontally, but the longer term answer can only lie in removing the cause of the great injustices perpetrated on peoples. Whatever religion or faith a nation practises, if a country, particularly the most powerful, loses sight of the moral compass, it will come to grief.

Another spin of modern technology is that it is catching up fast with the present world crises. Computer companies, after the launch of Counter Strike and Battlefield 1942 have already launched a game called New World Order- NWO for short. New World Order is set-up practically identical to counter-strikes, terrorists (syndicate) verses the global assault team engaged in bomb planting, hostage rescuing, VIP escorting or outright annihilation. Such is the hideous nature of our civilisation that the destruction of countries and death of innocent civilians, children and women is being turned into a game of entertainment to be played by children and adults and is a way for money spinning by mega computer companies.

The stakes for a future American attack on Iraq are indeed high. It will expose West Asia to years of turmoil, exacerbated by American partisanship in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The tragedy is that if America goes to war on Iraq, it would enhance, rather then diminish, the scourge of terrorism it is fighting.

Can the world community stop this attack? Can the United Nations produce a peaceful settlement of the Iraq issue? Only the future will tell. But one thing is certain that because of the UN security Council resolution & the visits of UN weapon inspectors, the war on Iraq has been delayed by a few months and is still on hold. For once things have properly been followed through security council resolution, followed by visits by UN weapon inspectors. The larger question haunting the world, if not America, is the price of a non UN approved invasion of Iraq.

Can the new world order be reversed and sanity prevail? Can the UN do it? The answer is yes – it can. It has the mandate which says “member states shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such manner that international peace, security and justice are not endangered. We need to recall that the security council is bound by its charter and should not go against the spirit and letter of its commitment; to take all possible steps to prevent war and to refrain from intervention in the internal affairs of member states.

A reformed, democratic, transparent and accountable UN can produce the result. It also depend if all of us, civil society and NGO’s make a noise- loud enough for governments to take notice and back off. If the new world disorder is to be restored a critical and conditional support for the UN offer the best hope

(Vijay Mehta is vice-chair for Action for UN Renewal, secretary London Region CND and Editor of INLAP Time)