The ‘Other’ Iraq Option
Vol: 23 Issue: 23 Saturday, August 23, 2003
UN Secretary General Kofi Annan responded to the US call for help with troops to maintain security in Iraq by hinting at a coming UN power grab in Iraq. He said that the US would get no help from the United Nations unless the US allowed the UN to take charge of Iraq s reconstruction.
Adding insult to the injury, Annan said that he was counting on US troops to provide security for its mission in Iraq, following the bombing of its Baghdad headquarters on Tuesday. In essence, Annan is threatening to leave the US twisting in the wind unless the US hands control over to him. And just to make things interesting, he tossed on the added burden of responsibility for protecting the UN as well.
It is important to remember, when considering the UN s fitness to take over Iraq s reconstruction, that the UN hired former Saddam intelligence agents to guard their facility. (The guards are suspected of helping the bombers.) The UN refused US security. And the truck carrying the bomb was traced to Syria, who is the current serving president of the UN Security Council.
But if the US wants any help in the form of any meaningful military aid, it will come at that impossible price. “It is not excluded that the [Security] Council may decide to transform the operation into a UN-mandated, multinational force operating on the ground with other governments coming in,” Annan told a press conference.
Then the kicker: “It would imply not just burden-sharing but also sharing decisions and responsibility with the others. If that doesn’t happen, I think it is going to be very difficult to get a second resolution that will satisfy everybody.”
Translation: If Washington doesn t allow the UN to take over the operation it messed up for more than twelve years, then the UN will let Iraq collapse into a pile of extremely ancient ruins. The political equivalent of beginning a round of negotiations by taking hostages.
So much for humanitarian concerns and the UN s much ballyhooed role as the global champion of the oppressed. In truth, it is all about politics, and the UN doesn t give a fig about what happens to the Iraqis. As an organization, it wants power global power and if that means allowing Iraq to implode to get it, then so be it.
Annan learned a lot watching the French maneuver and manipulate events to its advantage. If the French can do it as part of the UN, why can t the UN just cut out the middle man?
Axel Poniatovski, a member of the foreign affairs committee in the French National Assembly, told the BBC that it was “difficult to understand why the US, today, wouldn’t want to be under a UN mandate”.
Why wouldn t the US, today, want to be under a UN mandate? That is a question so profoundly stupid that it could only puzzle a member of the French government.
(I can t resist. Please forgive the spleen-venting, but if I don t, I fear a stress related stroke I ll just lay here on the couch and you take notes and nod infrequently)
Ummm, because the UN doesn t have a clue what it is doing?
The FBI is investigating the United Nations security guards, who were selected by Saddam Hussein s regime before the war. They reported to Iraqi intelligence on the movements of U.N. staff at the Canal Hotel compound, which served as a base for weapons inspectors.
The United Nations continued to employ the guards after the war because they were familiar faces. The UN said it didn t want the US to provide security before the attack because they said they didn t need it.
Who would the UN put in charge of Iraqi internal security? Saddam Hussein? That could be a reason why the US might not want to be under a UN mandate in Iraq? Given UN reluctance to remove him in the first place, who knows?
Could it be because Washington remembers the UN performances in the Balkans? In 1995, Dutch UN peacekeepers stood by and watched as 7000 Muslim men and boys were massacred by Bosnian Serbs in a UN-declared safe area .
A subsequent Dutch parliamentary probe said the UN and its own troops were to blame for failing to prevent Europe s worst single atrocity since World War II.
It concluded, The entire international community was trailing behind events and was insufficiently prepared for the war crimes that were committed by the Bosnian Serbs.
Maybe that s why Washington doesn t want to place itself under the UN s mandate in Iraq. They read the Dutch report of a UN debacle so sweeping that the Dutch parliament couldn t even exonerate its own troops.
The Bosnian Serbs were amateurs compared to the swelling ranks of al-Qaeda terrorists flooding into Iraq. Does anybody really think UN peacekeepers are a match for al-Qaeda terrorists? Anybody? I’ll wait.
Let’s not forget the swell job the UN has done with the Middle East since 1947. Or the UN s successful interventions in Africa? Like when the Cubans were finally driven out of Angola, for example. The same Cuban soldiers showed right back up in Angola months later as part of the UN peacekeeping contingent. Soon there were reports the Cubans were aiding the rebels from within the UN.
The entire population of sub Saharan Africa faces annihilation from AIDS because of the cost of treatment and prevention when they have enough money in the World Bank to lend money to Malaysia to develop its global electronics market. AIDS has been around for two decades and they still can’t figure out how to buy medicine.
(Hint — maybe they could make it themselves. The UN has all the ingredients and even some guys who can read recipes — never occurred to them in 20 years?)
How long will it take for the UN to fix Iraq? Two centuries?
Does anybody ELSE remember Rwanda? The UN stood idly by while one person in seven was slaughtered in an ethnic genocide. The UN let them kill each other until the only ones left were the wounded, the sick and the little kids. Then they set up refugee camps just in time for them to die by the tens of thousands when the UN realized in their yearlong ‘rush’ to rescue the Rwandans they forgot some of their tents and were out of medicine.
The UN was actually only given one really important job to do all by itself, as a sovereign body. That was to enforce the sanctions it imposed on Iraq as a condition of the 1991 Gulf War ceasefire.
How about this for a reason why the US isn’t leaping at the chance to let the UN run things? In Iran, former president and leading cleric Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani gave a sermon on Friday, saying, “If the UN is put in charge, many great countries around the world will help. The Russians will come. The Germans will come. The French will come. The Indians will come. Islamic countries will come. They will try to somehow solve the problem that the Americans have created, the tragedy that they have brought upon our region.”
And that is the whole UN agenda in a nutshell, straight from the mouth of America s most implacable enemy. The Russians will come. The Germans will come. The French will come. Oil executives in tow, with construction contracts already filled out.
Didn t they already come, about twelve years ago, and prop up the world s most despicable dictator in exchange for those same contracts they are trying to get now?
Iran is for it. That s a good reason to be against it.
But there is the other option, one I hope the US would take for the sake of my spleen, but pray it does not for the sake of Iraq.
Let em have it. The whole kit and caboodle. Pull out all our forces. Bring home all our guns. While we re at it we can withdraw our participation in the UN since we don t seem to be welcome there anyway. Tell Israel they are free to handle their own war on terror any way they like, since we are going home.
Then send a note to Osama bin-Laden that Kofi Annan is now in charge of the Iraq occupation and that the best way to get his attention is to bedevil the French, now that Israel has nuked Iran and Syria and we’ve cut off his supply of North Korean nuclear weapons. Not to mention our solving North Korea’s energy problems without UN interference, (now that it glows in the dark all by itself).
And we can sit here at home and watch Allah sort it out on TV.