Hope for UN reform?


The Times of London casts doubt on the ability of John Bolton or anyone else being able to reform the UN, without a threat by Congress to withold funding, and introduces an interesting new book. Gotta love that title.

Pedro Sanjuan, a former political affairs director, argues in his book The UN Gang that America needs to get tough with 'the crooks, the hardened criminals, the spies, the terrorist sympathisers, the nepotists and the racists at the UN [who] don't like to be interfered with'.

Sanjuan warned last week that even John Bolton, the controversial new US ambassador, would find it hard to push through reforms without heavyweight political support from the White House and the US Congress....

Sanjuan warned that US and other member states were virtually impotent when it came to checking up on activities in the secretariat. 'Can a member state — the US, for example — ask to see the UN's books, if any books are kept at all? The answer is a very diplomatically worded 'no'.'

Sanjuan argued that the US Congress should threaten to withhold funds from the UN if it fails to clean up its act.

'The overriding issue now is that the congenitally corrupted secretariat has acquired a new significance,' he said. Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, 'the UN is now a much bigger deal than the silly kindergarten sandbox arena that it amounted to before the 1990s'.

Hat tip:  Jim Lewis