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Another U.N. Failure

In my post on Iran yesterday I forgot to mention the rather stunning news that despite the fact Iran is under the threat of sanctions by the UN Security Council for refusing to cooperate on its nuclear program, last week it was elected to a vice-chair position on the U.N. Disarmament Commission. Michael Barone notes an additional touch of irony in the press release. Senator Bill Frist, who has been a leader in pushing for serious reform of the UN Human Rights Commission, writes on his VOLPAC blog that this should be the last straw:

The United Nations needs far-reaching reform and it needs it now. The Bush Administration has pushed for reform, but it has fallen on deaf years in New York. Too many countries like things the way they are: fat salaries for large staffs; little or no oversight of UN activities and programs; a complicated and opaque bureaucracy that prevents accountability; committee memberships that allow countries to block criticism of their own actions; indecision or consensus-based measures that amount to little; and so on.

Worse yet, the United States pays the largest share of UN dues (22%), followed by a handful of other industrialized democracies that all together provide the bulk of the UN's funding. Meanwhile, US proposals are routinely blocked by those opposed to who or what America stands for, while a host of corrupt or rogue regimes use the UN as a forum to advance their own nefarious interests---underwritten by US taxpayers no less.

One step in the right direction would be to deprive the soon-to-be-formed United Nations Human Rights Council of any American support. Despite superficial "reforms," this new body is all too susceptible to being compromised by the world's worst offenders of human rights. The U.S. has rightly decided - at my urging - not to participate in this body. Now the United States should refuse to provide it any funding.

We should adopt the same approach to the UN Disarmament Commission.

The U.N. seems oblivious to the fact that it continues to shred its credibility (what's left of it, anyway) with such behavior.