1 July 1995

On the United Nations Association

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In the summer of 1995, I was irritated by a dismissal of the UN made by Ann Applebaum in the Daily Telegraph. Against this tendency to see the UN only as a corrupt and incompetent bureaucracy, I wrote this article about the United Nations Association, a voluntary organisation and some of its elderly advocates. Published in the Guardian, 1 July 1995

THE United Nations is not in good shape. Great hopes were entertained when the Berlin wall came down in 1989, but these have given way to global half-heartedness, evident in the caveats hedging tributes paid this week in San Francisco, where the UN Charter was signed 50 years ago.

The genocide in Rwanda contributed to this disillusionment – as did the impotent UNPROFOR tanks of Sarajevo, already called beached white whales several years before the Bosnian Serbs purloined some, thereby completing the humiliation. From Angola to Chechenia, the news mocks the UN’s pastoral symbolism of white doves crowding the sky…
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This entry was posted on Saturday, July 1st, 1995 at 5:00 pm and is filed under Articles General, Enthusiasms, War & peace. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.