NATO: Beyond Collective Defense Part III
New Rules for a New World
By Steve Farrell
Alexander Hamilton observed: "It ...seems to have been reserved to the people of this country...to decide the important question, whether societies of men are really capable or not of establishing good government from reflection and choice, or whether they are forever destined to depend for their political constitutions on accident and force."
Indeed, the successful rise of these United States as an Independent nation, capstoned with its inspired Constitution, was a pivotal moment in history which displayed before the world an unmatched era of liberty - an era in which common men did uncommon things, where religious liberty and other inalienable rights became the weightier matters of the law, where laissez faire sent standards of living (for both rich and poor) spiraling upward, and where the right to vote meant that taxes, laws, and wars would be levied or executed only by the consent of the governed. Finally man was set free to charter his personal destiny.
Collectively, it meant another thing: We "assumed among the Powers of the Earth," wrote Jefferson, "the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God [entitled us]."
We became a sovereign nation.
As a sovereign, our national course, like our individual course, became ours to set. Our independence, in this regard, was sacred. This was so, because the state was nothing more than the collective manifestation of the individual right to life, liberty, and property. The state's power was delegated; sovereignty resided in the people, and the state's job was to protect that sovereignty - or in other words protect our rights.
With this in mind, in international affairs, a premium was attached to prohibiting any tampering, or even of setting up relationships and organizations which might by their nature tempt tampering with sovereign rights.
Neutrality was the answer. That is, friendly and commercial relations with all, entangling political, economic, or military alliances with none.
Even common non entangling treaties which established and recognized foreign embassies, general trade rules, clarification of fishingrights, and mutual extradition policies, demanded defined limits.
What limits? Alexander Hamilton in Federalist 33, explained: Any treaties "not pursuant to the Constitution," are "merely acts of usurpation," and "not the supreme law of the land."
Sovereignty, then, was sacred and guarded via political and economical neutrality (not isolationism - which never existed in this melting pot nation whose doors have ever been open to the world) But it didn't stop there. In regards to other peoples sovereignty, the founders feelings were the same.
Founder Thomas Paine explained in Common Sense: "Our Independence with God's blessing we will maintain against all the world; but as we wish to avoid evil ourselves, we [must not] inflict it on others."
Offensive war, even in the name of liberty, was morally "murder" and politically "tyranny."
Who but a "ruffian," he asked, would - like the old world state run religions "force" men to be free and thus moral? These were inseparable principles, both dependent upon inner conviction, intelligence, wisdom, and self restraint. No one could justly and successfully impose these upon human beings.
That is until now, because now the rules have changed.
New Rules For A New World
During NATO's 50th Anniversary celebration, in a speech which can only be defined as NATO's Manifesto for the 21st Century, British Prime Minister Tony Blair, in consultation with U.S. President Bill Clinton, laid down what he described as "new rules" for a "new world."
This was important, for the old rules, he admitted, rejected NATO's offensive war against Sovereign Yugoslavia.
The old rules which Mr. Blair in consultation with Mr. Clinton, said NATO now rejects are:
1. We must reject Laissez-faire. This he said was "at the top...of a new economic role for Government. We don't believe in laissez-faire (free enterprise)."
2. We must reject Isolationism. "We are all internationalists now," he said. "We live in a world where isolationism has ceased to have a reason to exist...The United States and others [have] finally realized standing aside [is] not an option."
3. We must reject the old notion that defensive wars are the only just wars. "This is a just war, [because it is] based not on any territorial ambitions but on values"
4. "The principle of non-interference [in the internal affairs of nations] must be qualified in important respects. " From this moment forward, there are number of things, which can "never" be regarded "as purely internal matters," but rather "threats to international security:" Some of them are: Conflicts, acts of genocide, expulsion of ethnic [groups], minority rule, human rights violations, environmental problems, disarmament issues, financial instability in Asia, poverty in the Caribbean, and economic woes in Russia..
And for Kosovo, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, and Serbia - if they turn democratic: "We will need a new Marshall plan (See NATO part II)."
5. We must reexamine the legitimacy of sovereignty: It is time for nations to accept "the judgements of international organizations even when you do not like them."
Five old rules, then, that NATO rejects: Laissez-faire, isolationism, limiting NATO to defensive war, non-interference into internal affairs, and sovereignty.
Which doesn't speak well as an introduction as to what NATO's new rules might be.
He mentioned a few: A new push to implement "free trade" under the ponderous WTO - a paradox.. The obligation of NATO members to implement the Kyoto protocol (the global warming treaty.) And the need to utilize the war crimes tribunal against Serbia - (who we should add hunts down Nazi's and Pinochets, but ignores Soviet and Chinese communists. Call it NATO's version of equality before the law.
But the key, to really understanding what Mr. Blair means by New Rules, requires a glance at the UN Charter. Blair confessed: "If we want a world ruled by law and by international co-operation then we have to support the UN as its central pillar." Which is our last stop in this discussion.
U.N. Charter - Against Liberty
First of all, Blair's point of reference is accurate as defined by the North Atlantic Treaty. The treaty legally requires NATO to "refrain" from acting "in any manner inconsistent with the purposes of the United Nations." and in general, commits the "parties to this treaty," to "[affirm] their faith in the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations."
What are those purposes and principles?
A brief side by side comparison with a few American principles of liberty is revealing.
1. Representative Government. Representation to Americans means the right of adults to elect those who serve us in government. Of all the irritations which led to the American Revolution, the King of England's insistence that America be represented by those he appointed, rather than those whom the colonists elected, was the greatest. Thus at every level - local, state, and national - we vote.
By Contrast, the United Nations Organization, while claiming to be acting in the interest of democracy, has not one official elected by the people, in all of its myriad's of posts.
Even worse, members of the General Assembly possess absolutely no power to make laws. They may only "consider...discuss...advise...or make suggestions to the Security Council. (See Articles 10, 11, 13, 14, 15, and 18.) Further, article 12 even prohibits unsolicited recommendations from the General Assembly "while the Security Council is exercising in respect of any dispute or situation the functions assigned to it."
The only true power which belongs to the General Assembly is it power to approve the budget. But then it's easy enough to say yes, when (a.) the U.S. subsidizes 40 percent of it, (b) you are not accountable to their people, and (c) Article 25 mandates all members of the General Assembly "accept and carry out the decisions of the Security Council."
Yes, the 185 nations of the United Nations General Assembly, are not elected by their people, have no voting power to make laws, declare war, etc, but they are required to "accept and carry out the decisions of the 11 members of the Security Council." Thus all power resides, most especially, in the United States, Russia, China, France, and Great Britain - who are the only permanent members of the Security Council, and who each holds the power of an absolute veto.
2. Separation of Powers. James Madison, father of the Constitution defined tyranny as the "concentration of all powers judicial, legislative, and executive, in one body." Our Constitution, therefore, separated the three functions, established checks, balances, and specific limitations on their powers, and even divided the legislative body into two Houses - one representing the people and the other the states.
Forget that at the UN. The General Assembly (article 25), the World Court via the absolute veto (article 27), the armed services (articles 39-51), and all regional arrangements (articles 52-54), are subject to, controlled, and regulated by the 11 members of the Security Council. If this is not tyranny, than what is?
3. Human Rights. Several books could be written on the radical U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, all the addendum's that followed, its new Children's Bill of Rights - and all the dangers they pose. But a brief comparison of the two most fundamental differences will have to suffice.
The American Declaration of Independence reads: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights." That is rights come from God not government.
"To secure these rights, government are instituted among men. That whenever any government become destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it." That is governments do not possess the power to abridge rights, but only to protect them.
Consistent with these two principles, the American Bill of rights does not grant rights but rather prohibits the federal government from making laws which might deny those rights.
The U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights is on the opposite end of the political spectrum on this issue too.
Reference to God is never given.
Laws can be made to circumvent rights. Article 29, verse 2 reads: "In the exercise of his rights and freedoms, everyone shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law" The very same stipulation was in the Soviet Constitution and is in the "new" Russian Constitution.
And the clincher - verse 3: "These rights and freedoms may in no case be exercised contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations."
There go your rights.
In fact, "there go your rights" is the absolute best summary of what the United Nations and its regional arrangement NATO, ultimately will accomplish for the world, if we do not soon withdraw from them.
They represent an internationalist philosophy which claims to be in favor of "strengthening democratic institutions," yet despises laissez-fair, neutrality, national sovereignty, democratic and republican principles, and God given rights.
It makes sense then, that NATO deems it just to invade a sovereign nation, destroy its economic capacity, drive hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children into the wilderness to starve, blames it all on somebody else, and plans to, after the war is over, set up shop with a permanent standing army, imposing peace and "democracy," while sticking the United States taxpayers with the bill. Yes, for a war they were never permitted to declare or deny, through their representatives in Congress.
It all makes sense, for it all fits into the new rules for a new world. A set of rules you and I could do without.
Coming soon: NATO Beyond Collective Defense Part IV: Alliance and the Need for Enemies
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