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Decision time for U.S. - U.N. relations

By Henry Lamb
web posted June 20, 2005

The United States is approaching the moment of decision in its relationship with the United Nations. Whether the bloated, corrupt world body fades, as did the League of Nations, or emerges as the supreme government of the world, is in the hands of the United States Congress.

The U.N.'s oil-for-food scandal continues to boil, while U.N. peacekeepers' sexcapades exploit victims of civil strife in Africa. Most of the 190 member nations of the U.N. are aligned against U.S. policy - whatever that policy may be - and demand that the U.S. provide "new and additional" funding for a never-ending string of U.N. programs.

The U.N. is teetering on the brink of extinction. The only hope it has of survival - without U.S. financial support - is to acquire the authority to tax. The United States has blocked dozens of U.N. tax proposals in recent years. But pressure is building, again, to grant taxing authority to the U.N.

At the recent G8 summit of Finance Ministers, France and Germany proposed a global tax on airline tickets. Hans Eichel, Germany's finance minister stated, "No one in the G8 [including the U.S.] has said anything against it. It's now on the agenda" [for the G8 heads of state who meet in Scotland in July].

In an effort to block the U.N. tax possibility, Congressman Ron Paul successfully added an amendment to an appropriation bill that prohibits any appropriation from being used to "...develop, publicize, implement or impose any U.N. tax or fee on any U.S. citizen."

With the European Union's constitution faltering, the U.N. is the only hope France, Germany and Russia have to constrain the United States. They will push to get this taxing authority for the U.N. If the U.N. ever gets an independent source of revenue, there will be no way to stop the institution from becoming the world government its supporters want.

Congress, and the American people, realize that the U.N. cannot continue as it has operated in the past. The question is what to do about it. The House of Representatives seems to be coalescing around the idea that the U.N. can be reformed, and has specified 39 specific actions that the U.N. should take, or risk losing 50% of U.S. financial support.

The U.N. is beyond reform. It has clearly demonstrated that its ultimate goal is to become the supreme government authority in the world. Since the publication of Our Global Neighborhood, by the Commission on Global Governance, every action by the U.N. has been an implementation of the recommendations of the commission.

The U.N. reforms now proposed by Kofi Annan's reform committee are based on the commission's recommendations. Among them is the proposal to expand the U.N. Security Council by adding more permanent members and increasing the number of rotating members. Taxing authority is also a recommendation of the commission. The creation of a U.N. standing army is another.

Sadly, the reform measures contained in the House U.N. reform bill calls for the creation of a "Peacebuilding Commission" which could well be the precursor of the U.N. standing army.

The United States has two options: force the very reforms recommended by the Commission on Global Governance - and hasten the creation of a world government, or, withdraw from the U.N. altogether - and save the world from a central global government that must inevitably fail.

The world government defined in Our Global Neighborhood - as well as the U.N. institution as it now exists - operates on the premise that government is the supreme power that grants or denies freedom to its people.

The U.S. Declaration of Independence, and the government it produced, demonstrate that a far better premise is that people are the supreme power - who grant or deny power to their government.

This idea is beyond the comprehension of most of the people in the world, including many people in the U.S., and, unfortunately, too many people in Congress. If the U.S. chooses the option to reform the U.N., it is simply strengthening the institution, and endorsing its quest to become a world government.

If, on the other hand, the U.S. should choose to withdraw from the U.N. by enacting Ron Paul's American Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2005 (HR1146), world government can be averted. This option would free the U.S. from many entangling obligations. It would allow the U.S. to affirm its founding principles and explore international relations with sovereign nations without regard to an overarching U.N. authority.

The best, if not the only hope of retaining freedom in America, and expanding freedom in the world in the 21st century is to abandon the failed U.N. institution, and exercise the principles of freedom that have served America so well.

Henry Lamb is the executive vice president of the Environmental Conservation Organization (ECO), and chairman of Sovereignty International.


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