What Message Would You Deliver at the United Nations General Assembly?

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
September 19, 2008
United Nations General Assembly

The 63rd session of the United Nations General Assembly opened on September 16, 2008. World leaders are preparing to deliver remarks at the United Nations in the coming weeks. You have been given a slot among them to speak at the podium.

What message would you deliver at the United Nations General Assembly?

Comments

Comments

JOE
|
Tennessee, USA
September 20, 2008

Joe in Tennessee writes:

What Chief Joseph stated to his people:

"We shall be one people or we will all perish."

Very simple...

This may seem at odds with my postings; but in essence, it is only related to what the UN represents. It is the table on which the worlds problems are attempted to be resolved and this should be the premise for all decisions made.

Syrian P.
|
Syria
September 21, 2008

SNP in Syria writes:

In these present world crises, humanitarian, financial, economical, ecological, and political, the U.N., its real hidden leadership and its puppets regimes are not the solution to mankind problems, they are the problems.

A New World Order, run by a World Congress, its members elected from the people to safeguard the world's people, nations and tribes is past due and must be established no later than 2017. SNP will be the catalyst and shall lead the way for the establishment of this just and progressive global body that under, every member shall be equal. It is then, when humanity will begin its journey out of the evil past, rules by evil and sinister Ammonite entity and onto the glorious millenniums filled with justice, light, achievements and progress. Man, will no longer live like the beasts as those sinister entities intended and planned for millennia's past, but as humans at par with others in intelligence and advancements and exceeds the evil ones in moral and spiritual capacity.

Zharkov
|
United States
September 22, 2008

Zharkov in U.S.A. writes:

Ladies and Gentlemen:

You have failed to stop a single war anywhere.

You have failed to end a single dictatorship anywhere. Except for your own tax-free salaries, you have failed to end world poverty anywhere.

Except for your own dinner parties, you have failed to end world hunger anywhere.

America is bankrupt; we can't pay for this anymore.

Now go home.

We are done here.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
September 22, 2008

Eric in New Mexico writes:

(as prepared)

Mr. Secretary General, Mr. President, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen: Thank you for the privilege of being here.

As a member of one of America's first nuclear families, these subjects I touch upon are unavoidably personal. My granddad did his job during a time of war and helped end it. Family duty being what it is, I must follow through. Much is at stake.

In my granddad's day, some of his fellow scientists at Los Alamos had a "betting pool" going before the Trinity test as to how large the resulting explosion (in kilotons of TNT) would be. Anyone present here care to guess how many "Los Alamos's" there are today on the planet? How much Gross National Product is invested to create weapons that cannot ever again be used, and remain civilized?

I stress here the biggest "what if?" is what we might have accomplished as the Human species had nations chosen to live in peace, instead of fear of coexistance after WW2.

Anyone here who has witnessed the birth of one's child can say that yes indeed you created your own reality as parents. The question is what do we wish to create for ourselves as reality on this planet, now and for our children's, and their children's future? Not just in my country, but the world as a whole, as an international vision.

Humanity has lived so long with the reality of imminent destruction that we've become numb to it. Shoving it far from concious thought in order to live "normal" lives. But the unconcious and unintended sociological manifestations have been apparent to anyone willing to see the stark truth.

Inherently, change is viewed with suspicion as a threat to culture and ways of tradition and ethical belief systems. As this applies to developing countries in this nuclear age, the post-cold war aftermath presents a vast paradox that present no easy solutions and has culminated in the reality of the war on terrorism as it exists today. The threat of WMD in the hands of state sponsors of terrorism and their extremist cohorts is not one that civilization and rule of law can abide by. Nor can anyone call themselves a responsible nuclear power in the same breath, for the reality in creating potential self extinction of humanity is truly the definition of collective insanity.

When I consider the difference (by definition) between a terrorist and a freedom fighter, The targeting of civilians and the methods employed serve as self evident. The philosophy behind our revolution, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Declaration of Independence, was born from resistance to oppression with "live free, or die." being at the core of it. As Hamid Karzai once suggested, this is the Afghan jihad, the true jihad, to be free to live in correctness with one another. That struggle lies in one's heart, the struggle to live a correct life, in the realm of one's beliefs.

Far braver the man who puts down his weapons to walk a path of peace than the man who clings to them in fear of living in coexistance.

In America we go through a revolution every four years or so around election time or at least an insurrection of sorts. We do this peacefully, and by loyal opposition if so inclined.

So it is with these thoughts put forward, as they may be a radical departure from any resolution put in blue, or any perspective offered before this fora in the past about the nature of the premis for this gathering's existance.

For we are an imperfectly dysfunctional family of nations gathered today seeking group therapy for the good of all humanity. Our collective well being depends on that being a lasting success. Implementing the words, "in larger freedom".

To "protect and serve" humanity and ensure the preservation of all cultures and ways of tradition that an individual or nation has the inalienable right to choose for themselves as they see fit; so long as it harms no other individual's or nation's ability to do so.

With this as our guiding philosophy as policy among nations, the undiscovered country called "world peace" may someday become reality.

Thus I propose a worthy goal to eliminate WMD of all types from the planet by the year 2045, marking 100 years since the first atomic weapon test. A reasonable target date if the will to achieve it exists. For if the will does not exist, neither will civilization. We being only human, and prone to err.

Instead let future historians of the 22nd century call these hundred years as the age of insanity, a brief psycotic break in the whole of human evolution.

Thank you for listening....We the people must ask the hard questions and provide perspective to those with the burden of responsibility for the future of mankind, having a vested interest in being siezed of the matter.

Mine is but one small voice in the global constituancy trying to help others find theirs among the family of nations.

I thank you for this opportunity.

Kirk
|
Kentucky, USA
September 23, 2008

Kirk in Kentucky writes:

Given the opportunity to address the UN I would focus on the need to re-examine the role of the aid culture and the methodology of the UN in performing the hundreds of assistance programs in place now and in the future.

The sovereignty of a nation is only rendered legitimate when it performs the essential functions and services for its citizens. The breakdown of these functions is the principal cause of global conflict and economic disruption. That much is well known, what is less understood is how the presence of the NGOs and UN contractors contribute to or prevent these breakdowns.

The UN must comprehensively re-structure and streamline the process of giving aid, but more importantly, it must increase the transparency and accountability of the pledging nations, programs, its directors, the companies, and NGOs, involved. We must assure that what is reported to the UN and the world is actually happening on the ground.

Here is a telling example: in 2005 USAID officials promised to spend millions of dollars to build 1,100 schools in Afghanistan in 2 years. 3 years later, only 8 schools have been built -- 6 of which have since collapsed. What happened and where did all that money go?

NGOs are a powerful force for delivering aid to countries, but by the same token, without consistent oversight, they also undermine the very institutions they purport to assist. The UN must no longer avoid the issue of corruption and parasitic interests if it truly wishes to build struggling nations into respectable and stable states.

To that end NGOs and government equivalents must be brought to heel and agree to some universal standards. For one, all plans and activities, in detail, must be made public to the citizens of recipient counties. Without public participation and approval, these efforts will not gain much support except by the involved companies making profit. Public awareness is the counter balance to private interests.

Second, while every NGO operates differently, there must be some standardization to the method of procurement and sub-contracting. There are many companies that take a share of aid for doing little more than pushing the work down the line, after taking their 20% management cut. The awesome impact of economic assistance, sometimes in the billions, is whittled away at each step until it is only a pittance by the time it reaches the people in need. The great strokes that could change this world for the better are being rendered ineffective by mis-management and opportunistic agents. This must stop and the heads of every organization must be held accountable, via legal repercussions, for not delivering on their contractual agreements. Any NGO, UN contractor, or government agency that fails to consistently improve the situation of recipient countries due to failures inside their realm of control, as reported by timely in-depth professional evaluations, must be black-listed and prosecuted. We must stamp out corruption and graft at all costs. More effort and resources must be put into oversight and investigation. The results of those findings must be made clear and proclaimed loudly. Increased spending in these areas will actually improve efficiency and cost effectiveness by reducing waste, fraud, and reduplication.

Finally, the UN must examine what the effects of aid rendered has on the recipient countries. Not just the results of said projects, but the impact of UN involvement and NGOs on the governments themselves. Are the people and governments involved in designing and implementing these plans, or are they being implemented unilaterally? Are civil servants being trained and supported, or are they being bleed from their governments? Are agencies working for the country or is the government dancing for aid agencies?

In short, the UN must break with the past and have an evolution of theory and practice that matches today's global paradigm. If we, the nations of the world, insist on aiding our brethren, we must do it right, a happy and safe future depends on it.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
September 23, 2008

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ Kirk,

I have no idea where you get your data from, but facts are facts, and you shouldn't come to the table without them having first been checked out by you personally at the source.

It might save you some intellectual embarassment in the future.

http://www.usaid.gov/locations/asia/countries/afghanistan

In 2002, when schools reopened, 97 percent of girls did not attend school. By the end of Taliban rule, 80 percent of schools were severely damaged or destroyed. To improve the situation, USAID constructed or refurbished over 680 schools and distributed more than 60 million textbooks. USAID created an accelerated learning program that enrolled over 170,000 students, more than half of whom were girls, and provided learning materials. Today, USAID supports more than 45,000 students in community-based education classes in areas where there is no access to formal schools and implements the Ministry of Education?s teacher training program in 11 provinces, supporting more than 50,000 teachers in the formal school system. As a result of the efforts by the Afghan government, the United States, and other donors, today more than 5.7 million students are in school, 35 percent of whom are girls.

----end---

However, I agree with the premis of your thinking on the matter in general. Regardless of the inaccuacy in the example you used, and ommission of the fact that the Taleban have directly targeted schools which have indeed caused a few to collapse.

There will always be room for improvement is my general point, as is your's if I do not miss my guess.

Anna
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 23, 2008

Anna in Washington, DC writes:

I read this week that over 500,000 women die each year in childbirth. In the last 20 years, the ratio of maternal deaths to babies born has barely changed in poorer countries. It reminded me that despite the advances that women have made, there is still much to be done, so I would speak about women's issues. Women's issues are everyone's issues. Mothers, daughters, sisters, wives...we as the world can -- and should -- do better by them.

Kirk
|
Kentucky, USA
September 24, 2008

Kirk in Kentucky writes:

@ Eric in New Mexico

The data I used was provided by Mr. Ashraf Ghani, Finance Minister of Afghanistan, from their book, co-authored by Clare Lockhart, "Fixing Failed States: A Framework For Rebuilding A Fractured World." If you wish to dispute his statement, I'm sure he would be pleased to hear from you.

A Washington Post article details further the successes and failures of these programs.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/11/19/AR200511...

The New York Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/11/07/international/asia/07afghan.html?pagew...

Ann Jones cites similar figures in:
https://lists.resist.ca/pipermail/project-x/2006-August/013644.html

I'd also like to point out that referring to an agency's home page, like the USAID, while uplifting, is not a reliable source of information. They have a vested interest in suppressing reports of mistakes, polishing the mediocre, and promoting their successes, all of which there are plenty. Better sources are investigative agencies, like U.S. Government Accountability Office (U.S. GAO):

http://www.gao.gov/

Lucky P.
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 24, 2008

LP in Washington, DC writes:

I played Woodrow Wilson in Elementry School and established the League of Nations...how ironic...at Francis Scott Key School no less. A man without a country...even more ironic.

It seems the most prolific attainment the UN has is in the Narcotics trade and illegal banking.

Did everyone forget the 1980-1990s investigation which ended there? Makes you wonder why we even try -- but, the Narco dollar was stronger and in reality, what did some of these new democracies have to trade to acquire the means to feed and arm their people.

How about something simple like Joe said...that is what it was all about to begin with, peaceful survival and an end human sufferage.

Directly put: the last paragraph is the most important.
http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/ww38.htm

and Again, Wilsons last paragraph herein:
http://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/ww40.htm

In case your too lazy:

Therefore, we cannot rewrite this treaty. We must take it or leave it, and gentlemen, after all the rest of the world has signed it, will find it very difficult to make any other kind of treaty. As I took the liberty of saying the other night, it is a case of "put up or shut up." The world cannot breathe in the atmosphere of negotiations. The world cannot deal with nations who say, "We won't play!" The world cannot have anything to do with an arrangement in which every nation says, "We will take care of ourselves."

Quote: We shall be one people or we will all perish.

Seems Chief Joseph knew it long ago...

john
|
California, USA
September 25, 2008

John in California writes:

I love this blog. Keep up the good work.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
September 24, 2008

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ Kirk, FYI...links to NYT and WP articles good but way out of date (2005).

Ann Jones link produced site re-direct warnings from my box that site authenticity could not be verified. Better check it.

Given some of the known past corruption within the Afghan gov. including its finance ministry, and Karzai's struggle to clean up the minstries and hold higher standards of accountability it is also logical that some in Afghanistan will seek to blame those failures on the US.

I will accept USAID figures over that, and out of date media reports are just that, out of date, thus innacurate in 2008.

And if USAID put figures out on their website that wasn't cross checked with NGO's, interagency reports, and field reports from PRT's among others independant of any political office, I'd be very suprised.

Besides, State would have heard about it from a whole lot of folks including GAO long before now and corrected USAID on any inaccuracies.

As I said the premis of your statement was sound. For a reason, but not the reason by example you cited.

You say there was a lot done right and I agree, and it made me wonder at the lack of reporting on things done right by both NYT and WP over many years and in other context as well such as Iraq.

If I remember correctly, these same media outlets were filled with op-eds of "quagmire" in Afghanistan not two weeks in process of removing the Taleban, which was poor reporting at best, and politicly motivated at worst.

So if it's a matter of sourcing which often is the case, I know which sources to trust and the ones that may occasionally get the story right, but often don't.

Sarmoye B.
|
Mali
September 24, 2008

Sarmoye in Mali writes:

1. UN must know that the development of Africa is not possible with the only opinion of political leaders. African peoples ignore how and when development policies are decided. Developed Countries which help Africa are verry blind if they think that a president who comes whith violence, killing and destroying can be think about anything without how to keep the power all his life.

2 . SOS. Terrorism and drug are veritable dangers in west africa. Our countries have not means to fight lonely against it. We are in the level of Afganistan in 1999.

joe
|
Tennessee, USA
September 24, 2008

Joe in Tennessee writes:

Bush did a good job yesterday in maintaining the importance of the threat of terrorism we all still face. It is devastating to any development all over the globe. It is a reality we must face and not look the other way because we are tired of it. It is to this day the single most effective method used to disengage development. You cannot get food to the people you try to help, you cannot educate, provide health care, create a secure foundation for anything with this situation continuing.

They are delighting various forms of dictatorships through fear and not even creating socialistic development for the people behind the rouse of false religious beliefs or social change which they never bring.

Even in South America, they have amassed enough monies via narcotics, they can have a say in the governments there in a productive manner, yet chose not to. They have the abililty to legitimize their funds and create jobs, yet do not. This fact applies to Afghanistan, the Philippines, etc. They do not because they evoke chaos, and chaos is EVIL. Do not think otherwise.

Shame Bush seems to be the only one who sees it for what it is...His Father did as well.

John
|
Greece
September 25, 2008

John in Greece writes:

"Ecology" is a great issue now days. "Think Green", "Think of the Planet" etc. However, how "Dip" this "Green" can be in a real life "scale of colours"?

According to my opinion, G.W. Bush kept a very close and prudent policy concerning the Eco issues. He took Eco issues very seriously. Nevertheless, all these 8 years, he faced very strong criticism, concerning his "environmental" choices, although I think that he never put in danger the sensitive fraction: Eco-conscience/real life of today.

I'll be honest with you. I had a little debate with a friend of mine, who is an "ecologist" (allow me the term). After this little discussion, I had even more objections concerning the exact point, where "today's socio-economic necessities" give an inch to Eco, and where "Eco" may claim a "dangerous" mile of these necessities.

In other words,
Where Eco begins, but also, how far can it go, without disturbing or destroy today's socio-economic life...

It's easy to be a fun of the so-called "eco-revolution", but isn't it a little bit utopian, when it becomes the only scope of someone's thinking about today's life?

Where are the boundaries of a logic approach to this issue?

Anna
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 26, 2008

Anna in Washington, DC writes:

@ Sarmoye in Mali --

Years ago I was shocked to learn about the violence in Sierra Leone and Liberia, but I thought things were getting better. I did not know how dire the situtation is in West Africa, that it could be compared to Afghanistan in 1999. That is terrifying.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
September 26, 2008

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Ah, the economics of ecological stewardship...good subject John.

Don't know about Greece, but I would guess you have more sunny days than not in the Med.

About 300 sunny days out of the year here in New Mexico.

Imagine that the Greek government offered grants to home owners to install solar panels on your house w/ 12 volt deep cycle marine batteries and a voltage converter clean enough to power your computer and all your electrical needs of the home at your normal wall outlet current.

You are still connected to the electric grid if your three day battery storage capacity is insufficiant, and when you have more capacity to generate power than you can store, your house actually feeds power to the electric grid and the utility company pays you for it. Juice up your electric car, heat your hot water,...free, or at profit.

Imagine every home and buisiness in Greece converted to solar power. Greece would have more electricity than it knew what to do with.

It is not the future technology....We have it now.

Folks just have to get busy and get it happening on a mass scale to make a significant difference.

A lot has been said for nuclear power as a solution, but inherently waste management is a long term health and safety issue. Until that is resolved either through vitrification processes to make nuclear waste envioronmentally inert and then placed in underground storage facilities that need to be monitored and maintained for thousands of years till the waste's not immenently deadly to anything exposed to it if some future generation 10,000 years from now dug it up by mistake, you have a basic problem with nuclear power as a viable solution in general.

Not to mention that to fly a plane into a reactor would be a wish fulfillment dream to a terrorist.

It is a fact of life that nuclear power will be around for awhile. But it caries inherent environmental risks that are potentially devestating, and have been on occasion.

The US hasn't built a new commercial nuclear power plant in over 30 years for a reason.

Wind power is another option that's less geographicly sensitive than solar, and in less sunny climates a combination might prove more effective.

My basic point is that you don't just want to diversify energy sourcing by type of supply, you want to diversify cost effective energy production at the user end of the power grid to be non dependant upon a central power source that can be taken out of commission in natural disaster or by terrorist act.

Then you have true energy security.

Babar
|
Pakistan
September 26, 2008

Babar in Pakistan writes:

Greeting!

In the view of present situation here in Pakistan, no matter how much help and aid Pakistan gets from US, the negative views and attitude of the people towards US is not changing, the reason is not just one but unfortunately one of the main reason which I think your government also knows is that most of the aid and help from US doesn't reach to the people of Pakistan. Funds go in the pocket of corrupt government officials and so called non governmental organizations (NGOs). To gain the support of Pakistani people, to win their hearts and minds US government has to change its strategy, US government has to work from base, they have to have direct contact with people of Pakistan, How can they do it? I don't think it's much difficult; first of all they have to stop trusting local officials regardless they are in government or working for NGOs, because they cheat and do not use the funds for right purpose and then they make false reports and present false evidence of using the US funds to the Funding authorities.

US government must open schools in Pakistan but they must be administered directly by US officials. This is the key in success, key for the better future of the world. When children will get better opportunities to go to American Schools, they will prefer this instead of going to so called Madarasas and learning hatred. Poverty, lack of better education is helping those who are using young generation of Pakistan for their own purpose. Here in Pakistan I met few Americans who are based here to work and to help people directly, they are supervising the development work, small projects themselves. I want US government to encourage more people from US NGOs and people to come to Pakistan and work in the field of education and health and Unfortunately because of bad leadership and corrupt system we cant do it ourselves, US government and NGOs much supervise every work directly, I believe this can bring good results and can help US government to win the heart and mind of Pakistani people, this will be your great help towards achieving the peace in our region. I wish, I could do something towards world peace. I hope my words will reach to US officials with good faith and better understanding.

God Bless.

Molly
|
District Of Columbia, USA
September 26, 2008

Molly in Washington, DC writes:

I agree with Joe in Greece, friends. If we don't address the environmental issues facing our planet, than all others will pale in comparison. No amount of wealth will be able to insulate us when we start running out of drinking water, fertile soil, clean air. We need to take action now.

.

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