Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Dear Kofi, by Mike Whitney

To the Office of the Secretary General of the United Nations; Kofi Annan 08/01/06

Dear Secretary General,

I am writing to ask you to take swift action to address the threat of escalating violence in the Middle East. Yesterday, Israel’s Security Cabinet approved “an expansion of the ground campaign in Lebanon” removing any chance of a quick end to the present hostilities. The news was compounded by report in “The Jerusalem Post” which said that the Bush administration is asking Israel “to attack Syria”. This creates the strong probability that what was once a “border skirmish” could very well balloon into a region-wide conflagration. As Secretary-General it is your responsibility to discourage further aggression by persuading the other member states to call for an immediate cease-fire. Unfortunately, your attempts in this regard have been frustrated by the Bush administration's maneuvering and obstructionism.

In the last few days, 15 foreign ministers met in Rome to prepare a statement calling for an immediate cease-fire. As you know, all of the countries supported the motion except for the United States which blocked the measure to give Israel more time to carry out its vicious air-campaign. I think you'll agree that the UN cannot survive if one of its members on the Security Council supports the idea of unilateral warfare.

The obstructionism of the US in the last week has been nothing short of extraordinary. Condoleezza Rice has devoted all her energy to torpedoing the peace initiative, while US Ambassador, John Bolton has effectively impeded every attempt to condemn Israel’s decimation of Lebanon’s civilian infrastructure. The administration’s diplomatic strategy is a carefully-calculated plan to use the United Nations as cover for Israel’s brutal onslaught. In fact, just hours after Condi Rice blocked the Rome initiative, Israeli Justice Minister, Haim Ramon, boasted to the press that Israel had been given “international authorization” to continue its attacks “until Hezbollah is no longer present in southern Lebanon.”

No such “authorization” was ever given. Ramon distorted the statement to justify his belief that “everyone in southern Lebanon is a terrorist” and to continue Israel’s gratuitous assault on Lebanon. He was clearly acting in concert with Bolton and Rice.

The United States cannot be allowed to thwart the will of the majority. That would mean certain death for countless thousands of innocent civilians in the Middle East.

Will you be a part of this charade or will you take steps to avert the impending catastrophe? It is very likely that the hostilities in Lebanon will quickly spread to Damascus and Tehran unless something is done now. It’s up to you to use whatever power you have to prevent this tragedy from unfolding.

The United Nations is not expected to provide soldiers or weaponry to stop US/Israeli aggression. That would be impossible. It can, however, discourage aggression by using its “moral authority” to isolate and condemn the guilty states. We must realize, however, that preserving the peace is impossible if one of the offending nations has a place on the Security Council and can veto any resolution that is not in its interest. That is why drastic measures are needed to deal effectively with this dire situation. Here’s what you must do:

You must convene an emergency meeting of the General Assembly to decide whether the United States should be immediately removed from the Security Council. I think you will find that there is broad international support for this proposal. Once the matter is resolved then the US and Israel will be forced to prosecute their conflicts without the mask of international legitimacy. As you know, the United States depends quite heavily on the UN to conceal its meddling in the developing world. Even now, the Bush administration is trying to gain access Sudan’s oil and natural gas reserves by insisting that troops be deployed to the region for "humanitarian" reasons. This is just another cynical scheme to intrude militarily wherever there are vital resources.

The administration has decided that it will run the world directly from Washington; transforming the UN into a “cats-paw” for America’s geopolitical ambitions. In fact, John Bolton’s package of “Reforms” has been nothing more than a blueprint for turning the UN into a fully-owned franchise of the multinational corporations, the international banking establishment and Israel.

This must be stopped.

It is up to you, Mr. Secretary, to put an end to this farce and restore the credibility of the institution. Prove to the world that the medic at the Qana massacre was wrong when he said that the UN was nothing more than a “gravedigger”.

The United Nations needs to sever the cord that keeps the United States and Israel within the body of nations. Let them wander through the dessert of isolation for a decade or so while their fortunes change and their power dissipates. Eventually, they will return to the family of civilized countries eager to face our collective problems together with humility and greater regard for the lives of others.


Mike Whitney

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