The Un and Its Future

The Un and Its Future

The Un and Its Future

The Un and Its Future

Excerpt

"We have come well past the time when the debate about the UN is a matter of 'for or against.' While there will always be thoughtful and responsible officials, scholars and citizens who are critical of various UN actions and procedures, and of various United States uses of the UN, I know of no responsible leaders either in or out of office, against active participation in the UN.

"There are more shades of opinion about the UN in the United States today than there are in any rainbow, but the differences properly concern not the now-dated question of 'whether' we should support and use the UN but the more subtle and difficult questions of 'how' and 'when' and 'how much.'"

In these words, Adlai E. Stevenson, the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, sets out the philosophy behind this book. The United Nations is here to stay. It has suffered from difficult problems in the past, it faces critical difficulties at present, and its future growth will raise new and contentious issues. However, the United Nations will survive because as President Kennedy has said: If the United Nations did not exist we would have to invent it.

Those who doubt this statement should examine the evidence. It lies within the power of any large nation to damage severely the effectiveness of the United Nations: at certain critical moments any large country has the power to destroy the organization. One of these moments occurred after the death of Dag Hammarskjold. The Russians insisted upon the installation of a troika--three secretaries general, one representing the West, one the East, and one the neutrals. The West opposed this approach. For a time a complete deadlock prevailed and it looked as though the United Nations would remain without a head. Although no country was forced to yield, a compromise was reached which preserved the ability of the UN to operate.

In a world where the survival of all countries is increasingly linked, there must be an organization which allows global debate. Such an organization is necessary both to help prevent the outbreak of large-scale conflict and to mediate smaller-scale conflicts. It is also vital in less dramatic areas, carrying out a wide . . .

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