Magazine article New Internationalist

From This Month's Editor

Magazine article New Internationalist

From This Month's Editor

Article excerpt

THIS edition of the NI was completed just two days before disaster overwhelmed so many people living on the rim of the Indian Ocean. There can be few people anywhere in the world who have not also been struck by the shockwaves of a 'natural' and seemingly meaningless tragedy.

All the same, the instant of the tsunami revealed a great deal. Our national governments were, for the most part, exposed as instinctively myopic, parsimonious and tardy. Common humanity was quicker to respond, more naturally cosmopolitan, generous and active. The United Nations exists to embody the latter - but is subservient to the former. If a tsunami can at least shock us into relocating the UN nearer to the world's people, its effect will not have been entirely destructive. And if the remaining content of this magazine about the UN - which of necessity we have left largely unaltered - contributes to such a move then it will have served a constructive purpose. …

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