THE UNITED NATIONS
THE failure of the League of Nations to avert a second world war did not destroy the conviction, shared by many, that only by some form of general organisation of States could a system of collective security be achieved which would protect the international community from the scourge of war. The Allies were, even in 1941, calling themselves "The United Nations" and by 1943 the Moscow declaration had recognised "the necessity of establishing at the earliest practicable date a general international organisation, based upon the principle of sovereign equality of all peace-loving States, large and small, for the maintenance of international peace and security". The formulation of definite plans for such an organisation took shape in stages, at Teheran in 1943, at Dumbarton Oaks in 1944, at Yalta in 1945 and, finally, at the San Francisco Conference in 1945 where fifty governments, upon the basis of the Dumbarton Oaks proposals prepared by the four sponsoring States, together drafted the United Nations Charter.
The Charter is, of course, a multilateral treaty establishing or restating the rights and duties of the signatory States; it is not, however, subject to reservation or denunciation, although, despite the absence of a "withdrawal" clause, it may be assumed that legally a State can withdraw subject to its fulfilment of any outstanding obligations, such as its budgetary commitments.1 A withdrawal could, however, be politically more difficult than in the case of the League and it is probably true that exclusion from the United Nations is politically disadvantageous; this is symptomatic of the relatively more important role which the UN plays in international relations than did the League. If this be true, then the suspension of the rights and privileges of a State against which the Security Council takes preventive or enforcement action (Art. 5), or expulsion for persistent violation of the Charter principles (Art. 6), can be very real sanctions.
The Charter is also the basic constitutional document of the Organisation and, as such, it has an inherently dynamic character (which can be seen in the various constitutional developments since 1945) quite unlike the normal multilateral treaty.____________________