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Archive for "May 10 2008"

Make this a Mission*

Kick Burma Out of the U.N. –

It’s time to kick Burma out of the United Nations. If the U.N. does not put in motion a process to suspend Burma from its U.N. membership, then, clearly, nothing is forbidden.

Chapter II of the U.N. charter provides for the suspension or expulsion of member states by the Security Council, which can also restore membership. We leave it to the lawyers to find words suitable for such a motion. Maybe there’s something somewhere in the U.N.’s Declaration of Human Rights, which celebrates its 60th tattered anniversary this year.

Some will say that China, the junta’s friend, almost surely would veto any such motion. Then let it do so, on the eve of its torch-besieged Summer Olympics.

Some will say if Burma, then why not Sudan? Good question.

The person to press this point is John McCain, who has suggested creating a league of genuine democratic states willing to act when the U.N.’s “universal” membership fails.

Booting Burma out of the U.N. would be symbolic. But a whole world watching Burma’s generals let their people die of hunger and disease is symbolic of something worse. If the U.N. can do nothing about Burma, it should at least do something about its own self-respect.

(*= get it?)

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