Sep 23, 2002
Iraq, says Bush, is thumbing its nose at U.N. resolutions, defying what the country was supposed to do since the Gulf War. And, if Iraq doesn't straighten out – and the U.N. too – Bush says the U.S. will go it alone.
Someone, some country, some rulers, have been thumbing their nose at U.N. resolutions, it's certainly true. But those someones have been this administration and previous U.S. administrations.
In addition to not paying its full dues to the United Nations, the U.S. government has refused to sign major treaties over dozens of years. The U.S. refused to sign the "Biological and Toxic Weapons Convention" last year. It refused to be part of the "Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty" from 1997 on. In 2001, the U.S. refused to agree what was called the Kyoto Accord, a treaty the rest of the world agreed to on improving climate by cutting emissions of air pollution.
Furthermore, the United States demands exemption from the International Criminal Court. It refused to join in the international ban on the use of land mines. And the U.S. remains in violation of the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty. It also recently refused to sign the U.N. resolution on the rights of women.
It's certainly true that when the U.S. government doesn't like what the world community proposes, it goes its own way – not to mention taking action on its own. There is the no-fly zone imposed by the U.S. over Iraq, of course. Then there is the embargo against Cuba for 40 years. There was the mining of the Managua harbor in Nicaragua when a government came to power that the U.S. didn't support.
And so forth. Finally, in his latest speech, President Bush spelled out U.S. foreign policy so every country on earth could understand. "The president has no intention of allowing any foreign power to catch up with the huge lead the U.S. has opened since the fall of the Soviet Union ..." The Bush administration could not make it more clear: the world's biggest bully has plans to flatten any of the world's smaller bullies it feels like smashing. That's why the U.N. usually ends up slinking behind the U.S. when the U.S. demands it.