Kofi Annan: the rotten UN personified 4

Kofi Annan, Secretary General of the United Nations from January 1997 to December 2006, died on August 18, 2018.

A wicked man who did much harm and allowed extreme harm to be done to millions, he was rewarded for his wickedness with a Nobel Peace Prize.

We see Kofi Annan as a personification of the evil organization he headed. 

Daniel Greenfield writes at Front Page:

When conservatives die, their media obituaries always mention their “controversial” or “complex” histories. But lefty orbits are just hagiographies.

Now that Kofi Annan, the corrupt patron saint of the pro-Saddam left, has died, the media is filled with hagiographies of possibly one of the worst UN bosses of all time. (And that is really saying something.)

Typical of the bunch, “Kofi Annan: a kind statesman and a gifted diplomat” – the Guardian.

How bad was Annan? … Let’s talk about Rwanda.

(From the Independent, May 4, 1998:)

KOFI ANNAN, the Secretary General of the United Nations, knew weeks in advance about plans for the genocide of the minority Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994 but told UN military personnel in the country not to take any action, according to a report to be published here today.

The article, in the New Yorker, alleges that the head of the UN forces in Rwanda, General Romeo Dallaire, sent a message to the office of Mr Annan, then in charge of UN peacekeeping operations, on 11 January 1994 warning of the impending massacre. The General cited a Rwandan security official saying he had been ordered to prepare for the “extermination” of the Tutsis.

The genocide campaign, which left at least 500,000 Tutsis dead in Rwanda, began on 6 April 1994 and lasted for three months, uninterrupted by outside intervention.

Some sources estimate that about one million Tutsis were killed, and some 2,000,000 displaced.

There was no reaction to the claim yesterday from Mr Annan who was in Kenya on a 10-day tour of Africa. Mr Annan, from Ghana, became head of the UN at the beginning of 1997.

The timing of the accusation could hardly be more awkward as he is due in Rwanda itself later this week.

According to the report, by journalist Philip Gourevitch, Gen Dallaire was ordered not to intervene and to turn over what he had been told by the informant to the Hutu government of the late President Juvenal Habyarimana.

So Kofi Annan had amply manifested his prize-winning wickedness even before he became Secretary General of the UN, while it was still paying him to keep the peace. Tasked with which mission, he presided over a vast massacre.  

Greenfield then quotes an article by Nile Gardiner, Director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at the Heritage Foundation.

The 2006 article reveals more damning facts about Kofi Annan:

Established in the mid-1990s as a means of providing humanitarian aid to the Iraqi people, the Oil-for-Food Program was subverted and manipulated by Saddam Hussein’s regime, with the complicity of U.N. officials, to help prop up the Iraqi dictator. Saddam’s dictatorship siphoned off billions of dollars from the program through oil smuggling and systematic thievery, by demanding illegal payments from companies buying Iraqi oil, and through kickbacks from those selling goods to Iraq-all under the noses of U.N. bureaucrats.

Despite widespread criticism, Kofi Annan has never taken responsibility for a scandal that has irreparably damaged the U.N.’s reputation. A huge cloud remains over the U.N. Secretary General with regard to his meetings with senior officials from the Swiss Oil-for-Food contractor Cotecna, which employed his son Kojo from 1995 to 1997 and continued to pay him through 2004.

Questions also remain regarding Annan’s appointment of German activist Achim Steiner as Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) just months after Steiner helped award Annan $500,000.Steiner, whose four-year term of office began in June 2006, was part of a nine-member jury chaired by a senior U.N. official, which gave a cash gift to Annan last December. Annan’s initial decision to accept such a huge prize (eventually given to charity [under pressure – ed]), as well as his subsequent appointment of a man who had played a key role in the award of that money, gave the appearance of a major abuse of power. Both were extraordinary acts of political recklessness by the Secretary General and gave the impression that jobs at the world body may be traded for financial favors.

Plainly, the impression was not false.

All that is useful information, a mere sampling though it is of Kofi Annan’s perfidy.

But the same article ends with this:

Today’s United Nations is a broken institution in fundamental need of wholesale reform. That is Annan’s legacy, and the United States and the world looks forward to new leadership at Turtle Bay-leadership that is untarnished by the taint of scandal and actually lives up to the ideals of the U.N.’s own Declaration of Human Rights. The U.N. needs a Secretary General who will seek real reform of the U.N. bureaucracy and aggressively stand up for democracy, human rights, and freedom.

We are in agreement with Nile Gardiner’s view on many subjects. But we do not agree that the UN is a “broken institution”. It is as whole – and as wholly evil – as it ever was.

The UN was a rotten institution from the day it was conceived. Its ideals were sentimental dreams, it’s Declaration of Human Rights a cruel lie.  

None of its Secretary Generals has been a shining example of a virtuous human being. Nor will be, because of the nature of the institution.

No reform will make any difference to it. It is dominated  by tyrannies. It is dictated to by the Islamic states. Its Western contingent is slanted heavily to the Left. Its soldiers in the field, far from keeping peace as they are supposed to do, commit abominable crimes against the helpless poor people they are paid to protect, including the rape of children. And they get away with it.

The UN does no good. It only does harm.

The UN must be destroyed!

Why the UN must be destroyed 18

The UN must be destroyed because (to put it very mildly, coolly, and objectively):

  • It does no good to anyone
  • It does much harm to many
  • It is unreformable
  • It was a colossal mistake of wishful thinking from its beginning
  • It is kept going only because it is a gravy train for its bureaucrats and diplomats at enormous expense to tax-payers, especially Americans

A documentary film made recently by Ami Horowitz and Matt Groff, UN Me, exposes the worst incidences of its uselessness and corruption, violent and cruel actions, and refusals to do what it purportedly came into existence to do.

The following extracts are from an excellent article on the film by Bruce Bawer at Front Page. (It is well worth reading in full.)

UN Me begins by according us a few brief glimpses of the sheer sloth that characterizes the whole shebang. Old UN hands describe the short working days, long lunches, and frequent midday naps that characterize the everyday life of many of its functionaries. Wandering the halls of UN headquarters in New York shortly after 5 PM on a weekday, Horowitz … encounters a virtual ghost town: almost everybody has long since cleared out for the day. This institutional torpor is, he makes clear, emblematic of the whole worldwide enterprise. …

Horowitz reminds us that countries like Libya, Sudan, Zimbabwe, and China have sat on the UN Human Rights Commission – and, later, on the Human Rights Council that was meant to be an improvement on that comically corrupt agency.

In 2010, Iran was elected to the UN Commission on the Status of Women.

At one point in the film, Horowitz asks Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and director of the UN’s 2009 anti-racism conference in Geneva, why Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, of all people, was named keynote speaker at that event. That question, she replies in a small voice, is “not for me to answer.” (No, you don’t get far at the UN by providing honest answers to reasonable questions like that one.)

Horowitz informs us that Article 6 of the UN Charter actually “calls for the expulsion of any nation that consistently violates the principles of the charter.” Yet no member country has ever been expelled under Article 6. Shashi Tharoor, UN information chief, cheerfully explains that it’s best to have everybody “under the same tent.” …

The  film covers some of the more egregious scandals involving UN peacekeeping …  anecdotes about peacekeepers in various countries who, in their interactions with the people they were there to protect, acted like thugs, got rich trafficking drugs, spent their time whoring, and sexually abused minors. Peacekeepers in the Congo committed literally thousands of rapes. At least one ran a pedophilia ring.

We’re shown video of UN bureaucrats solemnly vowing that errant peacekeepers will be caught and punished. But in fact almost no UN peacekeeper has ever been held accountable for anything.

In Côte d’Ivoire, peacekeepers actually fired on peaceful, unarmed protestors.

They were standing together, men women and children, singing happily when UN sharp shooters fired on them. One of the few times the “peacekeepers”  have actually used their arms.

But was anyone punished? No; that’s just not the UN way. When Horowitz, in a sit-down interview with Abou Moussa, head of the UN mission in Côte d’Ivoire, asks about the episode, Moussa gets up and leaves.

The film moves on to the absurdity that is the International Atomic Energy Agency – which, tasked with preventing nuclear-arms proliferation, has actually helped North Korea, Iran, India, and Pakistan to acquire nuclear technology, purportedly for peaceful purposes. Since, as the film notes, the IAEA can only perform inspections in countries that invite it to do so, it spends more than 80% of its $380 million annual budget inspecting facilities in – believe it or not – Germany, Japan, and Canada. …

Iran carries on towards making nuclear weapons. The UN and its agencies can do nothing about it, nor would if they could. Iran’s President Ahmadinejad is one of the most honored, ecstatically applauded gasbags in the UN General Assembly, he who has homosexuals hanged and women stoned to death. Ahmadinejad is the perfect personification of the spirit of the United Nations Organization.  

Then there’s terrorism. After 9/11, the UN passed Resolution 1373, which was supposedly designed to fight terrorism. It would appear to be as toothless a measure as was ever ratified by a deliberative body. Horowitz interviews Javier Ruperez, whose title is – get this – Executive Director of the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate of the Counter-Terrorism Committee of the Security Council. Asked what the committee actually does to fight terrorism, Ruperez speaks blandly of the production of reports. Member countries, you see, are asked to file reports indicating whether or not they’re aiding terrorists. The directorate, or committee, or whatever it is also sends inspectors for, oh, a week or so to various countries to find out whether anything fishy is going on there. None of this, of course, actually accomplishes anything. Asked whether the UN has official lists of terrorist groups and of countries that support terror, Ruperez says no: “This is not the practice of the UN.” …

Another question: how does the UN define terrorism? This, Ruperez declares, is still a “pending matter.” …

The UN will not define terrorism because the General Assembly is dominated by terrorism-sponsoring states.

Next up: the Oil for Food scandal – which, as Claudia Rosett, the top-notch UN expert and eloquent UN critic, tells Horowitz, was absolutely “designed to produce corruption.” Allegedly, the objective of the program was to provide food, medical supplies, and so forth to the Iraqi people in exchange for oil; in reality, a bunch of UN big shots, up to and including Security Council representatives … lined their pockets with kickbacks. But, again, the UN did nothing – it was, as Rosett says, “the biggest scam in the history of human relief,” but nobody was fired or jailed. As always, the UN proved that nothing could be more alien to its institutional culture than the idea of accountability.

The Rwanda genocide gets its own sad chapter in UN Me. The head of the UN peacekeepers in that country, General Romeo Dallaire, actually wanted to do the right thing. But when he asked Kofi Annan, then in charge of all UN peacekeeping forces, for authority to take relatively modest action to prevent a looming genocide, Annan said no. Why? Because it was more important to protect the UN’s “image of impartiality” than to protect people from genocide. UN forces were even ordered to withdraw from a school where they were the only thing standing between Tutsi refugees – many of them children and old people – and Hutus with machetes. Result: a brutal massacre for which – yet again – no UN personnel were punished.

Live footage of what happened there is one of the most heart-rending scenes in the film.

While this nightmare was unfolding in Rwanda, Boutros-Boutros Ghali, then secretary-general of the UN, was on a European tour, which he refused to cancel in order to deal with Rwanda.

He had urgently to attend a string of universities bestowing honorary degrees on him for being such a benefactor of mankind.

When he did return to New York, he denied that Tutsi were being exterminated. …  Horowitz and Groff even got Jean-Marie Guéhenno, former Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, on camera smoothly asserting that in the wake of the Rwanda genocide, it’s best not to “allocate the blame to one actor or the other.”

Horowitz also interviews Jody Williams, a Nobel Peace Prize winner who was invited by the UN to examine the situation in Darfur and who ended up livid at the UN’s palpable discomfort with her undiplomatic conclusions and its failure to act on her urgent recommendations. …

At film’s end, Horowitz and Graff pose a simple question: what, given all these unpleasant facts, does the UN stand for? The answer, alas, is clear. It stands for itself – period. Like many other pointless bureaucracies, it is about perpetuating its own existence and enhancing its own image – and about seeking to squelch the truth about its fecklessness, incompetence, and absolute lack of a moral compass. It’s also … about providing hack politicians from around the world with yet another career steppingstone, once they’ve risen to the top of the ladder in their own crummy little countries and finished emptying their own citizens’ pockets.

Please watch the film!