|Read the following article carefully. REALLY READ IT. And
while reading, bear in mind:
Would Americans join the U.S. military to proudly become PEACE KEEPERS under command of Ford Motor Company lackeys? IS there a difference here?
UN report: Sovereignty can be forfeited on humanitarian grounds
By Willian M. Reilly
UNITED NATIONS, March 20 (UPI) -- A United Nations University study of NATO 's intervention in Kosovo said Monday a profound change in world politics has emerged, mainly that sovereignty can be forfeited on humanitarian grounds.
But the study co-edited by the Tokyo-based institution's vice rector, Ramesh Thakur, and Albrecht Schnabel with contributor Ray Funnel, a retired Australian air marshal, warned the precedent will have dangerously undermined international order unless world powers can agree on principles to guide future interventions, in similar circumstances. "Kosovo and The Challenge of Humanitarian Intervention" is billed as a "compendium of authoritative viewpoints on many dimensions of the 1999 crisis" and on recommended follow-up steps.
Those steps include promotion of "an international consensus about the point at which a state forfeits its sovereignty," and removal of veto power in the Security Council in exceptional circumstances "so that the support of a majority of the great powers is all that is required to permit states to engage in humanitarian war."
"Kosovo confronted us with an abiding challenge of humanitarian intervention: namely, is it morally just, legally permissible and militarily feasible?" asked Thakur. "In today's dangerously unstable world full of complex conflicts, concerned countries and citizens face the painful dilemma of being condemned if they do and damned if they don't.
"To use force unilaterally is to violate international law and undermine world order. Yet to respect sovereignty all the time is to be complicit in human rights violations sometimes. To argue that the U.N. Security Council must give its consent to humanitarian war is to risk policy paralysis by handing over the agenda to the most egregious and obstreperous."
"The bottom line question for us is this: Faced with another Holocaust or Rwanda-type genocide on the one hand, and a Security Council veto on the other, what would we do?" Thakur asked. "A new consensus on humanitarian intervention is urgently needed."
Contributors, the authors said, cited the need to reform the Security Council, including possible removal of veto power in such circumstances as those present in Kosovo.
The U.N. General Assembly has been wrestling with council reform for years now, including the status of veto for the present five permanent members of Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States as well as any possible additions to the select club.
"The permanent members and their interests should not prevent the Security Council from getting involved and stall the U.N.'s attempts to provide assistance to those in need. Otherwise we might see more NATO-style actions with less or no UN involvement - and thus less order and less justice in our global community," said Schnabel, the other co-editor.
"It is good that the international system can tear down the walls of state sovereignty in cases where states kill their own people," he said. "Organizations like the U.N., however, need to be willing and able to confront these catastrophes wherever they occur."
Russian and Chinese opposition to military intervention in Kosovo prevented the Security Council from acting so NATO decided to intervene on its own.
Thakur said, "Many of today's wars are nasty, brutish and internal. The world community cannot help all victims, but must step in where it can make a difference. Selective indignation is inevitable, for we simply cannot intervene everywhere, every time. But we must still pursue policies of effective indignation. Humanitarian intervention must be collective, not unilateral. And it must be legitimate, not in violation of the agreed rules which comprise the foundations of world order."
The study, released at U.N. headquarters in New York, said, "continuing fallout from Kosovo has the potential to redraw the landscape of international politics, with significant ramifications for the UN, major powers and regional organizations, and the way in which world politics are understood and interpreted."
That fallout was from parties involved in the conflict, NATO allies, the immediate region surrounding the conflict, and further.
"Any possible argument that NATO might underwrite European stability has lost validity for Russia," the study said.
China's concern over what happened in Yugoslavia may be repeated in Asia, was also addressed.
"The problem of using force by the strong against the weak will only create disorder. While China does not want to challenge or compete with U.S. superiority, it rejects U.S. domination or hegemony," the UNU study said.
Many in Islamic countries argued that NATO committed strategic mistakes. Among them: not intervening earlier, refusing to deploy ground troops to put a decisive end to the conflict, and not anticipating President Slobodan Milosevic's resort to the eviction of hundreds of thousands of Muslims from Kosovo, the study said.
It pointed out many in those countries supported the war because they identified with the Muslim victims in Kosovo.
Reflecting the positions of the Non-Aligned Movement and the Organization for African Unity in particular, according to the South African government, concluded that unilateral intervention, no matter how noble the motive, is not acceptable, said the study. A broad, non-discriminatory multi-lateralism (in all areas, including trade and security) is the best safeguard for the developing world against unilateral misuse of power by the strong.
"For many developing countries, the international community runs the danger of becoming hostage to the machinations of a few privileged and powerful countries," the study said. "Many developing countries may feel compelled to move toward ensuring greater security for themselves through acquisition of more weaponry. There is almost total unanimity in India that the country needs to strengthen itself militarily to the extent that there can be no scope for any interference in the affairs on the sub-continent."
Critics of NATO's Kosovo action said in the study that international efforts to contain the conflict were "modest and hesitant. Later, faced with a brutal and rapidly escalating war, the international community reacted with consternation and confusion."
Said the study, "What was at stake was not only the fate of the Albanian population of Kosovo. It was also the standing and reputation of the major democratic countries involved in the NATO operation and the credibility of NATO itself."
(The study is available at www.unu.edu and UNU Press plans to publish a book based on the study later this year.)
United Press International.