I came to the conclusion that the UN was fatally flawed years ago when I was a long distance solo sailor thinking about the war in Iraq, listening to the BBC World Service and considering new ways to campaign for peace. My thoughts from back then are in my book 'Of land, Sea And Sky' available on Amazon and elsewhere.
Yesterday it was reported that there were two hundred airstrikes on Aleppo in just twenty four hours. Think about that for a moment two hundred in twenty four hours, with modern munitions. These were by the Russians and President Assad's forces. Cluster bombs were used on civilians, a designated war crime, hospitals and food markets were hit (again). There are so many burned out cars in the streets that getting casualties to what hospital facilities are left is becoming well nigh impossible.
Aleppo was a beautiful and historic city at the end of the famous silk road, it is supposed to be a World Heritage Site and yet the world stands by whilst its people and its heritage are destroyed. Why?
Well, the UN is first and foremost a club of governments and governments have vested self interest, but it's worse than that because five governments are more equal than all the rest - the five powers considered to have won World War Two. Why France is in that group I cannot imagine but however you look at it it's history and bears no relation to our world today, but Governments won't give up what they have.
Russia was the real victor of World War Two, Britain proudly stood alone in 1940 and it was truly our finest hour. America did great things on D-Day and in the effort to free Western Europe in particular and Hollywood will never let us forget it. The Atlantic Convoys were utterly heroic and much more, but, and it's a big but, some nine tenths of Hitler's war effort was directed at Russia and the twenty million Russian dead I was taught about at school now seems likely to be forty million souls. Compare that with our casualties.
Russia earned its place on the Security Council, but the world has changed. Russia feels the loss of the Soviet Union, her people think Putin is a great man, restoring their pride, but mass killing in Syria is not justified. The motive is to keep Syria as an ally and that means Assad must be in power. Peace, which is what the Security Council should be working for be damned.
The Russian people are not the problem, governments present themselves to people in certain ways and one of the lessons to be learned is don't believe what you are told by any government, western governments included, think for yourself and dig below the surface. The strategy in Aleppo is to drive civilians out by making life unbearable - it's a war crime.
A few months ago the conflict looked like it might end, but Russia's involvement gave Assad hope, when people have hope they can win outright they carry on, that prolonged the conflict and that means thousands more dead, including children and babies and many thousands more disfigured, made homeless and on and on. Russia can do this because she is militarily powerful and the Security Council stands by because Russia has an historic veto.
Ergo the UN is fatally flawed and needs to start again, from scratch with a new constitution.
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