I was reading this Wikipedia article on reform of the United Nations Security Council and thought it might make an interesting topic for discussion.
For myself, I think that there should be a few more permenent members but I don’t agree with giving anyone else the “veto.” I could acutally see reform of the use of the veto as well. Though I can’t off hand think of a good way to do it.
What would your ideas be for reforming the UN Security Council. Or do you think it’s fine as is? Or we should just “leave well enough alone?”
I don’t know enough to offer too much incite, but as with most organizations/forms of Government, the more people are involved, the more they buy into it, the more effective it can be. So, adding more permanent members seems to be a move in the right direction.
I would definitely say the world is better post-World Wars than pre-WW’s regarding armed conflicts. The UN is also effective as a humanitarian force, which was not really it’s intended purpose. Although, there is much to be improved in both areas.
Here is an article decrying the UN as currently ineffective concerning recent North Korean events. Here is a thoughtful counterpoint.
France has the third largest military by expenditure, is a nuclear power and has the fifth largest economy in the world by GDP. It, along with the fellow Germany and veto holding UK also make up the “big three” countries with the most pull in the EU. I’d say it still has a decent claim to it’s permanent seat. . Granted that’s partly because Germany and Japan aren’t really in the running because of the way WWII shook out.
In anycase, I can’t think of a criteria that would justify booting France but not the slightly smaller (by all three measures above) UK. It’s moot anyways, since presumably any member would veto an attempt to take away its veto.
I could see a point being made for India to hold a seat having both nukes and a billion people.
Other suggestion include having Britian and France merge their seat into a “European Union” seat. That I don’t see as realistic but it makes sense.
Japan and Germany while Economic powerhouses don’t currently have the military nor political will.
African nations complain no members on the council on a permenent basis as does South America. South America (or Latin America) presents a problem as Brazil is the logical place but as a Portuguese nation it is said it isn’t representative of the rest of the Spanish speaking nations.
The Arabs and Muslim seek a seat but I can’t see them doing it on the basis of religion, although India with the third largest Muslim community (after Indonesia and Pakistan) would help diffuse the Muslim problem in a way.
Not sure how you measure “military will” but Japan has the 5th and Germany the 6th largest militaries by expenditures in the world. Both spend more then current SC member Russia.
Regardless of their “will” though, China won’t allow Japan to have a seat. Germany is probably more do-able, but has the effect of loading the Council with Westerm European nations, and at the end of the day probably wouldn’t make any meaningful difference since Germany already has three close allies on the Council who would vote more or less the same way anyways.
Of course, all this sort of begs the question: why allow more permanent members? More vetos will simply make the body less likely to take action, and I don’t really see how more members would add to the UN’s abilities to execute its mission. Someday Brazil or India may become powerful and rich enough that any SC decision made without their consent and co-operation would be meaningful, as is the case today with the US, the EU Russia and China. Then it would probably be necessary to include them in the Council, but until then I don’t really see the advantage to messing with the current system.