UN Question - Is US risking UN counter action?

I was recently reading an article on the different views held by the UN members regarding a possible military attack by the US.

It seems, for the most part, the UN does NOT approve of military action against Iraq.

With the US recently expressing the intent of military action, even without UN approval, will the US be breaking any sort of agreement with the UN? Can we be punished through sanctions or even a possible counter attack by UN countries because of it?

The chances of the UN applying sanctions to the US are zero. Such an action would have to be approved by the UN Security Council, and the US would veto such a resolution.

The General Assembly could condemn a US invasion of Iraq, for each member state has one vote and there are no vetos of such resolutions. But such a resoution would be non-binding.

If Canada wishes to invade the US without a UN Security Council authorization in retaliation for the US invading Iraq, they would find themselves in violation of the UN Charter and may be condemned for such.

But waitaminute… the US… Iraq… UN Charter… ah, forget it.

So are you saying that what the UN says means jack crap to the US?


First, assuming that the vast majority of the UN security council suddenly flips, and opposes the US, what, exactly, could the UN do?

It seems to me I’ve been posting this exact same sentence over and over again every day. So here it is again, in bold letters this time:

The UN’s power lies solely in the will of the member nations to enforce it.

The UN has no control over sovereign nations. It is just a convenient forum for doing diplomacy. If the UN wants to do something, it must convince the member nations to back it up, either through economic, political or military action. No civilized country is going to risk military action against the US, because 1) Such a war would be very, very, very bloody, and 2) the leaders of civilized nations are not, generally, insane, and 3) the US is a huge trading partnet to almost everyone, and 4) much of the world’s economy relies on US stability.

Nothing. The US has a veto on the security council. See also my previous post.