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Lewis Morris / October 22, 2019

The United Nations’ UN-acceptable Corruption

Venezuela secured a seat on the Human Rights Council, which reveals the fraud.

The recent addition of Venezuela to the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) is yet another reminder about how ineffective and morally bankrupt the world body has become. The leftist dictatorship has jailed thousands and persecuted thousands more for not blindly following the regime of President Nicolas Maduro, who has turned down economic aid from other nations, presumably to teach his upstart populace a lesson.

Maduro’s government is no longer recognized as legitimate by the United States and close to 50 other countries. With this large and international group aligned against it, it seems hard to believe that Venezuela would win a seat on the HRC. But Libya and Sudan also received enough votes to join the Council this go-round, so it appears anything is possible — except common sense.

Venezuela received heavy support from Russia, China, and Cuba in its HRC bid, partly because it’s a fellow socialist state that is allied against the United States. Venezuela is also in deep to these countries to keep it on life support — they’re all taking discounted oil from Venezuela in exchange for medical supplies and food.

While on the HRC, Venezuela can be counted on to do everything it can to hide its government’s abuses of human rights. Venezuela, Sudan, and Libya all have horrible human-rights records. If the UN were even remotely a respectable organization, it would be completely against the rules for such a nation to sit on the Human Rights Council. It’s this hypocrisy that led President Donald Trump to withdraw America from the HRC last year. It’s also why the same group of rogue states prove themselves a menace year in, year out.

Another way to clean up the HRC is to change the voting procedure to an open ballot. Members of the UN General Assembly voted by secret ballot in this most recent HRC election, meaning no nation is accountable or answerable for its vote. When choosing the members of a world body that is tasked with protecting those who cannot protect themselves, voting parties should be required to vote publicly.

Yet finding support for even these basic reforms is next to impossible. Venezuela is one of a group of developing nations called the Non-Aligned Movement, which comprises a comfortable majority of the total UN membership. They may be called “non-aligned,” but these nations definitely act with a single voice when it comes to advancing their own causes, no matter how undemocratic they may be.

The United Nations clearly does not represent the best interests of the world. This is evident in the fact that Israel is considered a perpetual threat to human rights, while nations that are a proven threat to their own people (and Israel) serve on the HRC. It is evident in the crimes committed by UN peacekeepers whose crimes against neighboring states are buried in the press. It is also evident in sweeping UN treaties like the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) that seek to strip sovereign rights from U.S. citizens while turning a blind eye to the nations that actually are breaking international laws.

President Trump has refused to play along with the UN’s anti-American, anti-freedom agenda. He has pulled out of the ATT, and he has pulled out of the HRC, but what’s next? Could America pull out of the UN altogether? And what would happen if we did? It certainly wouldn’t make the UN a better organization. And it arguably wouldn’t make our country safer.

It seems that the only reason for staying in the UN is to provide a counterbalance of sanity to keep it from going completely down the drain. But is that argument really all that compelling?

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