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The UN-holier than Thou

The United Nations is seen by many, idiotarians and some otherwise quite reasonable people, as the nearest thing we have, in these modern times, to some sort of institution with ‘divine’ authority. I am sick of hearing about how the United States or UK or any other country is evil because it is acting without authorisation from the UN. It is therefore with glee that I relay any news showing that behind the edifice of self-righteousness and vast amounts of funds is all too human and corrupt an institution.

The Inter Press Service News Agency reports that the United Nations has been hit by a rash of new complaints about sexual abuse of women and children by peacekeepers, civilian staff and humanitarian organisations operating either with the blessings of the world body or under the U.N. flag. In May the news wrote about a UN probe into reports of sexual abuse by Congo staff, but things have ‘progressed’ since then.

A system-wide investigation was triggered by a report from Annan, who says that six out of 48 U.N. agencies operating in the field have received reports of new cases of sexual exploitation or abuse, mostly by blue-helmeted U.N. peacekeepers, during 2003.

The agencies that received the complaints include the Department of Peacekeeping Operations, the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, the U.N. Children’s Fund, the World Food Programme and the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees. Margaret Stanley of Ireland said:

Sexual exploitation, including all forms of trafficking and related offences, particularly in the case of vulnerable persons dependent on international aid, is completely unacceptable.

Rosemary McCreery, Assistant Secretary-General for Human Resources Management, specifically singled out the sexual abuse perpetrated by civilian, police and military contingents in Kosovo and in the Bunia region in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). McCreery said preliminary internal investigations this year had revealed ”widespread abuses” in DRC.

The ‘Washington Times’ also reported that a soon-to-be-released book by current and former U.N. employees contends that Bulgarian peacekeepers in Cambodia in the mid-1990s were actually former convicts who agreed to serve six months in the Southeast country in exchange for their freedom at the end of their term. The Bulgarians were “drunk as sailors” and “rape vulnerable Cambodian women”, according to the book, Emergency Sex and Other Desperate Measures: A True Story From Hell on Earth. Bulgaria’s ambassador to the United States has denied the allegations.

The investigation into such allegations are not examplary either and several delegates are complaining that the world body is not doing enough. Karen Lock of South Africa said:

The secretary-general’s report had not elaborated extensively on measures taken to improve the conditions of refugees and vulnerable communities. It was hoped that those measures would be reported in greater detail to the appropriate inter-governmental bodies.

So we have oil for food or rather oil-for-terror and money for UN officials and assorted politicians, humanitarian aid that dare not speak its name and a sanctimonious veneer that gives tranzis and Guardianistas of all shades opportunity to draw on moral ‘authority’ for their deranged vision for the world.

21 comments to The UN-holier than Thou

  • The stories coming out of Cambodia about the Bulgarians have entered popular mythology in that country. The Bulgarian government at the time was not aware of how much the soldiers would be paid, amounting to more than the local annual wage per week, and having heard of the nightmare of Pol Pot had thought that it would be a punishment posting for them, thus they cleared the prisons. Within weeks the regular Bulgarian army was complaining that it had not been sent to Pnom Phen.

  • GCooper

    Here’s another story the BBC will either never run – or bury as fast as it possibly can.

    Meanwhile the usual hacks will be given maximum airtme to lecture us about ‘the need for UN involvement’ in just about every issue imaginable.

  • BigFire

    Meanwhile in Gaza, UN personel are trying their best to aid and abet terrorists by smuggling weapons and explosives through security checkpoints using UN vehicle. One UN official demanded apology from Israeli government for making such slanderious statement. That is until IDF produced the video show exactly that. Apology from the same official will not be forthcoming.

  • A_t

    BigFire, got a link for that?

  • R C Dean

    And may we contrast the apparent lack of effective action by the UN against its resident criminals with the action underway against the Abu Ghraib guards? The test of an institution isn’t so much whether its people never do any wrong, but rather how the institution reacts when they do.

  • S. Weasel

    A_t: Here you go. Link to the video is two paragraphs down.

    A Reuters representative and I sat together… at their Jerusalem bureau to edit down several segments of the longer un-edited material,” writes Dave Bender, Senior Editor of Access Middle East. “The material left out, in order to keep the file size minimal, consisted of random similar scenes of armed and unarmed Palestinians thronging the street seen in the clip. This accounts for the somewhat jumpy cuts. However, nothing relevant has been deleted or distorted from this version,” adds Bender.

  • Eamon Brennan

    Oh did the IDF say so. Well thats all right then.

    Remember this

    Military sources said that troops had spotted the approaching demonstrators, among them armed men, and asked a helicopter to fire a warning missile at an open field. But when the crowd continued to march, a tank fired three shells at the nearby abandoned building to ward the protesters off.

    Do you believe in the tooth fairy as well.

    Eamon Brennan

  • R C Dean

    Eamon, what are you trying to say? That a completely unrelated event somehow casts doubt on the video of the ambulance? That your skepticism of the IDF also stretches to include the editing done by Reuters (!) and Access Middle East?

  • king crab

    No, R C, he’s saying that he’s proud to be an ignorant twat.

  • A_t

    Hmm.. yeah, Eamon’s somewhat off target on this one, tho’ he’s right that the IDF are an exceedingly unreliable source of ‘information’.

    On the fake ambulance front, the report seems to indicate that palestinian fighters decked out the ‘ambulances’ to look like official vehicles. There’s no suggestion of any UN officials or real ambulances being involved in this incident. So yeah, the fighters are dastardly, but then who didn’t know this?

  • A_t

    I find it interesting that none of you felt fit to comment on the fact that the ambulances were mocked up, and not official UN vehicles. Impartial observers, all.

  • Cydonia

    I’m no admirer of the U.N. With a few limited exceptions, it is just an entity devoted to furthering the cause of Statism worldwide.

    But that said, we should be careful not to ape our enemies. The report refers to :

    “Sexual exploitation, including all forms of trafficking and related offences, particularly in the case of vulnerable persons dependent on international aid, is completely unacceptable.” (my emphasis)

    However, “trafficking”, unless it involves coercion (i.e. slavery) is unobjectionable. It’s just a form of trade – usually done to get around Statist restrictions on freedom of movement or the sex industry. To treat it as akin to rape (with talk of “vunerable persons” and the like) is just politically correct cant. Libertarians ought not to treat “trafficking” as a term of abuse, tempting though it may be in this case.

  • S. Weasel

    On the fake ambulance front, the report seems to indicate that palestinian fighters decked out the ‘ambulances’ to look like official vehicles.

    No it doesn’t, if you’re talking about the Arutz Sheva article I linked to. It refers to UNRWA ambulances. Then it says “There have also been developments in the case of phony ambulances… ” (emphasis mine), clearly a separate matter.

    Impartial yourself.

  • A_t

    “Impartial yourself.”

    haha!! great insult 🙂

    & Oops.. you’re perfectly correct; my bad; apologies.

  • I have to agree – I don’t think this constitutes “abuse” – give any man load of wedge, send him to a foreign country and he’ll try to get laid.

    On the trafficing question, one susects that this involves taking a girlfriend back home to say Bulgaria, with the relationship breaking down as said Girlfriend discovers Bulgarias not all its cracked up to be and soldier tires of girlfriend who can’t speak bulgarian.

    Said girlfreind or her mom and dat then complains to UN that she has been trafficked

  • Scott

    And may we contrast the apparent lack of effective action by the UN against its resident criminals with the action underway against the Abu Ghraib guards?

    You mean we’re better ’cause we throw a few scapegoats to the wolves?

  • Eamon Brennan


    Yes. Funnily enough, thats exacty what I am saying.


    try and address the issue and try to avoid the ad Hominems. I might take you more seriously.


  • drscroogemcduck

    Chances are the ambulance was commandeered by the terrorists. In the remote event that a UN employee was collaborating with the terrorists, the reactions from the media and bloggers would be interesting. I would be betting on lots of sneering (and maybe deserved) ‘When did Kofi know?” and “the UN is knowingly putting terrorist sympathizers in dangerous positions” comments coming from bloggers.

  • Shawn

    Of course the IDF cant be trusted. It a Jewish organisation fighting against the sainted politically correct victims of the week, the (cue violins) Palestinians.

    But personally, I would trust the IDF over the leftist mainstream media anyday.

  • Jacob

    The UN corrupt ? Big deal ! UN “peace keepers” and other functionaries act as they are accustomed and thaught in their home countries. Why would anyone expect them to act differently ?

  • BigFire

    Re: Jacob

    Because the UN fans have this illogical notion that donning the blue helmet makes a man saint, not what’s in his heart and mind. And the refusal of US military to submit to UN command makes United State the Great Satan.