Oversimplifying the UN

Anne Bayefsky’s caricature of the UN in The National Review would be offensive if it weren’t so laughable.

The U.N. is an uncomplicated place. Every sick, unsatiated tyrant, European has-been, or miserable wretch brainwashed about the Great Satan wants to take America down – unless they are able to immigrate of course. Their modus operandi? The United Nations.

So…everyone at the UN hates the U.S. so much that they either want to destroy it, or…become a citizen? Besides insulting the fairly significant contingent of non-brainwashed, America-hating, “washed-up” Member States in the UN, Bayefsky makes some astonishingly spurious claims about Barack Obama’s agenda for U.S.-UN relations, groundlessly accusing him of already planning to “put Israel on the chopping block” and “agree to some form of global taxation” (see here and here for indications that Obama’s actual policies on these respective issues could not be more opposite). These are only the two most ludicrous of a number of other nefarious positions that Bayefsky plants on the incoming administration and which it has in no way voiced support for.

Needless to say, the UN is a complicated place. It is the only forum at which representatives from all countries can voice their concerns, pursue their interests, and — ideally, of course — work together. Naturally, there is a fair share of bad actors who use its platform as a bully pulpit, but it is also the only mechanism through which the weight of the entire international community can — legitimately, concertedly, and most effectively — be leveraged to address transcendent global issues, from climate change to extreme poverty, counter-terrorism to peace in the Middle East.

This is simply far too expansive an organization to be boiled down as “uncomplicated.”