Blog Roundup #30

A sampling of United Nations related blog commentary

Chez Nadezhda: “The Democracy Fund is one of several “UN reform” initiatives that both the US and Annan have embraced, as highlighted in this briefing by Nicholas Burns in June. By announcing the creation of the fund now, with the September summit as a target date for unveiling the thing, it looks like Kofi is giving a boost to the US’ fund-raising and organizing efforts. So far, it seems the US has rounded up 25 other countries who, in a letter last month to Annan, have supported Bush’s proposal and indicated they are considering providing some financing.”

Juan Cole: “Russian Premier Vladimir Putin is pushing the other members of the G8 to give the United Nations a leading role in Iraq and setting a timetable for US withdrawal. As regular readers know, the first part of this plan is one that I have also endorsed. The Russians have explored a role as intermediaries in Iraq, having their ambassador in Baghdad meet with Shiite nationalist Muqtada al-Sadr last month.”

Light Up the Darkness: “Updates on the London Bombing Coverage – U.N. Condemns London Terror Strikes – Hours after the bombings in London, the U.N. Security Council “voted unanimously to condemn the terrorist attacks and vowed to bring those responsible to justice.” Secretary-General Kofi Annan echoed that sentiment. “These vicious acts have cut us all to the core, for they are an attack on humanity itself,” Annan said in a statement. “Today, the world stands shoulder to shoulder with the British people.”

Marginal Revolution: “I’ll be blogging next week from Monrovia, Liberia. I will try to post three to four times, but the reliability of “internet cafes” in Liberia is suspect at best. Liberia may be the poorest nation in the world. Recent estimates from the world bank indicate that per capita gross national income in Liberia is about half that of Rwanda…. Since the fall of 2003, U.N. troops have been stationed in Liberia to disarm the various factions, keep the peace, and oversee presidential elections (slated for this coming October).”

Steve Clemons: “[T]he battle over Sandra Day O’Connor’s seat is only just beginning — and will dominate the news for the weeks ahead. And yet on top of that drama, we have a major terrorist attack in London — another tremendous tragedy. That too will take attention and time and calls for the White House to send a constructive, bridge-building personality to the U.N. to strengthen the league of those who stand against this type of violence and want to build an “ideology of hope,” to use President Bush’s words.”