The UN’s Plot Against Parks

In the Pittsburgh Tribune Review an interview with anti-UN activist Nathan Tabor quickly descends into bizarre conspiracy mongering. Tabor, who authored a book called The Beast on the East River: The U.N. Threat to America’s Sovereignty and Security, tells the Tribune Review that the United Nations has effectively taken control of American National Parks.I think this would be news to Secretary of Interior Dirk Kempthorne, so let’s review Tabor’s claims.

“The Statue of Liberty, Yellowstone National Park, the Great Smoky Mountains, the Liberty Bell, Mt. Vernon are all under control of the United Nations.”

Q: We hear about this all the time on the right-wing talk shows — that the U.N. is taking over the national parks. How would you prove that to someone?

“I would direct them, hopefully, to buy my book. But if not, go to Google and search “world heritage sites.” This was a treaty in 1972. It was UNESCO’s Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Culture and National Heritage. This was ratified by the United States. Currently, there are 812 properties in 137 nations. This is what it says on its Web site: “World heritage sites belong to all the peoples of the world, irrespective of the territory on which they are located.”

Q: There’s nothing that has been implemented? No U.N. blue helmets at Yellowstone?

“No, not yet. But if you go to Yellowstone there are plaques that say this is a world heritage site designated by the United Nations.” (emphasis mine)

So there you have it: A UNESCO plaque at Yellowstone is evidence of the UN’s perfidious trampling of American sovereignty. And according to Tabor, after plaques come blue-helmets.

Tabor later claims that then-President Clinton cited Yellowstone’s UNESCO designation to prevent the opening of a gold mine on property near Yellowstone. That may be true, but an American president citing UNESCO to stop a mine near an endangered national park is hardly evidence that the UN dictated this decision. Actually, it is evidence that the American president, not the United Nations, directs policy on National Parks.

That should go without saying, but for someone who seems to think that the UN blue helmets may someday be stationed at Yellowstone, you never know.