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Leonardo

Is it Time the UN Leaves New York?

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Posted (edited)

Iran has accused the US of acting illegally by refusing a visa to the new Iranian envoy to the UN in New York.

Iran's UN mission spokesman Hamid Babaei called the decision to bar Hamid Aboutalebi "regrettable", but did not specify any action Tehran might take.

The US accuses Mr Aboutalebi of links to the group that seized the US embassy in 1979, an incident that soured ties between the two countries for decades.

Mr Aboutalebi says he only acted as a translator for the group.

Congress passed a bill last week that would allow the US to refuse an ambassadorial selection if the candidate posed a security risk.

source

This type of issue will only become more common, as US foreign policy and intervention ratchets up the tension between the US and other nations. So, is the US becoming unviable as a place in which to locate an organisation dedicated to world diplomacy?

The US Congress appears to be caught between US isolationism and engagement with the rest of the world, with the former ruling the roost at present.

While many Americans might indeed welcome any decision to relocate the UN's headquarters, such a move would deal a severe blow to the US's prestige, and thus it's capacity to influence other nations via diplomacy. This prestige is something many other nations would covet and their hosting of the UN's headquarters at the US's expense would be a major coup.

This is not to say such a move is very likely, and this latest spat will certainly ease with time, but the US Congress is doing itself no international favours with it's "patriotism", designed purely for domestic consumption.

Edited by Leonardo
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Well, its sole purpose for at least the last 20 years has been merely to rubber-stamp the wishes of the US, hasn't it, kind of like the Soviet Parliament under the USSR. (And of course, if it doesn't agree to the US doing what it wants, then they just completely ignore it.) How it could possibly be impartial and neutral when it depends on the co-operation of the US, i really can't see.

Perhaps Vatican City might be a good location for it, or San Marino or Andorra?

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The Manhatten land on which the UN is headquartered is considered extra-territorial, so in theory the US should not be allowed to influence who nations assign as delegates. Obviously, practice works slightly differently.

And, yes, there is the preception that the UN is beholden to the US. I'm not sure how accurate that perception is, but there is no doubt the US wields great influence there - and in no little measure simply by being the host nation.

I agree that any potential new host nation should not be a 'world-mover', else we would likely see a similar situtation develop. But just how feasible is it for the UN to 'up sticks' and relocate?

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What about one of those decommissioned rigs (Sealandia?) tht'd be a good Bond villain lair UN headquarters.

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What about one of those decommissioned rigs (Sealandia?) tht'd be a good Bond villain lair UN headquarters.

A bit 'downmarket' for all the "high-class" :rolleyes: diplomats and their entourages, don't you think, SWoH?

*not that I disagree with you, necessarily*

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Yes. It's nothing more than a corrupt, useless organization that allows terrorists to run the show. It hasn't been relevant since the early 1950s. The US should get out of it, since the UN's interests and the US's interests don't coincide anymore. Without the US, and the money from the US, it will wither and die as it deserves to.

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Yes. It's nothing more than a corrupt, useless organization that allows terrorists to run the show. It hasn't been relevant since the early 1950s. The US should get out of it, since the UN's interests and the US's interests don't coincide anymore. Without the US, and the money from the US, it will wither and die as it deserves to.

Be careful what you ask for, HA.

The grass isn't always greener and you'd be surprised at how much protection for the 'weaker nations' the UN has actually provided against deprivations by the more powerful.

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Yes. It's nothing more than a corrupt, useless organization that allows terrorists to run the show. It hasn't been relevant since the early 1950s. The US should get out of it, since the UN's interests and the US's interests don't coincide anymore.

you mean by not automatically rubber-stamping any Military action the US wants to take against anywhere that doesn't do what the US wants it to? Not, as I remarked above, that that makes the slightest difference to whether the US goes ahead & does it, of course; that all depends on how strong the President is, it wasn't the UN that forestalled Military intervention in Syria, it was because everyone saw through Obama as being full of bluster.

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It should be located in Geneva. The fact it is on "non neutral" territory is telling of a certain amount of bias.

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The UN should have multiple "homes" around the world. As a truly international body it could change locations every two years and the host country could pay for the privilege by accommodating the members and their entourages. This would be fair and it would lead to a greater belief in impartiality. Or they could just vacate the property they're on now and choose another spot. Either way the budget should be reduced dramatically and the living expenses of the delegates should be greatly curtailed.

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Posted (edited)

The UN should have multiple "homes" around the world. As a truly international body it could change locations every two years and the host country could pay for the privilege by accommodating the members and their entourages. This would be fair and it would lead to a greater belief in impartiality. Or they could just vacate the property they're on now and choose another spot. Either way the budget should be reduced dramatically and the living expenses of the delegates should be greatly curtailed.

Your first recommendation would seem to conflict quite markedly with your last.

How would the UN be able to reduce it's budget for operating a headquarters if expected to relocate at regular intervals?

Switzerland would be a good location, as Jeremiah suggests. Canada or Denmark would also be suitable, even if they're not "neutral" nations.

Edited by Leonardo

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Posted (edited)

Your first recommendation would seem to conflict quite markedly with your last.

How would the UN be able to reduce it's budget for operating a headquarters if expected to relocate at regular intervals?

Switzerland would be a good location, as Jeremiah suggests. Canada or Denmark would also be suitable, even if they're not "neutral" nations.

Not at all. The host countries would pay. The UN's budget could be used only for the wonderful projects they want to transform the planet with :)

To be more specific, the records and IT infrastructure would be in the cloud and only the physical facilities - the meeting rooms and staff residences - would need to be provided. No reason these should be lavish. The locations could be matched to whoever is the president that year.

Edited by and then

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Not at all. The host countries would pay. The UN's budget could be used only for the wonderful projects they want to transform the planet with :)

Why?

The US does not carry the costs of the current UN headquarters. Why would any other potential host nation?

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Why?

The US does not carry the costs of the current UN headquarters. Why would any other potential host nation?

In fact, mostly it does not even pay its share for the costs either....

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Why?

The US does not carry the costs of the current UN headquarters. Why would any other potential host nation?

I was unaware of that little factoid. Maybe the gift of some of the most expensive property in the nation was deemed enough? Anyway, though I do not want the US to even be part of the UN I still made the suggestion not to bash it but to try to mend the problem of appearances. If all the nations had an opportunity to host then it would be symbolic of greater equality, no? And while I'm not aware of the actual numbers I suspect that if the US didn't pay, this institution would have closed doors a LONG time ago.

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Not at all. The host countries would pay. The UN's budget could be used only for the wonderful projects they want to transform the planet with :)

To be more specific, the records and IT infrastructure would be in the cloud and only the physical facilities - the meeting rooms and staff residences - would need to be provided. No reason these should be lavish. The locations could be matched to whoever is the president that year.

Do you think Diplomats would be seen dead anywhere less than lavish?

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I was unaware of that little factoid. Maybe the gift of some of the most expensive property in the nation was deemed enough? Anyway, though I do not want the US to even be part of the UN

is that so that the UN can't use all its power and might to interfere in the US's manifest destiny to do whatever it likes wherever it likes if it thinks it suits it?

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Eh, they should all just teleconference. That way they can sit in their armchairs at home.

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is that so that the UN can't use all its power and might to interfere in the US's manifest destiny to do whatever it likes wherever it likes if it thinks it suits it?

Wait, on the one hand you accuse the US of ignoring the UN then you imply that it has some control - which is it? The feeling here is that due to the UN being in the US we have too much influence - or that we just ignore the UN anyway - so why does it matter if it resides elsewhere? It's an impotent entity anyway. The changes that matter in the world rarely can get through the UNSC due to power politics. Your stance on the faults and sins of the US are totally immaterial to me. Could not possibly care less what you think of my country. :)

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Then why do you wish the US to be free of this malevolent entity, if it is, as you suggest or surmise, useless? Do you wish the US to be free to pursue its own interests regardless of their effect on the rest of the world? Would you be happy if other countries, for example, China, Russia or Iran, were to decide to adopt similar policies, or would you be up in arms, metaphorically and literally, and calling for immediate military action? Would you be happy to see an absolute free for all with no kind of mediation at all, however flawed, or is it one law for one (the US) and one for the rest of the world?

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Eh, they should all just teleconference. That way they can sit in on their armchairs thrones at home.

Fixed that for you, Gromdor. :tu:

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Then why do you wish the US to be free of this malevolent entity, if it is, as you suggest or surmise, useless? Do you wish the US to be free to pursue its own interests regardless of their effect on the rest of the world? Would you be happy if other countries, for example, China, Russia or Iran, were to decide to adopt similar policies, or would you be up in arms, metaphorically and literally, and calling for immediate military action? Would you be happy to see an absolute free for all with no kind of mediation at all, however flawed, or is it one law for one (the US) and one for the rest of the world?

Young man I've grown quite tired of being interrogated by you over nearly every post I make. As for the suggestion of a free for all - I think it has always been that way. Nations use their powers and influence to increase their powers and influence. That's what life is like in a real, grown up world. Maybe someday you'll get that. Your naivete is boring after awhile. China, Russia, whoever... when America no longer wields the greatest power then some other entity will assume that mantle. Your constant harping on America shows your immaturity. But if it makes you feel better somehow to rail against the unfairness of life then by all means - p*** and moan to your heart's content :w00t:

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Because of UN meetings, there is too much traffic, road closures, no hotel space, security, and other nonesense in Manhattan.

Yes, this useless org must get out of NYC, or even cease to exist.

BTW, did the UN stop the genocide in Rwanda? No! Thus, it's interests are US based, and anti-Russian. If the U.S. wants Russia to "give back" Crimea to Ukraine then US must give California, Texas, Arizona, back to Mexico.

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Because of UN meetings, there is too much traffic, road closures, no hotel space, security, and other nonesense in Manhattan.

Yes, this useless org must get out of NYC, or even cease to exist.

BTW, did the UN stop the genocide in Rwanda? No! Thus, it's interests are US based, and anti-Russian. If the U.S. wants Russia to "give back" Crimea to Ukraine then US must give California, Texas, Arizona, back to Mexico.

Russia (USSR) gave Crimea to Ukraine no? If I give something away then it is no longer mine, no? But even if Crimea is forgotten, do you believe Russia should be able to control all the rest of their neighbor? All of Ukraine? Because that seems like what Putin is contemplating.

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Russia (USSR) gave Crimea to Ukraine no? If I give something away then it is no longer mine, no? But even if Crimea is forgotten, do you believe Russia should be able to control all the rest of their neighbor? All of Ukraine? Because that seems like what Putin is contemplating.

only in 1954, to be precise.. Crimea and adjacent territories were united in the Crimean Khanate during the 15th to 18th century before falling to the Russian Empire and being organised as itsTaurida Oblast in 1783. In 1954, the Soviet Crimean Oblast was transferred from Russia to Ukraine. It became the Autonomous Republic of Crimea within newly independent Ukraine in 1991, with Sevastopol having its own administration within Ukraine but outside of the Autonomous Republic.

So it was just an administrative adjustment, since I'm sure you'll agree that there wouldn't have been much thought of allowing greater autonomy for Ukraine behind doing it.

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