If you love humanity, hawk peace, and send your troops to other countries to establish sanity, then you are a ‘misfit’ in the sweepstakes of United Nations. Be a bully and you will be respected. And feared.
This is the lesson India has finally learnt, since 1945 when the UN came into existence.
The world body has always been, and will always be, ruled by those who successfully camouflage their power-play, barbarianism, selfish ends, and long-term strategies couched in academic vocabulary.
But we cannot blame the UN. Its DNA was written by the victors of the Second World War: the USA, France, the UK, Russia, and China.
Actually, China had not even fought in the main war theatre of Europe but only its extension in the Far East—against Japan. This war was known as the Second Sino-Japanese War, a military conflict that took place between July 1937 (the Second World War started only in September 1939) and September 1945. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) dates it back to the Japanese invasion of Manchuria in 1931.
This war was not fought by the Communist Party but by the Chiang Kai Shekh-led nationalist government of the Republic of China, which later shifted base to Taiwan. The Communists later sold outcome of this war to the Allies as ‘part of the Second World War’ and themselves both as its victims and victors so as to grab a membership on the high table of the UN Security Council.
China also got support from India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru who did not want the UN to become an exclusive All-White Club and who was dreaming of making India a Third World Leader via the Non-Aligned Movement.
The world is now paying for the follies of the Allies and India: China has morphed into a global bully and blackmailer.
See how China successfully blackmails the world: the US, which pays 22% of all the bills of the world body, has no control on the World Health Organization (WHO), which has merely become a lapdog of Beijing, as far as the coronavirus issue is concerned. Japan contributes the second-maximum amount to the UN but has no seat on the UNSC. Germany contributes more that France, UK and Russia put together, without any seat on the UNSC. Clearly, the UN no longer represents the world.
China pays no respect to the UNESCO-designated World Heritage Sites—its current sleeping-partner Turkey has reconverted Hagia Sophia into a mosque. Using North Korea, Pakistan and Iran to do its dirty work against the US, India and Saudi Arabia, Beijing regularly shields these rogue states at different world forums. That China respects no human rights either in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Tibet or Xinjiang is now a folklore.
Why should the world, therefore, bow to the so-called UN which is increasingly impotent, pale and helpless, controlled by China and no one else. All the remaining four members of the UNSC are no longer a match to Beijing.
It is, therefore, time to either restructure, reform and revamp it or dismantle the United Nations to create its broad-based successor the way the UN itself succeeded the League of Nations. Inadequacies of the UN should be removed in the next body.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has rightly voiced India’s serious concerns last week in his annual address to the UN General Assembly on its 75th anniversary. Earlier, US President Donald Trump had also raised questions about the WHO’s role in the outbreak of global pandemic.
Despite being the largest democracy and the most dependable nation for the UN to send its “peace-keeping’ force to the world’s volatile areas, India has been kept out of the UNSC since 1945: first of all, Britain saw to it that its former slave did not get a seat on the high table; then the US did so as it suspected that Russia could have an additional vote in New Delhi; now, China is ensuring that India does not get a membership of the UNSC and the power to veto.
At present, with India inching closer to Washington, Russia does not actually want New Delhi to get the seat, although it is one of the largest defence buyer from Moscow.
Apart from India, there are some more countries that deserve to get a UNSC seat. They are Germany, Japan, Brazil, and South Africa. Germany and Japan are no longer treated as losers of the Second World War but as vibrant economies and responsible countries; Brazil is the biggest economy of South America and South Africa is no longer infamous for apartheid. Australia is also a good candidate.
Clearly, the world has moved on from the hysterical sentiments of 1945. The UN should also, likewise, be reformed and revamped—or junked to be replaced by a more representative body of more than 200 member-states.
If Trump wins a second term in November 2020, he should follow up his concerns by either forcing an overhaul of the UN functioning, or kicking out the world body from the American soil. Predictably, China will offer land to shift the world body—but that will expose its game-plan to the rest of the world! Barring his four or five acolytes, no other country would be interested in an UN shifted from America to China—particularly not after 137 of them demanding a thorough probe into the Wuhan-origin of Covid-19.
India, and other countries as well, should understand that there is no place for emotional issues, ethics and other such stuff in the UN’s functioning. The world listens to only those who believe in realpolitik.
No one understands it better than Beijing which has virtually bought the UN using all the tricks in the diplomatic trade.
Even if India gets a permanent seat on the UNSC, it would hardly matter, except as a cathartic feeling that it is now a member of the high table. At the most, New Delhi can use its veto against Pakistan, which is already being supported by China. We have seen the fate of different UN resolutions against Pakistan, vetoed by Beijing.
So, even a membership of the UNSC may only provide India a psychological satisfaction of having ‘arrived’ as a regional power, even as a ‘superpower’ on the global centre-stage.
Even without a veto, Islamabad has successfully stalled India in the UN many a time, thanks to China. Israel has also defied as many as 46 anti-Israeli US resolutions.
If nothing, India should invoke its own Acharya Chanakya. Demonstrate power, for power alone begets power. That is why the Arab nations have seen through the weakness of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (CIC) and moved closer to Israel as realpolitik dictated.