Chapter Debate Results Submission Form: https://goo.gl/forms/1YlLUGiTknUgtRBq2
Resolved, that the United Nations does more harm than good
Brief: The United Nations was founded in the wake of the Second World War with the goal of establishing an international organization committed to using the principles of cooperation and diplomacy to seek peace, prosperity, and security around the world. The U.N is now comprised of 193 member states and 2 observers, who determine international policies through a General Assembly, Security Council, and various other councils, organizations, courts, and treaties. But critics argue that the U.N. has strayed away from its original mission and has actually become an impediment to progress on the world stage. Proponents of the United Nations say it is often used as a tool for the world’s governments to act with a unified voice, whether it be for sending aid to impoverished regions, condemning human rights atrocities, or promoting social causes like increased educational opportunities for women. However, detractors claim that the U.N. has allowed many atrocities to go unanswered, is politically biased, and is used to erode national sovereignty. With both a new U.N. Secretary-General and a recent place in the media spotlight after a controversial Security Council resolution condemning Israel, many have been assessing the pros and cons of the U.N.’s track record over the last 71 years. And now, many debate over if the UN has really done more harm or good. The question is, which do you believe?
● The United Nations’ repeated targeting of Israel showcases a complete double standard, with the General Assembly ending its 2016 legislative session by adopting 20 resolutions condemning Israel for human rights violations and only 4 for the rest of the world combined.
● The United Nations peacekeeping missions have come under fire for not only being ineffective at achieving peace in many conflicts, but also face allegations of gross misconduct including widespread perpetration and coverups of sexual assault by peacekeeping forces.
● The structure of the Security Council that grants permanent membership status and veto power to Russia and China often prevents U.N. action to stop atrocities perpetrated by those countries or their allies like Syria, Iran, and North Korea.
● The United Nations has prevented many conflicts by facilitating international agreements on issues like border disputes, maritime law, human rights, nuclear weapons, and war crimes. Without the United Nations it is very likely that there would be many more violent conflicts throughout the world.
● The United Nations does great work through its establishment of organization like UNESCO, WHO, IPCC, and UNGEI that respectively preserve cultural landmarks, promote global health, research climate change, and empower young girls through education, along with much more.
● The United Nations facilitates international cooperation to counteract aggression like that of Iraq in 1990, to impose sanctions on rogue states like North Korea for their nuclear program, and condemn human rights violations like those in South Africa during apartheid.
To learn more about the history, functions, and missions of the United Nations click here. For a source critical of the United Nations click here. For a source in support of the United Nations click here.