United Nations Day, October 24th 2014

By Paul Robinson - 23 Oct 2014 20:35:0 GMT
United Nations Day, October 24th 2014

To some, the climate change involvement of the UN is of prime importance. We are ready to admit that peace-keeping, international development and food and agricultural aid can often be just as important. How the UN manages these multifarious tasks is beyond belief. The organisers must be superhuman to overcome the prejudice, aggression and sheer ignorance they encounter; Image Credit: © United Nations Organisation

Its United Nations Day again, with a heavy year completed, going by the recent NYC Climate Conference and many medical emergencies, food crises, wars and skirmishes restricted, or at least being worked on. The life of the international organisation has always seemed ready to repeat the short life of the League of Nations. No country is ever ready to support the multiple functions that the UN is forced into, yet the cry for help is ever there.

Ban Ki-moon’s take on the upcoming year is that, “"the United Nations is needed more than ever at this time of multiple crises. [...] At this critical moment, let us reaffirm our commitment to empowering the marginalized and vulnerable. On United Nations Day, I call on Governments and individuals to work in common cause for the common good.” They react by working away, but then disagreeing on separate topics unrelated to the common cause they had originally.

1945 saw the joyful celebration of the end of massive conflict. The UN Charter was never ratified universally in 1948, but basically everybody signed up with a feeling of relief. With the 70th anniversary coming up, the Security Council and the members seem to be getting along fine, if disagreeing at every opportunity.

It is also World Development Information Day today, sort of jumping on the coat tails of UN Day. This lesser known celebration began in 1972 to strengthen public attitudes to international cooperation for development problems. It really has worked in those countries who have helped a lot. Those who have been helped include many African countries, but as we all know, the droughts and famines create giant problems still. Several ex-colonial powers have links to developing countries but some others neglect their responsibilities towards those less blessed than themselves. Perhaps we all need to take a look at the proportion of Gross National Product your country gives to international development.

Good luck to the splendid 69-year-old UN and long may it reign. Consider what would have happened in that time without such a body governing all of this aid and coercing a rapid reaction, whether with skilled practitioners, armed forces or medication.