Monday, August 22, 2005

We Can Modernize the Security Council

Japan is continuing to push for a UN permanent Security Council seat:

Japan's drive to gain a permanent seat on the UN Security Council is still alive, a Japanese UN delegate said, dismissing press reports that Tokyo planned to give up its bid for the time being after failing to win enough backing.

Right now Japan is wedded to India, Germany, and Brazil to all go through together:

The G4 proposal calls for increasing council membership from 15 to 25, with six new permanent seats without veto power --- one each for Brazil, Germany, India and Japan and two for the African region, and four non-permanent seats.

I don't remember how different this is from the UN proposal off hand but they seem pretty similar from memory.

The alternative plans to modernize the UN Security Council are ridiculous and just expand the council with states that barely deserve to have a UN General Assembly seat. Brazil? Get real. Any state in Africa? What a howler. Germany? If they ever get a clue and step up to accept the responsibilities of power before they get the key to the executive wash room, sure. But Berlin is an international joke right now.

Face it, exactly two countries deserve a permanent seat: Japan and India.

I've mentioned it before but I think we should give Japan a veto by proxy. We can do it for India, too.

What would we lose? If they officially had the veto they could veto items regardless of our stance. So officially commit to exercising our veto if they want to use it. Being an unofficial reform it avoids the monstrosity of the official reform plan or the G4 proposal that tries to buy Third World acceptance. Besides, I find it hard to believe China would allow India or Japan to get a veto seat.

Nor do I think we should create a League of Democracies or any such thing. Democracies vote against us and a L of D would have moral authority that the UN lacks. I like being able to ignore the UN's den of thieves. Could we do the same with democracies voting against us?

We're big enough to spread our veto around. I hope we're smart enough not to let the UN reform itself or let any plan be influenced by the need to buy off countries that shouldn't even dream of permanent status.

Proxy veto for our friends. I still like the idea. And if John Bolton pushes it through, it will just make it sweeter.