Will it Be NATO or the UN

Saul Landau


1945, the UN was established to help bring the world community to peace.. NATO

was invented four years later to defend against a supposed Soviet threat to

conquer Western Europe. NATO has outlived the Soviet Union, but its leaders

didn’t dissolve their outmoded structure after it lacked a raison d’etre.

Instead, they redesigned and expanded it. They soon found a new purpose:

humanitarian bombing — against Yugoslavia. But NATO commanders didn’t arrange

to protect the Kosovar Albanians before they began bombing. Indeed, as bombs

dropped outraged Serb forces retaliated by accelerating their assault against

ethnic Albanians. Although wrapped in altruism, the bombs still caused death and

destruction. NATO said it didn’t want an independent Kosovo. But with the Serb

military gone, NATO facilitated the Kosovo Liberation Army’s virtual take over

of police power. NATO then permitted their thugs to cleanse the Serb minority

from the area. NATO forces still stand as their line of defense against



nations also supported the UN mandated independence referendum in East Timor.

But Indonesia army thugs responded to that vote with violence. They had not

learned the lesson that NATO would punish gross human rights violations? Or did

humanitarian impulses over Serb brutality in Kosovo turn to hand wringing in

East Timor? East Timor and Kosovo: two cases of secession where government

forces persecuted a majority population. NATO under humanitarian guise handed

Kosovo to the KLA. But when its Indonesian military pals brutalized East

Timorese after their independence vote, NATO leaders wrung their hands.


US and allies ignored Indonesian atrocities in East Timor since the mid 1970s,

or actually approved of Indonesia annexing East Timor in 1975. Now they

implicitly blame UN weakness for the failure of Indonesia to abide by the UN

supervised vote. Meanwhile NATO ministers meeting in Toronto argue they need

ever greater military budgets to carry out Kosovo-style operations.


Annan criticized humanitarian interventions by regional military organizations

against UN wishes, because it undermines world law and thus order. Formerly

colonized people have scant trust for "humanitarian-minded" imperial

states whose leaders have not shown zeal in relaxing their aggressive pursuit of

corporate profits and access to resources. In the next Century will the world’s

publics trust a defense alliance without enemies and therefore without mission

— outside of its own reproduction — or the UN, the legitimate global

organization , which the United States has purposefully weakened. US policy will

ignore the UN — except when it becomes convenient to cover for US intervention.

Yes. Dissolve NATO! Strengthen the UN and democratize its Security Council!

Anyone listening?


Landau is the Hugh O. LaBounty Chair of Interdisciplinary Applied Knowledge at

California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, 3801 W. Temple Ave. Pomona, CA

91768 tel – 909-869-3115 fax – 909-869-4751



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