05/27/04 — U.N. role: Bringing closure to Iraq’s agony

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U.N. role: Bringing closure to Iraq’s agony

President George Bush has offered the United Nations an opportunity to get involved in bringing peace to Iraq.

In his address this week, the president asked the U.N. to help the United States and other coalition members in convening a “national conference” to select a “Consultative Council” that would prepare for electing an Iraqi governing body.

It also would be involved in promoting national dialogue and consensus-building on drafting a national constitution.

The United Nations is invited to advise the Iraqis on reconstruction, development, humanitarian assistance, human rights and judicial and legal reform.

These certainly appear to be involvements for which the United Nations should be well-suited.

At this juncture, the track record of the U.N. in addressing issues of war and peace and human rights — and in protecting the masses in dictator-controlled rogue nations from virtual genocide — has been dismal.

President Bush is offering the United Nations an opportunity to have a significant role in bringing a semblance of closure to a difficult but evolving period in the turbulent history of the Iraqi people. Thanks to the U.S.-led coalition and our brave troops, Saddam Hussein has been deposed and most of his henchmen have been either killed or jailed.

Despite factional acts of terror, progress is being made toward stability in most parts of the country. But no final resolution can be accomplished until Iraq is governed by Iraqis.

If the United Nations cannot involve itself in efforts to achieve this, it cannot justify its existence.

Published in Editorials on May 27, 2004 10:58 AM