Saturday, March 26, 2005



The worldviews of the G8 nations are vital, but they are still unknown.

In his 1994 book 'Diplomacy', Henry Kissinger wrote that at least three types of states are entitled to call themselves 'nations'. Firstly "the ethnic splinters from disintegrating empires. . . The goal of international order is beyond their fields of interest and frequently beyond their imaginations. . . they seek to preserve their independence and to increase their power without regard for the more cosmopolitan considerations of an international political order"; secondly "postcolonial nations . . .For many of them, the current borders represent the administrative convenience of the imperial powers . . . the state too often came to mean the army"; finally "the continental-type states - which will probably represent the basic units of the new world order."

Interestingly the former US secretary of state commented on the weakness of a previous attempt at a world order: "The failure to give the League of Nations a military enforcement mechanism underlined the problems inherent in [US President Wilson's] notion of collective security. . . As Hitler was to demonstrate, in the world of diplomacy, a loaded gun is often more potent than a legal brief."

Some see a UN army as essential. Meanwhile, there is a case for using an enforcement capacity written into in the Charter of the United Nations 60 years ago (ECOSOC); the failure to use this facility seems a key matter for debate.
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