REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, By: Ikhwanul Kiram Manshuri
Do you want to know who the real ruler of the world? It's the five countries that are permanent members of the Security Council (UNSC) of the United Nations (UN). These five countries have virtually absolute authority to regulate the world, especially those related to international peace and security. The absolute authority is called 'right of veto' which only belongs to the United States, Russia, China, Britain, and France.
UNSC actually consists of 15 countries. However, the other ten are non-permanent members. The latter was chosen by every member of the United Nations General Assembly through the forum for two years period. They are selected alternately and representing various regions of the world. The ten members of the Security Council does not have a veto right.
In other words, ten non-permanent members is only a complementary. For example, when 14 members of the Security Council agree on one thing, say it a plan to issue a resolution demanding Israel to halt construction of Jewish settlements in the occupied territories. If there is a permanent Security Council member state does not agree, then the resolution is bound to fail. Imagine, the veto of a permanent member state could derail the agreement of 14 other members.
The initial goal of the establishment of the UN Security Council is very good indeed. It's a mechanism to prevent and stop the aggression by one state against another. Also in order to stop the behavior of any country that is considered to interfere with or endanger the peace and security of the world. That's why, under the UN Charter, Security Council constitute a huge authority. Among others, to investigate a country that is feared could threaten world peace, recommend dispute resolution procedure, ask all UN member states to sever economic ties, sea, air, postal, radio communication, and diplomatic relations. They are also entitled to terminate 'rogue states' by military means.
However, in today's development, the lofty goals of UNSC formation often deviated. it has become a sort of 'toys' for the interests of the five veto-wielding countries. Its assured every draft of resolution would be fail if not parallel to the interests of one of the permanent member of the Security Council. The five states were like thugs for the world.
Under such circumstances, may be an independent Palestinian state will not be realized as long as the five permanent members of the Security Council existed. See how U.S. President Barack Obama threatened Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas when the latter was persistently fighting for the right of his country as a permanent member of the UN. Obama said, the U.S. will veto the Palestinian move to bid for a permanent member of the UN. Obama's threat was delivered two years ago after the Palestinians accepted as UN non-member observer state.
Abbas wanted to improve the status of the Palestinian membership as a permanent member of the UN. Not merely an observer state. The effort was made after peace talks with Israel for many years, which is facilitated the U.S., did not produce any results. Palestinian conditions are worsening. By becoming a permanent member, it means the world will recognize Palestine as a sovereign independent state.
However, once again, with the threat of U.S. veto there was no much space that can be filled by President Abbas. To be a full member of UN it should be done through the UN Security Council. What happened next is Abbas and other Palestinian leaders were forced to follow the U.S. direction. That is to follow the Obama's draft of peace agreement. Obama's offer definitely is to defend the interests of Israel. As for the Zionist Israel, there is no such thing as free, especially for the Palestinian case.
Israel was willing to begin negotiations with pre-conditions, that is settlement construction in the occupied territories cannot be contested. It means, along with the negotiation process, at the same time Israel is getting stronger to grip the colony. So, what can be produced from a one-sided negotiation? Moreover the talk is observed by a country which has always vetoed any resolution against Israeli violations?
Not just the U.S. that often uses the veto; permanent members were also doing the same thing. Russia and China, for example, has used its veto against a draft resolution condemning the Syrian regime crackdown on anti-government protests. Both countries also oppose demands calling for President Bashar Assad to step down.
In other words, the veto has become a tool of power and the struggle for influence of the five permanent members of the Security Council. Borrowing the words of President Sukarno when deciding to pull out Indonesia from the United Nation membership in 1965; the international institution was just a tool for capitalists and imperialists to rule the world.
We're certainly not calling for Indonesia to pull out of the United Nations membership. Our concern is how the UN can effectively create world peace and security. If North Korea was punished because it has nuclear weapons and Iran were sanctioned because of fear it would develop the same weapons, then Israel should be severely punished because they were clearly already has nuclear weapons. Not only that, Israel has also repeatedly ignored a UN resolution demanding that it should withdraw from the occupation and not to build Jewish settlements in the occupied territories. However, once again, Israel has never been sanctioned by the UN.
Indonesia and other countries like Saudi Arabia are also angry at the United Nations, which should be able to do much to change and reform itself and its organs. Especially, to reform the permanent membership of the United Nations that had been monopolized by only five countries. For example, [this reformation should be driven]through the non-aligned organization, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, ASEAN, and other international forums.
Ed: M Irwan Ariefyanto