The World Summit on Sustainable Development,
aka "Earth Summit II," will start soon in Johannesburg, ten years after the Rio Earth Summit
. Have things improved at all in the last ten years?
While there are some reasons to be optimistic
, the data isn't cheerful. Our climate is growing unstable
; tens of millions are dying or likely to die
, and hundreds of millions more likely to be made refugees, because of environmental pollution and degraded ecosystems; and half the plants and animals on the planet seem headed for extinction
over the next century. In short, things are grim.
What steps, big or small, are you taking to do your part for the environment?
posted by AlexSteffen
on Aug 17, 2002 -
has a story about a preliminary UN report claiming there could have been a cover-up regarding the "wedding-party airstrike" earlier this month. Reuters/Yahoo also has the story
but it's not getting much coverage in US media. This blog
claims the story is front page material in a few european countries. The US military denies
any cover up.
posted by rhyax
on Jul 29, 2002 -
Gore questions timing of Iraq concern
Is it proper to invade Iraq? This would be an unprecedented move for the US military as Iraq has not attacked the US anyone the US has defense treaties with.
"Republican National Committee spokesman Jim Dyke called Gore's comments "irresponsible."
"This is no time to attack the president or Republicans for their handling of the war for political gain," he said."
Hmmm..so he admits the Iraqi attack IS for partisan political gain, eh? I would have never suspected it.
posted by nofundy
on Jul 26, 2002 -
The UN Atlas of the Oceans
provides information on a wide range of topics relating to the world's oceans, such as geography, economic uses and environmental issues (here's a BBC article
about the atlas.)
Another nice site about the oceans is the Blue Planet
web companion to the gorgeous Discovery/BBC TV series of the same name. Sadly, the threat to coral reefs
may soon rob the oceans of some of their more spectacular biological diversity.
posted by homunculus
on Jun 25, 2002 -
Tired of the intrusiveness of the Federal Government?
Hate the United Nations? Grant County welcomes you! About the size of Connecticut with a population of 7,500, this rural Oregon County recently passed ballot measures banning the UN and allowing people to cut trees on federal land, with or without the U.S. Forest Service approval. Government agencies are engaged in something called "Rural Cleansing"
according to WSJ reporter Kimberley A. Strassel, and the people are having some success standing up to the government. Are these people kooks? Is Civil disobedience wrong? Are you in, out, or straddling the fence? Ready to move?
posted by Mack Twain
on Jun 4, 2002 -
Anti-Idiotarian Coalition/United Blogging Nation?
It seems all this talk of UN bias has has some bloggers so frustrated and angry that they feel it's time to band together as a political force, and the beginnings of a movement are taking shape
. Legal actions, media attention, and even a full fledged political party are all ideas that have been bandied about. They already have a couple of legal eagles and prominent blogging figures
offering services/resources. All they need now are t-shirts.
Oh wait, they have those
too. One Nation, under Blog...
posted by mikhail
on May 2, 2002 -
The United Nations: Non partisan independant arbiter of international matters or hyper-politicized arena? You make the call
posted by BentPenguin
on May 1, 2002 -
Israel refuses the UN factfinding mission
, as if anyone ever had any doubts about a government that has consistently refused any third party monitoring, fact finding, or international observers, in any aspect of the conflict with its Palestinian neighbors. In doing so, Ariel Sharon's government yells out once more its disdain for international public opinion
, and kicks yet another attempt at establishing an impartial view of the situation in the balls. If Israel acted in rightful self-defence in Jenin, then a UN fact finding mission could only confirm this state of affairs, now couldn't it? How long will we all stand by and watch this happen over and over again? Can we be critical of Israel without being labelled anti-semitic
? Does the Holocaust provide permanent immunity from compliance with international law to the state of Israel? If as a white Christian I feel anger and frustration, what should my muslim brothers in other parts of the world feel? Am I surprised that some of them resort to dispicable means to make their point?
posted by coyroy
on Apr 28, 2002 -
'Cambridge Students Beaten by Israeli Army'
Three of my fellow students spent their Easter vacation on the West Bank as unofficial international observers. In the course of accompanying Palestinian medics to a refugee camp, with medical supplies and food, they were allegedly stopped and beaten by Israeli troops.
While their actions are undoubtedly noble and brave ("we are doing the job the UN should be doing"), the Israeli embassy suggests that "whilst the intentions were geniune, (their) actions have been misguided."
I can't decide what to think. (more inside)
posted by chrismear
on Apr 27, 2002 -
"horrific beyond belief"
says United Nations envoy. Strong stuff from the BBC this time. Personally I suspect Jenin may end up being a turning point, i just wish I knew towards what.
posted by Leonard
on Apr 18, 2002 -
The US dedication to blocking peace.
“It was the second time in less than a year that the United States had used its veto power to effectively kill a resolution that would create a monitoring mechanism for the protection of Palestinian civilians.”
posted by raaka
on Dec 15, 2001 -
UN warning over plundered Earth EARTH is being plundered at an unprecedented and unsustainable rate which needs to be curbed quickly to avoid disaster, the United Nations says.
Will the conflicts of the 21st century be based around the control of water, the needs of food production and economic inequality? Maybe it's time to consider these issues. We can't totally blame the poor and weak for their own circumstances.
posted by skinsuit
on Nov 7, 2001 -
Nine days talking about it, walkouts from the USA and Israel, and the UN finally comes up with a document which takes the daring step of saying that... Racism is bad, m'kay?
posted by darukaru
on Sep 8, 2001 -
What's going on America?!?
Influential Republicans and Democrats in the House have threatened to hold back $244 million in dues to the United Nations if the United States does not recover a seat on the Human Rights Commission next year.
posted by twistedonion
on May 10, 2001 -
, the United States lost its seat on the U.N. Human Rights Commission.
The U.S. has been voted out of something again, losing its seat
on the International Narcotics Control Board, a worldwide body which monitors drugs manufacture and illicit drugs trading.
posted by lia
on May 8, 2001 -
Sanctions Born Of Indifference
The United Nations' sanctions against Iraq - which would have been lifted long ago, if not for America - have been killing 4,500 children a month for nearly 10 years now. A million people in all so far, half of them kids.
The Iraqis die because America insists the sanctions continue - despite their illegality under the principles of the Nuremberg war crimes tribunal, the United Nations Convention Against Genocide Convention and particularly the Geneva Convention: (Protocol 1 Additional to the Geneva Conventions - 1977 Part IV, Section 1, Chapter III, Article 54)
1. Starvation of civilians as a method of warfare is prohibited.
2. It is prohibited to attack, destroy, remove, or render useless objects indispensable to the agricultural areas for the production of foodstuffs, crops, livestock, drinking water installations and supplies, and irrigation works, for the specific purpose of denying them for their sustenance value to the civilian population or to the adverse party, whatever the motive, whether in order to starve out civilians, to cause them to move away, or for any other motive.
posted by lagado
on Oct 25, 2000 -
a newly released u.n. population study
suggests that because the birth rates in wealthy countries is low and declining, the worker-retired ratio will not be able to support current social programs. "The report found that Japan would need 10 million immigrants every year for the next 50 years to maintain the current working-age to retirement-age ratio. Without migration, figures show it would be necessary to raise the retirement age to 77 to maintain the ratio."
posted by palegirl
on Mar 21, 2000 -