UN Security Council.
September 23, 2003 6:41 AM   Subscribe

Does India belong on the UN security council? A fascinating analysis of UN politics from a developing country's perspective.
posted by SandeepKrishnamurthy (15 comments total)
Yes, but then I am biased.
posted by riffola at 7:37 AM on September 23, 2003

Tell them to boot the BJP first.
posted by goethean at 7:40 AM on September 23, 2003

first we should boot the Christian Right from the White House.
posted by rks404 at 7:47 AM on September 23, 2003

India does not belong...keep democracies off all things in the UN, and let the rest of the non-democracies run things.
posted by Postroad at 8:04 AM on September 23, 2003

With Japan, Germany, Brazil, Mexico, South Africa, Egypt and Indonesia, perhaps. Anyway, India is a bellicose State with little upward mobility among its classes, so I don't think it is the best Third World representative there is. If only one Developing Country were to enter the Security Council, I'd certainly not vote for India.
posted by 111 at 8:22 AM on September 23, 2003

The BJP makes the Christian Right look like the Boy Scouts.
posted by goethean at 9:47 AM on September 23, 2003

I don't think that this article really makes a strong case for India being on the UNSC, more that the permanent five structure ought to be reshuffled. I don't really see how this could possibly happen. I am not a UN expert, but such a change would probably have to have the blessing of the P-5 to work, and the odds of that happening are, well, not good.

Anyway, the really interesting thrust of this article is about the hypocrisy of the NPT; for those who aren't aware, the NPT doesn't just call for an end to horizontal proliferation (that is, for non-nuclear signatories to not obtain nuclear weapons) but it also calls on the nuclear powers to disarm. The hypocrisy pointed out is that the US and the other nuclear powers have always tried hard to push the former policy without paying any attention to the latter. Credibility for the UN and the NPT and other international security regimes requires that the powers that be enforce existing agreements even handedly and that the developing countries view those security regimes as credible.

While the Security Council remains in post-WWII / Cold War format and resistant to any realignment, the danger is that the eroding credibility eventually just goes completely away and that the UN loses any relevance as a security organization. I personally think that US policy of ignoring the UN when it doesn't agree with our foreign policy is only accelerating that trend. Yet another ~unintended~ consequence of our misadventure in Iraq.
posted by norm at 9:53 AM on September 23, 2003

India is a bellicose State
Unlike certain countries we know, India has never in it's entire history initiated a war. Any war it's been involved in was defense. If that's what you mean by bellicose, I wonder what you think about countries attacking other countries that lie halfway across the planet and do not really possess a threat.
posted by riffola at 2:41 PM on September 23, 2003

riffola, wake me up when India signs a peace treaty with Pakistan and solves its internal caste/religious conflicts.
posted by 111 at 3:04 PM on September 23, 2003

myancestorscountryrightorwrong much, riffola?

I vote for Brazil - it's played a much more unequivocally positive role in leading the charge for affordable HIV/AIDS medications and development-friendly trade rules.

As for you, 666, wake me up when the U.S. stops behaving like a bull in a china shop, and solves its internal class/religious conflicts.
posted by stonerose at 3:14 PM on September 23, 2003

stonerose, you ladies wouldn't understand why the USA acts like it does. If it weren't for the USA, there would be no United Nations and perhaps no nations as such. There is a nightmarish plead for international equality which is not only naive, but destructive.
The fable of Antisthenes:

"The hares harangued the assembly, and argued that all should be equal. The Lions made this reply: 'Your words, O Hares! Are good; but they lack both claws and teeth such as we have.' " (Aesop's version)
posted by 111 at 3:56 PM on September 23, 2003

If it weren't for the USA, there would be no United Nations and perhaps no nations as such.

Including the USA? Back under the bridge with you.
posted by riviera at 4:40 PM on September 23, 2003

0.111, I'm a man. A man with a couple of degrees in international relations, a strong background in the history of the U.N., and a job as a global health analyst. I'm also a man who takes offense at the implication that weakness = femininity, and that calling people "ladies" is an appropriate way of expressing that disgusting implication.

Anyway... I didn't see myself arguing for equality among states (nations are a different concept, sweetie) or equality of results (as opposed to opportunity) within states. Now, did you have a point?
posted by stonerose at 5:22 PM on September 23, 2003

The BJP makes the Christian Right look like the Boy Scouts. umm.... yeah Maybe I'm confused cuz I was only a Cub Scout. Shit, think of all the fun I missed out on.

I do think Inida should weigh a lot heavier, along with others, in the UN, though. Brazil, for one.
posted by superchris at 7:16 PM on September 23, 2003

The UN Security Council is not made up of morally exemplary Western-style democracies - if so, China and Russia would not be included and the United States would be replaced by Canada. Like the flap that occurred when Syria had a temporary membership, part of the qualification for Security Council membership is regional representation. South Asia is growing into an increasingly important part of the balance of power in Asia and the world and India is the major player in that region.

I do find the criticisms of India to be fairly interesting. Yes - India's hands are bloody but it is also a democracy with a number of protections for it's ethnic and religious minorities. Other nations in that part of the world are also struggling with the same problems.
posted by rks404 at 11:12 PM on September 23, 2003

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