UN REFORM

The Hindu News reports

The US has proposed barring UN Security Council membership to countries that threaten their neighbours and support terrorism, a development that is expected to be widely welcomed in India.

As part of a seven-point UN reform package, Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs K R Holmeshas said: “A regime that threatens its neighbours, supports terrorism and abuses the rights of its citizens should be ineligible for Security Council membership.”

The proposal is bound to play well with India, which has accused Pakistan of sponsoring and supporting terrorist activity in Kashmir.

Citing Japan’s contribution in world affairs, Holmeshas also proposed that Japan be made a permanent member of the Security Council.

He said Japan’s budget assessment was 20,000 times greater than the lowest assessment, which was paid by over 40 nations. Yet, Japan does not have a seat on the UNSC.

While the ban on “bad” countries from sitting on the Security Council as non-permanent members is, on its face, a rather obvious improvement, it is impractical. As a commenter on Dean’s World notes, various states accuse others of “terrorism” and the like on a regular basis. Israel would certainly be ineligible under such a rule given votes in the UN General Assembly over the past several decades. Indeed, it’s not inconceivable that the US would be excluded if a majority vote were taken on the issue–and we didn’t already have a Permanent seat.

Japan–and Germany and India, for that matter–should almost certainly be on the Security Council given their wealth, size, and/or regional power. But this is a Pandora’s box that should remain closed. Once the discussion is open, many more countries than should be members will want to be members and much bitterness will ensue. And, of course, adding more countries with veto power will just make the Security Council even more impotent.

(Hat tips: Angry Left and Dean Esmay)

FILED UNDER: US Politics
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.