|Seriously, this is the man besting Obama.|
Some people use ideals to come as close as possible to realizing it, while others simply delude themselves and ignore reality. I've said this before: most people cannot emotionally handle the fact that this world is an incredibly shitty place. So in order to reduce their own personal distress about the sad state of humanity, they ignore reality and instead focus on the symptoms rather than the causes.
Enter President Obama and the Hopium Trade. The president addressed the United Nations General Assembly today, and he talked about how international law must be enforced or else it will become a joke. News flash, Mr. President: It's already a joke. In his address, Obama skirts 3 big problems that undermine international law.
Thing 1: Technically, international law only applies to nations who agree to the laws themselves.
America has used this against the UN in the past, upholding certain ideas of international law while categorically rejecting others. We were not actually supposed to invade Iraq in 2003 because the UNSC told us we couldn't. Look how well that turned out. Just as well, North Korea continues to thwart international law banning them from pursuing nuclear weapons. Assad has shown that he clearly could not give a single shit, let alone two shits, about the international ban on the use of chemical weapons.
Of course, the offending nation always defends itself with the notion of sovereignty, regardless of how barbaric their actions may be. And so long as nations are allowed to use sovereignty to justify gross violations of human rights, international law will continue to be meaningless.
Thing 2: International law is arbitrarily enforced.
This sort of goes hand-in-hand with Thing 1. The world did not step in to stop Apartheid, yet the US was chomping at the bit to put an end to Saddam Hussein's reign of terror. Obama ignored congressional disapproval of getting involved in Libya and helped topple Gadhaffi, but no one will touch North Korea with a 100 foot pole. Sure, Gadhaffi was both brutal and insane, but the situation in North Korea is truly hellish. If you don't believe that, then just google search North Korea's idea of "Three Generations of Punishment."
Until international law is applied evenly in every case of severe human rights violations, it will contiue to be a joke.
Thing 3: The UN Security Council is nothing but an international stage for major world leaders to undermine each other.
Mr. President: if you want international law to mean something, then why don't you bring up the fact that the UNSC veto essentially ruins everything? Yes, there needs to be a voice of reason, but when that "voice of reason," is the likes of China and Vladimir Putin, the process needs to be examined. Essentially, the members of the UNSC have the power to stop the UN from doing anything, at any time, for any reason, regardless of the magnitude of the violation.
Putin doesn't care about things like "human rights." Hell, one can argue that he doesn't even truly care about Russia. All he cares about is continuing his reign as the unofficial king of Russia, and as of late he will do anything to undermine the US.
So if the president truly wishes for the UN to improve, then he needs to call a spade a spade, and he needs to drop the delusion that international law can function in its current form. His address was just more talk of "hope and change," and we all know how far those promises go.