Is the United Nations still a force for good in the world? It’s a question doesn’t come up much in Canada, owing to this country’s weird habit of investing blue helmets with the totemic power of fetish objects. But as we head into 2016, with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau having given every impression that Canada’s foreign policy exertions will be substantially redirected through the UN, it’s a question well worth asking.
Looking at just a few of the UN’s most recent “achievements,” it’s hard to answer in the affirmative. The Syrian catastrophe is just one of the UN’s most spectacular ongoing failures, and not just in terms of the scale of the horror. It’s in the UN’s abysmal dereliction of every responsibility the creaking institution’s many Liberal champions rely upon to justify the placement of junior Canadian diplomats throughout the UN’s comfortable salons and nearly innumerable talking shops.