Global Governance and the US Under UN Law?
U.S. National Security Strategy Promotes American AcceptionalismSECURITY, HOMELAND SECURITY & TERRORISM
by Jim Kelly
Wednesday, June 2, 2010
If President Barack Obama's National Security Strategy (the "NSS") is any indication, American exceptionalism is an outdated theory. Instead, America must accept a new international order where, instead of free and hard-working Americans deciding how to use their excess wealth for their benefit, the benefit of their fellow Americans, and the benefit of other nations, Americans will work hard to support failing social welfare programs domestically and abroad and to finance the "clean" growth of developing countries so that wealth imbalances among nations can be eliminated. Under the NSS, America's guiding principles are transformed from life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness to work, redistribution, and the pursuit of balance.
On May 27, 2010, the Obama Administration released the NSS, which is published every four years during the second year of each presidential administration. In the introduction of the NSS, President Obama explains that Americans live in a moment of transition attributable to the challenges of globalization. He refers to America's need to "strengthen international standards and institutions," to seek an "international order," and to "strengthen international norms." In his view, this new international order can resolve the challenges of our times, including, but not limited to, "combating a changing climate and sustaining global growth; helping countries feed themselves and care for their sick; resolving and preventing conflict, while also healing its wounds." This utopian ambition is the result of a Babel Impulse that seems capable of transforming what should be a serious examination of a few essential elements of a national security agenda into a wide-ranging program for the pursuit of liberal internationalism.
human security, not national security, should be the focal point of the new international order, with special emphasis on preventing or providing relief from the effects of climate change, pandemic and infectious disease, transnational crime, and humanitarian crises. Special mention is also made of the need for "safeguarding the global commons," which requires America to "work in concert with allies and partners to optimize the use of shared sea, air, and space domains."
Because the Obama Administration is placing all its bets on U.N. management of the new international order, the NSS explains that "we are working with U.N. personnel and member states to strengthen the U.N.'s leadership and operational capacity in peacekeeping, humanitarian relief, post-disaster recovery, development assistance, and the promotion of human rights." Unfortunately, the NSS does not indicate by what authority the Obama Administration is vesting so much responsibility in the U.N., an organization with a dismal record of transparency and accountability. But not to worry, the NSS assures us that "we support reforms that promote effective and efficient leadership and management of the U.N.'s international civil service
Speaking of reforms, because, absent a renewed economy, the U.S. cannot play a leadership role in the new international order, the NSS views U.S. education, health care, and energy reforms as foundational to America's participation in the new international order.
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