Tags: Clinton | U.N. | Trial | Balloon

Clinton U.N. Trial Balloon

Tuesday, 26 October 2004 12:00 AM

In one or the other revelations about the late President Richard Nixon, it was made known what utter contempt he had for the Secretary General U Thant, third Secretary General of the United Nations (serving from 1961-1971).

Whenever I hear Kofi Annan lecturing America about the rule of law, I about roll over in laughter. You must be kidding. This character who has presided over the ’s Oil for Food Program, which enabled Saddam Hussein to revive weapons programs and bribe other nations so they would vote against us at the U.N. (and in the process make several U.N. officials, including perhaps Annan himself, filthy rich), should lecture us on the rule of law? What a joke.

I’ve been happy that the Secretaries General of the U.N. were always objectionable people. Candidates used to get the stamp of approval from the Soviet Union before being put forward. Anybody who was okay with the thugs who ran the Soviet State was not going to be of use to this country.

But since 1992, there has been no Soviet Union and Russia has been far less of a problem for us. Now the Secretary General must have the approval of all sorts of third-world countries whose economies and governments are a shambles but who want to piously lecture this country.

If Kofi Annan tried to run for office in this country I’d be shocked if he got more than 10% of the vote. I know many Blacks, for example, who are as repulsed by him as I am.

So where would be his base, besides the newsroom of The New York Times? However, with Clinton as Secretary General, we would have an entirely different dynamic.

I am afraid Clinton would be taken seriously. He is still very popular in this country, largely because he is associated with the good times of the 1990s (the good times that Alan Greenspan warned were the “overly exuberant”).

Calvin Coolidge knew just when to quit. His successor, Hebert Hoover, is known for the Great Depression. Indeed Grace Coolidge, when asked why her husband didn’t run for another term in 1928, said, “Papa thinks there is a depression coming.”

Bill Clinton would have liked to run for a third term. He said so. But, alas, the Constitution would not permit it. He was lucky. A recession began right at the end of his term but hardly anyone noticed.

Had he been in office it would be he, not George W. Bush, dealing with a post 9/11 world. So Clinton got out of town just in time to preserve his reputation, such as it was.

Having that sort of beloved figure as head of the UN troubles me. What if it were Bill Clinton lecturing us about the rule of law? That would be quite different than Kofi Annan.

A U.N. Secretary General cannot be elected without U.S. support. We usually can’t put forth candidates but we can veto, and have vetoed, candidates.

Would a President Kerry support Clinton for the post if asked? Could he deny Clinton support? Probably not, especially with Hillary in the U.S. Senate. However, would he want a popular figure second-guessing him on foreign policy? Perhaps Kerry and Clinton would be in lockstep in their foreign policy but maybe not.

Kerry is much more of a pacifist than is Clinton. Clinton might engineer a U.N./NATO operation which he did in Bosnia without the help or permission of the U.N. Kerry might well be opposed to that idea.

Although Kerry is a very divisive figure, if he does get elected, there will be a strong minority, including many veterans, who would be opposed to his policies. With Clinton much has been forgotten and forgiven. Clinton might well have the upper hand under these circumstances.

Perhaps Kerry would want to appear to support Clinton while working behind the scenes against him. There is a lot of room for conjecture.

What about President Bush? Would he back Clinton for that post if he wins a second term? It is not out of the question. You may think that an impossibility. After all, Bush ran in 2000 in many ways as the anti-Clinton.

Bush has had a scandal-free Administration compared with Clinton, who seemed to have one sort of scandal or another every month or so of his Administration.

Why would Bush want to back somebody like that? Precisely because it would tie up an otherwise popular politician who would be nipping at his heels during a second term, preparing the way for Hillary to take over.

The role of an unencumbered Clinton would be to criticize Bush at every turn so that by the time 2008 rolls around the people would be saying “lets get rid of those awful Republicans.” Then Hillary runs and gets the Democratic nomination.

Republicans nominate someone, possibly Majority Leader Bill Frist, for example.

Frist would be required to defend the second Bush Administration, which may or may not be controversial, while at the same time not offending those people who still defended Bush.

In 2006, by the way, the Democrats almost certainly would win control of the Congress and as soon as they took power they would start all sorts of investigations of the Bush Administration.

You see, if Bush backed Clinton, he at least would be in a position where he could do less harm. To a certain extent, Bush could co-opt Clinton and force him to support American positions by putting on a good PR campaign for a foreign policy position in this country.

The problem with giving Clinton this kind of power, he is liable to think that world government has finally come to pass and he is the world leader for whom everyone has been waiting.

A Bill Clinton might finally be able to ram through some international tax.

The U.N. has had its eye on the few prosperous parts of the world for a dedicated source of revenue. So far, no U.N. Secretary General has been able to come anywhere remotely close to accomplishing that terrible idea.

Bill Clinton would be the guy to do it.

The last thing we want is a U.N. that is anywhere viewed as effective. Right now the U.N. is seen as a useless body whose resolutions mean nothing and whose commitment to freedom and democracy is non-existent.

There is no way Clinton could turn the U.N. into an instrument for liberty. But he might be able to “sell” the U.N. as something Americans ought to take seriously.

World government is something I have apposed since I got active in the policy process. Seeing how the U.N. has functioned in this era, I began to believe that these fears are unfounded. However, with Bill Clinton doing the bidding, I’m not sure.

The more I think of this, the worse idea I think it is. Either a President Kerry or President Bush ought to reject such an idea in his own interest. They might create a monster that they could not control.


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In one or the other revelations about the late President Richard Nixon, it was made known what utter contempt he had for the Secretary General U Thant, third Secretary General of the United Nations (serving from 1961-1971). Whenever I hear Kofi Annan lecturing America...
Tuesday, 26 October 2004 12:00 AM
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