3Center or American Progress | Withdrawing rom the United Nations: A Misguided Assault
Tis means ha somehow Congress overlooked he ac ha a majoriy o
Americans—boh Democras and Republicans—agree ha oday’s world is deeply inerconneced and requires a shared approach o address common concerns.Te debae in Congress also ails o ake accoun o a long radiion o suppor or heUnied Naions rom boh paries. Even Jesse Helms, a deeply conservaive ormerRepublican senaor rom Norh Carolina, recognized he imporan role o he UniedNaions. In January 2000, Sen. Helms made a now amous speech beore he U.N. Securiy Council, which made i clear ha he waned America o lead efors o build a more efec-ive and ransparen Unied Naions—no wihdraw rom he enire insiuion.Similarly, Presiden Ronald Reagan said in a 1983 address o he U.N. General Assembly:
oday, at the beginning o this 38th Session, I solemnly pledge my nation to uphold-ing the original ideals o the United Nations. Our goals are those that guide this verybody. Our ends are the same as those o the U.N.’s ounders, who sought to replacea world at war with one where the rule o law would prevail, where human rightswere honored, where development would blossom, where conict would give way to feedom fom violence.
Republican and Democraic presidens alike have suppored he Unied Naions because i is in our direc naional ineres o do so.
Critics are oten quick to denigrate the United Nations as a coven o well-heeled diplomatssipping tea at U.N. headquarters in New York. That stereotype ignores the hard reality thatthe United Nations is a highly operational organization working on some o the most de-manding environments on earth and oten at great personal risk.We are increasingly seeing the United Nations undertake work in a range o politicalenvironments, which sometimes means taking on a tough role that directly impacts theirmission. Sometimes these countries are in the U.S. spotlight and sometimes they aren’t, butthey all pose signicant risk to U.N. staf. Consider that in just a two-week period in Marchand April 2011, the ollowing events occurred:
Seven U.N. staf members and guards were killed in Aghanistan by a mob protestingthe burning o a Koran in Florida.
A Swedish U.N. worker was shot and killed in the Ivory Coast.
A U.N. peacekeeper in Darur was slain ater being abducted by armed men.
A U.N. policeman in Haiti was killed while on patrol.
The crash o a U.N. aircrat carrying both U.N. staf and others in Congo killed 32 peopleon board.
In harm’s way