Chinese Ambassador to the United Nations Wang Yingfan leaves
the Security Council in New York. The U.S. demand for speedy U.N. action on Iraq
has run into strong opposition from Russia, France and China, who want
Washington to change a draft resolution and eliminate any license for the United
States to attack Baghdad on its own. AFP photo...
Bush is losing momentum on his attack Iraq resolution
It is encouraging how the U N is slowing down little George's
war rhetoric. I think we can safely take a breath and have faith that the
world is going to insert some sanity into the Iraq problem.
It is good to know that the world is throttling back little
George and showing him that there is a limit to his power.
It is good to know that the U N is being deliberate in
considering how to deal with Saddam. When the world is considering the
destabilization of a significant region of the world, it is good to be
deliberate and understand that there are precedents that will be set with
whatever action the U N eventually takes.
The entire world is focused on the Iraq problem and when the U
N acts there should be an overall feeling that whatever is to be done will be
done after serious deliberation. The world will issue its eventual
resolution with the assurance that it has acted only after thoroughly
considering all the possible scenarios.
For a time, I thought that little George was actually going to
single handedly begin a world war. Now, with time, the nations of the
world have inserted some clear thinking into resolving the Iraq problem.
How can it ever be a bad thing when the whole world gathers and discusses a
We have to acknowledge that whatever happens in Iraq, the
nations of the world will increase the peace as they begin to define and refine
how the process of all inclusive debate will lead to intelligently and
deliberately dealing with rogue nations who would create chaos and death in the
October 31, 2002
UN Members Oppose Speedy Iraq Action
The Associated Press, Thu 31 Oct 2002
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.S. demand for speedy U.N. action on Iraq has
run into strong opposition from Russia, France and China, who want
Washington to change a draft resolution and eliminate any license for the
United States to attack Baghdad on its own.
The three veto-holding Security Council members want to ensure that Iraq
is given a chance to cooperate with U.N. weapons inspectors before any
military action is authorized — and they're now waiting to see what the
United States and Britain are going to do to address their concerns.
After a third meeting council session Wednesday on the U.S. proposal,
Russia's deputy U.N. ambassador Gennady Gatilov said Moscow still has
``quite a number of problems'' with the U.S. draft, centered on the
automatic authorization to use force.
The opposition has stymied the Bush administration's hopes to quickly push
a resolution through the world body. In Washington, Secretary of State
Colin Powell said debate would likely be concluded toward the end of next
The Security Council only got the U.S. draft on Oct. 23 and the three
sessions since then gave all 15 members the opportunity to go over it line
by line and suggest changes.
U.S. and British diplomats said the views of the council will now be
studied carefully, ministers will continue talking, and there will be a
response — but when it will come and whether it will meet Russian,
French and Chinese demands remains to be seen.
``Don't expect any immediate action,'' said Britain's U.N. Ambassador
Jeremy Greenstock. ``There is going to be no precipitate rush to a
China's Ambassador Wang Yingfan said he expected the United States and
Britiain to come back with revisions.
``I don't know what kind of progress in the end we'll have,'' he said.
France's U.N. Ambassador Jean-David Levitte said everyone knows Paris'
position, but ``frankly we don't know where the U.S. is'' now on the issue
of authorizing force.
The U.S. and British consultations on possible changes to the U.S. draft,
coupled with Friday's handover of the Security Council presidency from
Cameroon to China and next Tuesday's U.S. election, have pushed back the
Bush administration's timetable for a U.N. vote.
On Wednesday, Powell stressed that Washington would not accept a
resolution that limited U.S. freedom of action on Iraq.
``There is nothing that we would propose in this resolution or we would
find acceptable in a resolution that would handcuff the president of the
United States in doing what he feels he must do,'' Powell said,
reiterating the administration's view that the U.S. Congress has already
given its authorization for U.S. action against Iraq.
But the administration also wants the United Nations to support a
resolution that strengthens inspections, warns Iraq of ``serious
consequences'' if it fails to cooperate, and declares that Iraq is still
in ``material breach'' of its obligations to get rid of its nuclear,
chemical and biological weapons programs.
In an effort to win support, Washington signaled a readiness this week to
make some minor concessions involving a new weapons inspection regime.
These were welcomed, but the United States has yet to find a solution to
the critical issue of the automatic use of force.
Russia's U.N. ambassador, Sergey Lavrov, said Tuesday it isn't the words
``material breach'' or ``serious consequences'' that's at issue but their
context and the meaning it implies.
In the case of the U.S. draft, Gatilov said Wednesday Russia still has
concerns that references to ``material breach'' could trigger an attack on
He stressed that any assurances from the United States and Britain that
this is not the case must be in the draft resolution. Diplomats, who spoke
on condition of anonymity, said Washington could be willing to offer such
At Wednesday's council meeting, diplomats said many nations also objected
to an introductory paragraph recalling U.N. resolutions adopted after
Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait which authorized member states ``to use all
necessary means'' to oust Iraqi troops and restore Kuwait's freedom. There
were concerns this could trigger new military action if Iraq failed to
The search for an Iraq resolution began on Sept. 12 when President Bush
challenged world leaders at the U.N. General Assembly to deal with Iraq's
failure to comply with resolutions demanding the elimination of its
weapons of mass destruction or stand aside as the United States acted.
On Wednesday, Bush hosted chief weapons inspectors Hans Blix of the United
Nations, and Mohamed ElBaradei of the International Atomic Energy Agency,
at the White House — two days after they told the Security Council that
Iraq should be warned it will face consequences if it doesn't cooperate.
Blix told Associated Press Television News that Bush made clear he was
categorically committed to ensuring the success of weapons inspections and
wanted to make sure that Iraq could not engage in in any ``cat and mouse
play'' with inspectors.
How can we manifest peace on
earth if we do not include everyone (all races, all nations, all religions, both
sexes) in our vision of Peace?
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