Radical Reforms Required In United Nations

Pranay Parashar for BeyondHeadlines

A recent event that was supposed to raise many eyebrows and to stir up a boiling conundrum for a debate pertaining reforms in structure of UN (United Nations) failed to meet the eye of expectation. Although the event was not drastic in itself but it symbolizes the hegemonic attitude of unipolar world and its refusal to acknowledge the changing realities of power dynamics.


Recently U.S, angered upon the admission of Palestine in UNESCO as its 195th member, stopped funding to the UN agency. This freeze upon donation left the agency grasping for breath and forced it to slash the spending on schemes committed to welfare of educationally deprived section of the society.

Although the UNESCO inclusion of Palestine will have no impact on its bid for full membership of UN that will result in its formal recognition as an independent and newest nation, even then the incident indicate the lack of commitment on the part of major powers to liberate the world from the corridors of “manufactured and imposed” peace .

Eroding of traditional economic structures coupled with emergence of new world and shifting of economic centre towards Asia shall entail sharing of political clout leading to stable multipolar world based upon the principle of “mutual understanding” and “healthy competition” in long run. The present approach of hegemonic domination combined with an urge to control more and more resources will only result in unabated friction and unnecessary confrontation.

Emergence of regional structures like ASEAN, BRICS, SCO, IBSA and others on one part and emergence of individual aspirations of economically rising powers such as China, India, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa vying for greater political participation and deeper involvement in decision making that will shape the face of humanity in future, will have a bearing on every future political discourse.

In the backdrop of some other related incidents eq. imposition of unilateral sanctions on Iran, misuse of liberty of sanctions in Libya to overthrow an established regime in disguise of providing protection to civilians etc, a need is to create new world order that will be transparent, accountable and determined to prevent rampant human right violations either by governments or by external agencies, and to put a check on whimsical actions of major powers.

Light of this argument presses for the radical structural reforms in world agency UN in general and Security Council in particular. The need is to bring on the same pedestal those victims of the colonialisation or inadequately represented ones that were left out in unjustified race of unequal partners. Even if the dominant powers concede to the demand of reforms, the question arises, who can be accommodated and what shall be the criteria for inclusion? Shall the population, economic prowess, diversity of cultures and lack of proper representation be made the factor for consideration or something innovated need to be worked out? These determinants can be solved once the conceived goal of reform comes in sight.

Now, it will be interesting to see that how much time the West takes to shed its hegemonic approach and yield to the demand of greater political participation of other powers. The welfare of world lies in the notion of “liberty, equality and fraternity”. Why this seems so monumental when the “third world” asks for it.  


(The writer is a B. Tech student at Jamia Millia Islamia. His email id is pranayparashar@gmail.com. The views expressed in this article are writer’s own, and it does not necessarily reflect BH’s editorial policy)


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