There is a constant debate in foreign policy on how much we should rely on, or give authority and our national decision-making to, international organizations. Such a question implies that our values, morals and interests are no better or worse than anyone else. Otherwise, we would never give up our own sovereignty to be decided by some other country or group of countries.
Two recent events in the news point out the dangers of internationalism.
Case in Point #1:
Last week, the United Nations added China as a member of the UN Human Rights Commission, where they will be responsible for monitoring basic human rights around the globe.
How have we forgotten the history of the Communist government in China? The Cultural Revolution of the 1960’s and ‘70’s killed more people than Hitler’s Holocaust, by several orders of magnitude-in the tens of millions. More recently, human rights groups and media around the globe have brought attention to China’s mass oppression and arrest of the Uryghur minority people. And then there is the ongoing persecution, imprisonment and torture of religious groups.
The problem with international organizations is that they do not hold to our morals. This is a perfect example. Internationalists will argue that all morals and views should be considered equal, that we can’t assume ours are better than others. They are wrong. And we should not subordinate ours to people who have morals that put oppressive governments like China in charge of fighting oppression.
Case in Point #2:
The World Health Organization (WHO), charged with monitoring who health concerns and coordinating response to any rising crisis. The current head of WHO is Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus who is from Ethiopia. Tedros is not trained as a medical doctor and prior to taking his post in 2017, had no experience in world health management.
Tedros has praised China’s ‘transparency’ in fighting the virus yet the Chinese for months covered up the outbreak to the point of imprisoning the doctor who first raised an alarm and threatening others if they did so. To this day, scientists say efforts in fighting the virus are hindered because China still has not been forthcoming in the origins of the virus which is critical in finding how it spreads and ways to stop it.
Tedros has uniformly praised China for its efforts to stop the pandemic, yet we know with a high degree of certainty that it was travel of thousands of people from the Wuhan Province of China, where the outbreak started, to Italy that started the catastrophe in northern Italy.
And Tedros was critical of the United States when it imposed a travel ban on China in an effort to stop the spread. Yet now most nations have banned travel from China but most international travel.
Tedors and WHO have been behind the curve every step of the way, and have been apologizing for China and its government whose lax health laws and cover-up are the cause of what the world is now suffering. We don’t know why, but some have speculated that it is because Ethiopia is almost totally dependent on aid from China for its economy to survive. Whatever the case, WHO has failed miserably in the biggest health crisis the world has seen in 100 years.
These two examples are a bit different. At some level, in our connected world we need a world health organization to help monitor health crises and coordinate responses. Other international organizations who are primarily funded by the American taxpayer but perform very little service of value, we have to question. We should do so with much more scrutiny when we see things like these happening.