Jan 05,2017 – JORDAN TIMES EDITORIAL
Antonio Guterres, the new secretary general of the United Nations who replaced Ban Ki-moon, assumed his post on January 1 with a pledge to overhaul the world body.
Guterres is aware that there is widespread scepticism and cynicism about the UN, and that much work needs to be done to win confidence in this international organisation.
Before beginning his first day of work at UN headquarters in New York, he addressed staff and diplomats, warning that the UN faces “very challenging times” and warning that he is not a “miracle maker” and cannot, on his own, transform this 193-nation organisation into a more dynamic and effective world body.
“We should have no illusions” about what awaits the UN in the future, he cautioned.
“We see everywhere in the world conflicts that multiply and are interlinked and have triggered this new phenomenon of global terrorism,” he said, adding: “We still fail in the prevention of conflicts and conflict resolution.”
One such conflicts being Syria.
The UN is up against quite much derision about its lack of effectiveness, about scorn accumulated over the years for being only a talking shop.
US President-elect Donald Trump used his favourite method of communication last week to express his contempt for the UN, which he described as “just a club for people to get together, talk and have a good time”.
That in itself is worrisome, for, already considering himself above everybody, Trump will not feel bound by decisions taken by this world body.