I watched a great movie this afternoon, The Interpreter, with Nicole Kidman and Sean Penn. While it was an action thriller, it also had a deeper message. The United Nations represents the idea of solving differences through reasoned discussions. The alternative is violence and war.
Reflecting on the last four centuries of war, which kicked off in 1618 with a European “world war (the Thirty Years’ War), it becomes clear that the voice of reason, the voice of humanity’s wisdom, has been expressed in the develoment of International Law and, since 1945, the United Nations Charter.
The princples and norms of international law have developed through custom, and through treaties and other agreements among the many nations of the world. Such treaties are the product of what are often long and drawn-out discussions based in large part on reasoned argument.
If you step back a little, you can understand that international law, including the U.N. Charter, is the expression of humanity’s voice of reason. If you examine the principles and norms, you will see that they embody enormous wisdom and good sense, borne of harsh experience.
If they do not solve all problems, because of the political realities in which they were created or exist today, at least they set clear goals toward which humanity should continue to strive.
Go read the U.N. Charter, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. They express the voice of reason of humanity.
They represent norms and goals which every nation should observe and strive to implement.
The alternative, as the framers of the U.N. Charter well understood, is endless violence and war.
The Trenchant Observer