Another comment about Myanmar (f/k/a Burma). When the cyclone hit and the ruling dictatorship refused outside help, some people and even some governments started talking about using force to deliver aid to the Myanmar people – even if it had to be done against the will of the Myanmar government. Mind boggling.
It took months to plan the invasion of Iraq (which I think most people would agree did not turn out all that well, at least in part because of poor planning). So now people really think we can invade Myanmar on a week’s notice to deliver aid? Such comments are just silly.
So what can we do? At first I thought The Wall Street Journal (May 10, 2008) had a good idea when it suggested Myanmar be kicked out of the United Nations. We can’t force the leaders of Myanmar to take aid, but that doesn’t mean we have to let such people belong to the UN. But then I started thinking about who a majority of the United Nations might try to kick out next. After all, back in the 1970s, the UN General Assembly declared Zionism to be "a form of racism".
It is sad to have to say, but the United Nations is, in many ways, not a responsible organization. It is sad because if it was responsible, it could be used for all kinds of good purposes. But it isn’t, and we can’t pretend that it is.
And so, what are we left with. Unfortunately, not much. All we can do is publicize the situation, declare the leaders of Myanmar to be morally unfit, and be ready to give aid if and when we can be sure the aid will actually get to those who need it.