Politics & Policy

Author Confessional: Eric Shawn

Spring authors tell tales out of the publisher's office.

Diplomats Confess! Whenever I would talk to a United Nations ambassador, official, or staff member and ask for an interview for my book, the response would continually include an enthusiastic desire to reveal the real inner workings of the world body. When we would sit down they would routinely say, do you want this “on the record” or do you want the truth? I found it so amusing that practically each person with whom I talked would volunteer to tell it like it is without my even asking. I came to expect the question and was never disappointed. I began to realize that at the U.N., they have suffered under the muzzle of political correctness, continually mindful of diplomatic niceties, and I was offering an opportunity for them to finally speak freely about their experiences as long as they were not identified by name. I began to wonder: Why do they maintain a public pretense about the truth? Doesn’t denial in the long run do far more damage to the institution than facing facts and figuring out how to fix what’s wrong? Only recently have some top U.N. officials been willing to critique the organization publicly, calling the Security Council “ineffectual” or the U.N. staff a “privileged tenured minority.” Perhaps this suggests a trend at transparency at the world body, but don’t bet on it. On the same day when Iran announced it had enriched uranium, it was elected as deputy for Asian nations on the United Nations Commission on Disarmament and there was no admission of the irony uttered from the diplomatic corps.

Eric Shawn, a Fox News Channel correspondent, wrote The U.N. Exposed : How the United Nations Sabotages America’s Security and Fails the World, scheduled for release by Sentinel on May 8.

NR Staff — Members of the National Review editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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