Politics & Policy

Roman Holiday from Decency

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization has been holding a conference in Rome, its headquarters, for the purpose of discussing the crisis in supplies of food and oil now affecting pretty well every country. Some 40 world leaders were present. Pushing aside constructive debate, however, the conference was hijacked by Robert Mugabe and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, two of the most odious men to be found anywhere in public life. Both are killers. Apparently FAO rules allow countries to choose their own representatives to these conferences, and therefore there was no way of preventing their coming to Rome. This only goes to prove yet again how the United Nations and its subsidiaries are in the habit of favoring third-world monsters.

The 20 or so years of Mugabe’s misrule have destroyed Zimbabwe’s economy. Fertile as it is, the country has ceased to export food and instead become an importer of it. Mugabe has expropriated at gun-point and without compensation almost all the white-owned farms that once produced the food, handing the land over to his supporters, who have neither the skills nor the capital to farm it. Millions of its people are hungry, if not starving, and millions more have fled abroad. Mugabe told the conference that Britain was responsible for the plight he himself had made, and that the aid agencies on which the hungry depend were actually agents of the West seeking regime change. Most Europeans were not in the hall, but the applause of listening Africans explains why that continent is without hope for the time being. At home at that very moment, Mugabe’s paramilitary thugs were busy keeping him in power by arresting the leader of the opposition, and murdering as many as 50 electoral opponents, while hundreds more have disappeared.

Ahmadinejad offered a different conspiracy theory. For him, the Jews were behind shortages and rising prices. Harping on a theme dear to him, he said that it would be in the interest “of the people of Europe if Israel ceased to exist.” And more: “The people of Europe have suffered the most harm from Zionists and today the costs of that falsified regime, whether political or economic, are on Europe’s shoulders.” Which is rich, considering that Iran has dispatched squads to carry out murder in several countries in Europe, and generally sponsors terrorism wherever it can. He also sought to meet the pope, presumably to tell him that the Hidden Imam of his Shiite faith is about to return, and therefore to prepare for the end of days. The pope wisely steered clear of this. And at home at that very moment, Ahmadinejad’s paramilitary thugs were arresting ten Iranians for converting to Christianity.

The likes of Mugabe and Ahmadinejad are anti-Western but, more essentially, they are anti-human. To give them an international platform on which to spout and publicize their nonsense and their racism is to discredit the United Nations and all its works. The harm and the disgrace are equally intolerable. The U.N. and its agencies are fast becoming redundant to the world’s well-being. 


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