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Columns

July 18, 2012

Arms treaty needs thought

Ada — The Arms Trade Treaty currently under consideration by the United Nations is rightfully the subject of growing concern. Typical of many U.N. initiatives, the treaty has an unrealistic but vaguely laudable goal.  According to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the “robust and legally binding” treaty “will have a real impact on the lives of those millions of people suffering from consequences of armed conflict, repression and armed violence.”  By establishing international standards on the import, export and transfer of arms, the U.N. aims to prevent weapons from falling into the hands of terrorists and other human rights abusers. 

 Naturally, the U.N. has awarded Iran a prominent role in the treaty negotiations despite having just found that nation guilty of supplying guns and bombs to the regime of Bashar Assad, which is engaged in the ongoing slaughter of thousands of Syrian civilians — just the type of atrocity the treaty is theoretically designed to prevent. 

 

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