Exhumator Esoterics

Encyclopedia of Spiritual — Letter U - UNITED NATIONS

Exhumator Esoterics
Exhumator Esoterics

In the aftermath of World War I, the international community established the League of Nations to curtail some of the worst excesses of mass slaughter. That the League of Nations was powerless to prevent the genocide and slaughter on a genuinely global scale during World War II did not deter the international community from starting again after that war with the construction of another, not dissimilar organization. Thus, the United Nations (UN) was born with grand aims of world peace and freedom in a tolerant world that worked by consensus but respected the diversity of cultures. The Charter of the UN was signed on 26 June 1945, in San Francisco, at the conclusion of the UN Conference on International Organization, and came into force on 24 October 1945.

It was a world seemingly weary of war. The Preamble to the Charter sets forth a context critical for all aspects of development in any society and determination to:

Save succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind

Reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in the equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small

Establish conditions under which justice and respect for the obligations arising from treaties and other sources of international law can be maintained

Promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom

For these ends, the Charter outlines a code of behavior:

To practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbors

To unite our strength to maintain international peace and security

To ensure, by the acceptance of principles, and the institution of methods, that armed force shall not be used, save in the common interest

To employ international machinery for the promotion of the economic and social advancement of all peoples

Article 1 states that the purposes of the United Nations are:

1. To maintain international peace and security, and to that end: to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace, and to bring about by peaceful means, and in conformity with the principles of justice and international law, adjustment or settlement of international disputes or situations which might lead to a breach of the peace

2. To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and selfdetermination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace

3. To achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion

4. To be a center for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.

The discrepancy between moral ideal and historical/ political reality was as evident at the time of the UN Charter as it is now, perhaps more so. The timing, for example, of the first signatures on the Charter on 26 June 1945 is chilling. These signatures appeared with their commitment to peace amongst nations- less than 2 months before the atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima (August 6, 1945) and Nagasaki (August 8, 1945).

The timeline of the United Nations since its inception shows how the organization has developed exponentially into a truly global and far-reaching one. In relation to human rights and humanitarian work in particular, the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948), signed 3 years after the Charter, has proliferated into a complex of other declarations, covenants, conventions, and world conferences.

The United Nations: A Timeline

26 June 1945: Signing of the Charter of the United Nations (San Francisco)

9 December 1945: Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide

10 December 1945: Universal Declaration of Human Rights

4 November 1950: European Convention on Human Rights (Council of Europe)

28 July 1951: Convention relating to the Status of Refugees

20 December 1952: Convention on the Political Rights of Women

23 October 1953: Protocol Amending the Slavery Convention (originally signed in Geneva, Switzerland, 25 September 1926)

28 September 1954: Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons

7 September 1956: Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery

25 June 1957: Convention on the Abolition of Forced Labor

20 November 1959: Declaration of the Rights of the Child

14 December 1960: Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples

20 November 1963: Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

21 December 1965: International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination established

16 December 1966: International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Human Rights Committee established

7 November 1967: Declaration on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women Proclamation of Teheran-International Conference on Human Rights

26 November 1968: Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes Against Humanity

30 November 1973: International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid

9 December 1975: Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Being Subjected to Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

18 December 1979: Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women

Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women established

27 June 1981: African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights (Organization of African Unity)