The United Nations is set to convene a special session on the date of the Fourth World Human Rights Day on the issue of “ethics in global affairs.” This is expected to bring out the best from both sides of the aisle in international politics. Negotiation and dialogue are sure to abound. But what exactly is “ethics in international affairs?” What does “ethics” mean, and how does it factor into world affairs? Here's a brief look at how the term applies in the context of the United States and some of the issues that it could possible impact on U.S. foreign policy.
International law defines “ethics” as having regard to the interests of humanity, which includes all the peoples of the world. Ethics can be regarded as a form of universal morality. International law, including the Universal Declaration on Ethics, states that: “Each country in the United Nations Organization undertakes to ensure that its domestic laws and programs do not violate the rights of people or society.” Ethicists argue that this declaration does not apply to conflicts in the Middle East and other places where there are conflicts of interest among the various countries participating in the organization. However, the universal trend is toward increased concern about the suffering of women and children in conflicts around the world.
Ethicists also argue that there are times when the interests of one nation come ahead of the interests of another, and that this situation constitutes a human rights abuse. In these cases, that nation has a responsibility to rein in what is called “selective abuses.” That means that a nation could be involved in conflicts that are not in its best interest. Such actions amount to unjustifiable aggression, according to world leaders. They also argue that human rights violations could lead to war, and that nations that engage in such acts may become “lesser partners” in the global community.
On the issue of “ethics” as it relates to conflicts in the Middle East, there are many people who believe that there is nothing wrong with the United Nations wanting to use the Biodiversity Priority Date as a deadline for negotiations regarding peace and stability in the Middle East. These critics argue that the United States should not become involved in the process. However, others say that if the United States was to be involved in the negotiations, then it could provide a vital voice for combating international terrorism. America's voice could help bring peace to the Middle East, they say. If the United States was to take part in negotiations on the November 2 target date, then the United States and the international community would have to deal with what is referred to as “selective hypocrisy,” which is the use of double standards when it comes to peace and security.
Some may say that the United States has the right and the responsibility to prioritize human rights during bilateral talks. The United States has provided enormous assistance to many people in conflicts around the world, and it has done so by passing resolutions that demand respect for human rights and freedoms. If the United States was to stop providing assistance to nations that are promoting human rights abuses and violations of other international human rights norms, then it would be viewed as a betrayal of its values and its interests. It must stick to its goals of promoting human rights around the world, and it must work to ensure that the United Nations is able to play the role that it was intended for – to prevent conflicts and violence in regions that are plagued by human injustices and poverty.
The United States was created as a sign of hope for humanity, and it must always promote a peaceful and uncluttered environment for the future generation. If the United States does not play its part in preserving world peace and security and the stability of the Middle East, then other countries will draw up their own agendas and take matters into their own hands. The future of the Middle East will be darkened with conflicts, and poverty will increase in areas that are currently free of conflict. This means that the future of the world will be uncertain, and we can expect major conflicts to break out throughout the decades. The stability of the Middle East and the United States' role in promoting peace and security are irreplaceable.
The United States must also play its part in preserving world trade and the openness of the American economy. If the United States and other countries are no longer the major players in trade, then there will be less money to be sent home, and that money would have to come from other sources. That would mean less money for you, and less money for your family. As a result, you would have less disposable income, and you would have to use that income to support the people and regions that need it most.
The responsibility of the United States is to lead by example. If the United States of America does not play its role in preserving world peace and security and the stability of the Middle East, then other countries will pick up the baton and begin promoting their own interests, and they will find that they have more than just oil and gold to play with. Indeed, if the United States does not lead by example, then who will? So the answer to the original question is a resounding yes, and you must do what you can to help.
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