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07 February 2018
New disputes and funding dilemmas between US Administration and the UN threaten World Peace and Prosperity
By Stephen F. Moseley, President, UNA-NCA

Dear Colleagues,

Many of you are likely aware of the challenges regarding UN funding from the US for the current fiscal year. The result so far has been very serious delays and interruptions of the funds for humanitarian aid to refugees in all areas of the world. These challenges have also weakened support for the famine crises in Africa, Yemen, and other areas – such as Central America – where the burdening repercussions of climate change are devastating rural farming efforts. By interrupting medical supplies for severe disease outbreaks, in addition to nutritional deficits from widespread food shortages, funding gaps are hindering childhood development and having lasting effects on future generations.

The number of people impacted by the burden of climate change is approaching a hundred million. Even now, many people in areas previously characterized as peaceful and generally prosperous are suffering from droughts and floods leading to displacement and exhaustion of countries' resources.

In response to the protests against the Trump Administration’s unilateral decision recognizing Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, the administration has withheld UN humanitarian funding for Palestinians of Gaza and the West Bank. However, this decision has the potential to jeopardize the health, education, nutrition, and general wellbeing of another 2 million people.

In his State of the Union Speech, the President vowed to cut off development and humanitarian aid to any country that will not vote in the UN to support his decision on Jerusalem. Following the speech, the US Ambassador to the UN, criticized the UN Human Rights Council and High Commissioner for contacting all companies from the US, Europe and within Israel regarding their supplying and building of settlements in the occupied territories held by Israel. Now, the Trump administration wants congress to pass legislation that would exempt US companies from the standing UN sanctions that target such companies doing business in the occupied territories.

Just as there could be some moratorium on the carnage and displacement of people from Syria and surrounding areas, these new US threats to peace in the Middle East could overwhelm the UN and other’s efforts to protect the lives of the helpless millions.

Without quick passage of the US government's 2018 budget that includes full US funding to the UN and without the halt of future cutbacks for the 2019 US contributions to the UN, these human disasters could spin out of control; leaving many major parts of the world a powder keg for possible war fronts.

Humanitarian and development aid to meet people's basic needs – such as education,  employment training, and entrepreneurship – in these deprived areas are the only solutions available to impede mass migrations, deaths of millions of children, and increases in disaffected youth bent toward revenge against the US in many more parts of the world.

In accord with its legal commitments to the UN, the cost of full US funding for the UN is less than one percent of the national budget. These payments can defuse these growing crises, and help rebuild our relations with those suffering.

That aid and help will be repaid to the US many times over in less costs for armed protection of our diplomatic and business interests in the world and diminish the threats of more and larger wars, we can ill afford.

Maintaining strong UN funding is a small expense, worthwhile investment, and bolsters the prestige of the US around the world by advancing US national interests and values.

Write to your legislators and let them know you care and support full funding for the UN this year and next. Don't let them weaken the very strength the UN has to keep the world healthier and more peaceful. Humanitarian and development aid both bilaterally and with the UN agencies are essential medicine for long term prosperity, health, sustained peace, and productivity. The wellbeing of our almost 400 million Americans depends on these modest contributions by the US which can enhance the lives of nearly 5 billion people worldwide.

Tell your neighbors, your business partners, your faith friends, your family members, and your alumni cohort of all generations that US support for full funding of the UN is essential for all of our lives. Tell them they too can support the UN by taking a stand and contacting their congressional legislators in every district and state.