B-1 Ch-6 United Nations - Revision Notes

 CBSE Class 12 Political Science

Revision Notes
International Organizations

  1. International organisations help countries to cooperate to create better living conditions all over the world and provide common platform to discuss contentious issues and find peaceful solutions, by a mechanism, rules and bureaucracy.And it also help with matters of war and peace.It is created by and responds to states.
  2. The international monetary Fund (IMF) is an internatinal organisation that overses those financial insutitute and regulations that act at the international level.The IMF has 188 members countries ,but they do not enjoy an equal say.
  3. The United Nations was founded as a successor to 'League of Nations' immediately after the Second World Charter by 51 states on 20th October 1945 with the headquarter at New York.
  4. The UN has 192 member states to prevent international conflicts to facilitate co-operation.The UN's main organs are the General Assembly and Security Council.In the General Assembly all members have one vote each.In the Security council,ther are five permanent members.These are ; US,UK,Russia,France and China,who enjoy Veto Power. The UN's representative head is Secretary General.
  5. The UN consists of many specialised agencies to deal with social and economic issues like WHO, UNDP, UNHRG, UNHCR, UNICEF, and UNESCO to work in an efficient manner and to bring world together.
  6. After the Cold War some of the changes occurred which affected the functioning of the UN i.e. collapse of Soviet Union, emergence of China and India as rising powers, entry of new members, and confrontations with the challenges like genocide, civil war, ethnic conflict, terrorism, nuclear proliferation etc.
  7. They faced two kinds of reforms over the time i.e.  reform of organisations structure and processes and a review of the issues that fall within the jurisdiction of UN as why veto powers to permanent members only, dominance of powerful countries and to play more effective role in peace and security missions etc.
  8. In the security council,there are five permanant members.The charter gave the permanant members a privilaged position to bring about stability in the world after the second world war.The main privilage of the five permanant members are permanency and the veto power and after all members have a vote.
  9. In 1992, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution over the reform of UN complaining no longer representation by contemporary powers, dominance of few countries based on western values etc. Following these in January 1997, Kofi Annan, UN Secretary General initiated on "How the UN should be reformed?"
  10. Since 1997 onwards, a new member to be added to the UN should fulfill the parameters of being a major economic and military power, contributor to UN Budget, a populous one, should respect democracy and human rights and to make council more representative.
  11. In September 2005, the heads of all member states of the UN took the steps to make the UN more relevant by creating peace building commissions, human rights council, agreement to achieve Millennium Development Goals, condemnation of terrorism, creation of democracy fund and an agreement to wind up Trusteeship Council.
  12. India is a big supporter ofrestructuring of the UN to promote development and cooperation among states, to composition of Security Council and to include more representation in council for its political support.
  13. Being a citizen of India, we would firmly support India's candidature for the permanent membership of UN Security Council on the grounds to be second most populous country, largest democracy, initiations in the UN, economic emergence and regular financial contributor to the UN.
  14. Some countries question India's inclusion as permanent members in the Security Council on the basis of its troubled relationship with Pakistan, nuclear weapon capabilities, and of India included, some emerging powers (Brazil, Germany, Japan, South Africa) will also be accommodated. France and the USA advocate that Africa and South America must be represented for they do not have any representation in the present structure.
  15. The UN can not serve as a balance against US dominance because the US is the only Superpower after 1991 and may ignore any international organisation economically and-militarily, its veto power also can stop any move damaging its interests as well as enjoys a considerable say in the choice of Secretary General of the UN.
  16. Despite the above mentioned strong activities of the US, the UN serves a purpose in bringing the world together in dealing with conflicts and social and economic issues. The UN provides a space within which arguments against specific US attitude and policies are heard and compromised.
    1. International Monetary Fund (IMF)

    (a) At the international level, overseas financial institutions and regulations.
    (b) It consists of 180 members. Out of them, G-8 members enjoy more powers i.e. the US, Japan, Germany, France, the UK, Italy, Canada and Russia except China and Saudi Arabia.
    (c) The US alone enjoys 16.75% voting rights.
    2. World Bank
    (a) It was created in 1944.
    (b) It works for human development, agriculture and rural development, environmental protection, infrastructure and governance and provides loans and grants to developing countries.
    (c) It is criticised for setting the economic agenda of poorer nations, attaching stringent conditions to its loans and forcing free market reforms.
    3. WTO-World Trade Organisation
    (a) An international organisation to set the rules for global trade which was set up in 1995 as a successor to General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs (GATT) and has 157 members. (as on 1September2012)
    (b) Major economic powers such as the US, EU and Japan have managed to use the WTO to frame rules of trade to advance their own interests.
    (c) The developing countries often complain of non-transparent procedure and being pushed around by big powers.
    4. IAEA-International Atomic Energy Agency
    (a) It was established in 1957 to implement US president Dwight Eisenhower's "Atoms for Peace" proposal.
    (b) It seeks to promote the peaceful use of nuclear energy and to prevent its use for military purpose.
    (c) IAEA .teams regularly inspect nuclear facilities all over the world to ensure that civilian reactors are not being used for military purposes.
    5. Amnesty International
    (a) An NGO to campaign for the protection of human rights all over the world.
    (b) It prepares and publishes reports on human rights to research and advocate human rights.
    (c) Governments are not always happy with these reports since a major focus of Amnesty is the misconduct of government authotities.
    6. Human Rights Watch
    (a) Another international NGO involved in research and advocacy of human rights.
    (b) The largest international human rights organisation in the US.
    (c) It draws the global media's attention to human rights abuses.
    (d) It helped in building international coalitions like the campaigns to ban landmines, to stop the use of child-soldier and to establish the international criminal court.