There should be no permanent members of the UN Security Council
No introduction at present. Why not write one?
You can also add to the debate by leaving a comment at the end of the page.
The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) is a body with "..primary responsibility, under the Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security." [[http://www.un.org/Docs/sc/unsc_background.html]]. Currently it is comprised of five permanent member states (5Ps) and ten non-permanent member states which are elected by member states. The five permanent members enjoy an exclusive right to singlehandedly veto any resolution proposed for the UNSC. The manner of exercising veto rights have given firm ground for critics of the UNSC. Veto is used as an economic and power display tool in the political arena and has had little to do with international peace and security. The veto issue is believed to be the reason for the massive failure of UNSC to prevent the humanitarian disasters in Rwanda in 1994 and Darfur in 2004. [[https://www.law.kuleuven.be/iir/nl/onderzoek/wp/WP78e.pdf]]
Failure to act poses problems more elaborated in our case have been noticed by the global community and a reform has been in the process of devising since 2005 however the biggest issue is on the permanent membership expansion. [[http://www.reformtheun.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3&Itemid=7]]
We believe the way to make the UNSC more focused on its actual mission and duties is to abolish permanent positions in UNSC altogether. We believe all 15 seats should be distributed in world regions and subjected to an election of the member states of that region. We do not think that this debate should be about exact regional representation, instead it should be decided on the potential to make UN Security Council more accountable and effective in solving global security problems.
With regard to veto rights, we believe it is an issue worth a debate of its own and therefore we would like to seperate this debate from it. We do not however sympathise with the current practices of 5Ps for exercising veto rights.
That the reform of the UNSC is necessary and indeed inevitable if the UNSC is to perform its functions under the UN Charter properly is undisputed. Equally, expansion of UNSC to include members from heretofore unrepresented regions of Latin America, Africa and Asia is necessitated by the changes in the balance of power in the world since the end of World War II. Near universal consensus exists among UN members on the need to reform UNSC to provide for better representation and more effective discharge of UNSC mandates. [[Nico Schrijver (2007), J.C. & S.L. 130]]
The need for UNSC reform is urgent as, in the word of GA President Joseph Deiss, “it was unacceptable that the international community had been unable to make substantial progress on reforming the 15-member Council, despite active debate for almost two decades.”[[ http://bit.ly/oSbb2V%5D%5D
However, how to ensure the reform cures the North-South imbalance and protect the best interest of new members? That the removal of permanent membership (PM) should necessarily be part of UNSC reform is a dubious claim. For whatever benevolent motifs prop here presented for removal of PM its unintended consequences would be devastating, first and foremost, for less powerful states on the UNSC.
From the very start proposition (prop) shows lack of knowledge of the subject. Stating that Permanent Members (PMs) single-handedly veto ANY resolution in UNSC is false for ONLY substantive matters “require nine votes, including the concurring votes of all five permanent members”, also known as “great Power Unanimity”. [[http://goo.gl/3ksvH]]
Notably, prop fails to articulate a clear & definite position, which makes this very debate weak and poor. Thus, first, they propose having 15 UNSC members representing different regions, then they state that this is not what they want to have our debate on. They also set veto power outside the scope of this debate, but, at the same time, base all their arguments explicitly on veto i
It would increase the legitimacy of the UNSC
Abolishing the permanent seat increases the legitimacy of UNSC. At the moment many developing countries view UNSC as a club of powerful nations for exercising their own interests. When the UNSC was created it had at least some legitimacy because of the power vacuum after WW2. Since the creation of UN the world has changed a lot and many countries have earned reputation to be equal members of the Security Council. They have established stable states (ex. Brazil, South Africa, India) and proved themselves as regional leaders. They have joined UNSC peace keeping missions and supported its aid programs. However they are still treated as not able to make responsible decisions. Instead 5P countries continue enjoying unrivalled ability to make decisions that will affect the collective security.
While in the West the UNSC is seen as force for peace, many developing countries perceive it as an instrument of western dominance. While the US, the UK, and France talk about human rights, other 5P members such as Russia and China regularly abuse them (Chechnya, Tibet [[http://www.hrw.org/asia/china]]). The permanent seat is a symbol of unwillingness to be accountable and furthermore, share the power of making decisions. There is no equal playing field although it would be very important for better acceptance of the resolutions passed by the Security Council. Developing and also developed (Germany) nations with ability to vote for their representative would be more supportive of UNSC peace missions and decisions, because they would have potential to influence those decisions. There has to be room for flexibilty when deciding who is the agressor which currently is not present due to the constant ideological issues of some 5P members.
If UNSC Security really wants to be legitimate body it should be accountable for its decisions to other nations. A situation when the executive body is also the controlling body does not create legitimacy in the eyes of other nation
However, the real challenge for UN members is to agree on “how to compose a Council sufficiently small for efficient and effective action and sufficiently large to be effective and its decisions to be legitimate.” [[Nico Schrijver (2007), J.C. & S.L. 130]]
Prop stresses that legitimacy of UNSC has been endangered & it should be increased. Prop claims that at creation of UNSC, it had some legitimacy, but now it does not. But how Prop determined the degrees of legitimacy & what is the required level of legitimacy has been left unclear.
Citing Brazil, South Africa and India as examples of how PM disadvantages regional powers is totally misleading. In fact, under most of the reform proposals these countries are considered the most natural and legitimate contenders for new permanent seats on the reformed UNSC. [[http://bit.ly/orcFBU]] By opposing the expansion of PM to include these regional powers, prop kicks itself in the foot and contradicts its own stated aim of more equitable geographical representation.
Prop states that countries that are stable & proved regional leadership should be able to make ‘responsible decisions’. Next they state that P5 enjoy making decisions with an effect on the collective security. But prop failed to explain what ‘responsible decisions’ are. We are left with no choice but to infer that responsible decisions mean those affecting collective security. It means that Prop unknowingly asserts new regional powers become PMs, thus supporting our case.
The claim that P5 enjoy unrivalled ability to make decisions affecting collective security is false. Under the UN Charter it takes 9 votes not only those of P5 to make a decision!
It is clear that removing PM will cause the UN to fail just like the League of Nations. The main lesson to learn from LoN failure had been that an international organization cannot work unless all major powers are not members (US decision not to join and exclusion of the USSR). [[http://goo.gl/SyTBh]]
It would make the UNSC more effective and efficient
The selective responses and endless battles on who will veto what have damaged the efficiency and the effectiveness of the UNSC. Firstly, having permanent positions have allowed the states to use veto to achieve a “deadlock in the admissions procedure,” prohibiting the organisation to be contemporary and serve the current needs. Although veto might be an incentive to thoroughly reason and negotiate the resolution with opponents, in reality it has proven to create deadlocks simply due to stubbornness which no negotiation can mend. And it has become so powerful largely due to the fact there is little consequence to such behaviour among 5Ps.
Existence of permanent seats creates a situation when the UNSC is dominated by national interest not collective security. It perpetuates geopolitical games and does not allow the UNSC to step up to the higher and more important role it was created for in the first place. When no permanent seats are possible, even if a country exercises veto, it can no longer take only its own interest into account; it has to be to some extent aligned with the interest of the majority of the region. Although it might not work perfectly in the real setting, just enabling this tool would allow focusing more on the actual duties: international peace, sanctions and other means to stop aggressors, and maintain operation of the UNSC. [[http://www.un.org/Docs/sc/unsc_functions.html]]
Even if there would still be dead-end in negotiation over resolutions, vetoes would be backed by region, thus more justified and there would be a possibility to start over after election for decisions such as membership and judges of International Court of Justice.
The rationale for expanding PM is strong. To be effective and legitimate, UNSC as the guarantor of international peace and security must reflect the contemporary distribution of power to ensure the political support and resources of the world's most capable states.[[http://on.cfr.org/rp1fJV]]
As UNSC membership is much coveted there is much infighting within regional groups as to which countries qualify for membership.[[ A.J.I.C.L. 288-292 (2006)]] With the removal of PM and elections of all UNSC members this fight would intensify resulting in protracted stalemates. Failure to timely compose the UNSC would paralyze the operation of UNSC and undermine its credibility. For example, failure of Guatemala and Venezuela to secure a majority in the General Assembly after 48 (!) rounds of voting in 2006 led to the election of a compromise candidate. [[http://bit.ly/pKekGL]] Removal of PM would heighten the risk of such stalemates as all members would have to face such election hurdles at frequent intervals.
To be effective UNSC needs compliance and capacity to enforce its decisions. However, prop fails to demonstrate how removal of PM would ensure compliance with UNSC decisions of powerful states which would no longer be present on the UNSC, i.e. with no impetus or interest in having its decisions enforced.
Equally, prop fails to show how UNSC operations could be supported without stable funding from powerful nations, e.g. for peace-keeping and enforcement actions.
Contrary to prop’s unfounded assertion, both collective and national interests will equally be served as PM will incentivize states to provide funding which is absolutely instrumental to the effective discharge of UNSC’s mission. Thus UN peacekeeping operations alone cost $7.60 billion in the current fiscal year with 10 top financial contributors including 4 permanent members of UNSC (46.77% of the budget) and 2 aspiring permanent members Japan and Germany (20.55% of the budget). [[http://bit.ly/hY7qcF]]
It will provide more accountability
The existence of permanent positions in UNSC has led to lack of accountability for decisions of the UNSC. By having indefinitely secured positions in the UNSC showing concern for global threats to security is rather a gesture of charity towards the other countries of the world, than their duty. The 5Ps face no consequences towards their ability to make further decisions in the UNSC even if they fail to adequately respond and thus allow the genocide of Rwandans, the war of Vietnam, and the disastrous violence in Darfur; at the same time they were quick to react on the occupation of Kuwait which happens to be rich with oil [[http://www.gtinitiative.org/documents/PDFFINALS/3Politics.pdf]]. Every decision making system in an organisation which supports democratic values such as the UN [[http://www.un.org/democracyfund/About_Us/about_us_index.html]] needs checks and balances. We are certain that this system is not balanced and fosters no incentives for the decision-making countries to act upon situations outside their own economical or political interest sphere.
The notion that some countries can frivolously decide to which crisis the common force should react and get away with wrong decisions just because at some point in history they were awarded with luxury is outdated in the 21st century. Abolishing permanent positions and subjecting every member state holding a position to the necessity to be re-elected to maintain the ability to contribute to decision-making would provide a serious incentive to respond to any critical situation in the world. This means the responses would be more timely and adequate to the threat. Moreover, there would be more responses altogether regardless of the countries involved. Although there are some limitations to popular vote which underlies election, when it takes ensuring peace in the world to win that vote we deem it to be a worthy trade-off which ultimately benefits all parties involved.
There is no reason to attribute all the failures of the current setup of UNSC to PM. For example, Rwandan genocide cited as one such failure has in reality nothing to do with PM as such. Rather the use of hidden veto whereby the P5 members would convene in private and make decisions behind closed doors has caused UNSC inaction in this case. [[http://bit.ly/p5hH8b]] And since prop itself accepts that veto power is a totally separate issue from that of PM, to blame PM for failure to prevent atrocities in cases such as Rwanda is to ignore the reality on the ground. To expand PM is to actually break this pernicious practice of secret consultations by the few powerful states by admitting new permanent members from underrepresented regions and thus requiring the old PMs to consider the views of all regional blocks when making decisions.
Prop fails to see the real issues at play PM is not the reason for UNSC’s lack of accountability. There are other means to improve transparency and accountability, e.g., by improving the working methods of the Council, institutionalizing UNSC co-operation with other principal UN organs and strengthening consultation with all relevant stakeholders.[[ http://bit.ly/ob0R5F, p. 135]]
Granting formal decision-making power to non-permanent will not automatically shift the balance of power in the world. Political power and strategies such as threats or side-payments are used to gain the support of other members. [[Rev Int Organ (2011) 6:163–187, p. 172]]
Abolishing PM would encourage regional powers to use informal ways to get their interests served, e.g. back-door deals and side payments to win votes. It’d be naïve to expect them to step back, watch decisions of import to their strategic interests being made for them and follow orders of less powerful states. PM serves as an accountability mechanism putting major international players under the spotlight and requiring them to make decisions in the open as opposed to back-door dealing.
It will lead to fair regional representation, as well as make it more legitimate and flexible
Most of the opposition's material covered the emerging countries and why they should be included in PM. Their proposal of mere expansion the PM is useless and does not solve the global inaction problems. On the other hand, voting is a good mechanism for mobilizing the states from different regions and empowering them to have a larger say on the international arena. Our extension will analyze the issue from developing countries' perspective and show why our plan benefits them more.
First, we have to understand that emerging world is varied in itself, and merely picking some countries that seem powerful and legitimate enough and then giving them PM is a failed strategy that will necessarily lead to tensions similar to those we already have between permanent and non-permanent memebers. For example, it is reasonable to assume that Pakistan won't be content if India is elected as PM in UNSC, further destabilising this region and hampering the global security achievements. In contrast, gathering mandate through votes will be seen much more legitimate among developing countries themselves. That is how democratic system works: if bad decisions are made, voters won't vote next time.
Prop failed to refute our counterarguments against their first 3 points showing lack of evidence to support their position. Prop repeats unsupported claims and opinions of their own without any legitimate sources of information in support.
Thus, prop first suggests that “stable states (ex. Brazil, South Africa, India) & proved regional leaders” be part of ‘responsible-decision process’, but then state that “merely picking some countries that seem powerful and legitimate enough…is a failed strategy.” This is a clear self-contradiction on Prop’s part, showing once again lack of clearly defined position.
In sum, prop failed to prove why PM should be removed, how equitable geographical representation and voting are exclusive of PM. Actually voting is already in place in UNSC with resolutions accepted by a certain number of votes. We acknowledge the need for UNSC reform, but no reform proposal has seriously suggested abortion of PM. [[http://on.cfr.org/qmdpvy]]
Prop’s attempt to refute our argument by point at our own reference is another self-contradiction. Stating “their own reference #3 argues for having permanent seats” does not help prop’s case because this is exactly the thrust of our position to preserve PM irrespective of form of representation, be it regional or country. Prop failed to notice that we have promoted PM based on fair geographical representation throughout our case.
It is naïve of prop to think that most developing countries can be as convincing as powerful states. Prosperity of developing countries largely depends on their relations with more powerful states. This holds especially true on the regional basis, e.g. Russia is the main export market for neighbouring countries. Developing countries understand this well. So this ‘fair’ representation through regular elections will ensure nothing but that powerful states retain their influence in the UNSC. The international community understands this well thus preserving PM
Summary - Team Latvia
To restate, our plan is to abolish permanent positions in the UNSC altogether. All 15 seats shall be distributed in world regions and subjected to an election of the member states of that region.
The first crucial problem with status quo is that current structure of UNSC is illegitimate. 5Ps are predominantly Western liberal democracies and include no single country from South America and Africa, whose global security interests are severely underrepresented. Our plan improves the UNSC's legitimacy by a) reducing North-South representation disparity; b) giving more political leverage (via elections) to countries that originate from the same region as current 5Ps do (because now they may not be reelected the next time). The opposition responded to this by proposing simply including more countries from various regions as permanent members; although improving representativeness as well, this idea falls for two important reasons: lack of accountability and inefficiencies.
As regards accountability, while UNSC's goals are to ensure collective security, its outlook and resolutions are unavoidably biased because permanent members (both current and suggested by Opposition) can always insert their own political agenda in the decision-making process, knowing that whatever they do they remain at power. Our plan makes each member place subject to election by its regional neighbors; this basic democratic mechanism involves more countries in the global security process, which is more objective and accountable. The opposition engaged very weakly on this point, talking about risk of not including major powers in UNSC but failing to show why is it different from SQ and could be disastrous. They also said that voting may lead to backdoor deals, providing no explanation on why these deals can't take place now or with more permanent members, and failing to disprove that increased competition through elections will limit such activities.
Speaking of effectiveness, under our plan countries will feel they have more leverage over UNSC decisions because of increased accountability of its members. When there are no permanent seats, even if a country exercises veto, it can no longer take only its own interest into account; it has to be to some extent aligned with the interest of the majority of the region. Thus, countries will be more motivated to take part in the decision-making process, which will make it more objective and efficient. Even if stalemates occur, now vetoes would be backed regionally, i.e. more justified; plus, it'd be possible to solve conflicts more efficiently via elections.
All in all, any country that is granted permanent membership in UNSC has a moral hazard to abuse it and pursue its own interests, disregarding collective security. Moreover, being permanently represented is not legitimate and does not match the ever-changing nature of power balances in the world. Thus, there should be no permanent member states of the UNSC.
Argument 1: PM serves interests of developing countries
Unlike what prop suggests the possibility to remove permanent membership (PM) has never been seriously contemplated, and for good reasons. There are certain benefits tied to PM that would serve to advance the interests of developing countries in UNSC decision-making. To see the importance of PM to developing countries, one only has to look at the fervor with which countries from underrepresented Latin America, Asia and Africa, most notably Brazil, India and Nigeria, have sought PM of the UNSC recently.[[http://bit.ly/q6wAfQ]] Developing countries aspire to gain the advantages that PM provides, especially a permanent voice in UNSC discussions and power to influence decisions of global importance legally binding under international law.
As Dumisani Kumalo of South Africa noted, no serious suggestions to abolish permanent membership have been discussed by various UNSC reform initiatives, thus requiring that Africa be represented by Permanent Members.[[http://bit.ly/nzwXms]]
Absolutely all UN members with the single exception of Bolivia have recognized that PM is critical to the effective functioning of UNSC whatever shape the UNSC reform eventually takes. [[http://bit.ly/rnku7m, p.6]] As the push for reform comes from developing countries, absence of any serious proposals and support for abolition of the permanent category of UNSC membership goes to show that developing countries see benefits in preserving PM as a viable mechanism for consistent and visible presence of developing countries in international law-making and enforcement.
Prop is siding with the P5 by opposing the expansion of PM as the five Great Powers will have ensured their dominant influence in the UNSC under any reform option, e.g. by buying UNSC rotating members’ votes with aid as is already the case.[[ http://bit.ly/qmVIXL%5D%5D Without PM it is the developing countries that will lose by missing an excellent opportunity to finally gain a visible, well-deserved presence on the international arena.
The only complete argument brought by the side opposition was that having PM is actually beneficial for developing countries, and that number of PMs actually should be increased. Their main justification was improved representation of developing countries in UNSC, which is exactly what our plan brings about by introducing elections and distributing seats among different regions. In fact, their own reference #3 argues for having permanent seats *for regions*, e.g. two for Africa, and not for countries[[http://bit.ly/rnku7m]]. If there is a vote system, there is no need for PM in developing states as you can get voted in by convincing other countries about your ideas. If your ideas are not good enough, then you do not deserve to be elected, at least at this point of time.
The clash here is whether having PMs for any single country has any advantages other than representation of this country. The opposition has failed to indicate any, as well as show what would be the "devastating consequences" if PMs are removed. Our arguments against PMs, e.g. lack of accountability and incentive to push one's own political agenda, were never refuted. They talked about increased opportunity of stalemate - we say that expanding the PM will lead exactly to this because there will be more unaccountable members. They also blamed us for siding with P5 and talked about possible mechanisms to influence the power balance. We note that the developed countries can buy votes under any mechanism as what matters is money. However, under our model, there is competition between states because no one's place is guaranteed, which pushes them to more accountable decisions. Finally, they said that UNSC will not be able to work without funding and participation of powerful countries. This is naive because under Status Quo there are many powerful nations that are not in UNSC. Plus, being powerful doesn't justify being unaccountable. We cannot expand PM to include everyone - then the system truly fails.
Argument 2: UNSC sanctions become powerless without PM
1) “Speak softly, but carry a big stick”
Current P5 membership is represented by main victorious powers of World War II. Vast contribution of P5 ended the WWII & has, for the next 56 years, been keeping peace worldwide. These countries have since assumed responsibility for maintaining peace in the world. Notably, P5 members are the only countries recognized as nuclear-weapon states (NWS) under Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty.[[http://goo.gl/LH8vt]]
So traditionally PMs have been nations that are able to exert its influence on a global scale and thus fulfill UNSC’s mission best by ensuring peace and security in the world. Their economic, military, diplomatic & cultural strengths enabled UN to maintain peace for more than 50 yrs and avoid disgraceful failure like that of League of Nation’s to prevent the WWII. These strengths ensure UNSC sanctions & resolutions are enforced properly. Sanctions against Liberia, Libya and the former Yugoslavia are examples of UNSC success. [[http://on.cfr.org/qmdpvy]]
2) PM benefits world economy
Both existing and aspiring Permanent Members (PMs) are strong economies with major influence on the rest of the world. Ensuring stability of P5 members ensures relative stability of the rest of the world. Economic meltdown in US severely affecting millions of people’s livelihoods throughout the world is an example of PMs’ influential position. The world, in the face of UN, must try to eliminate any threat of turbulences, especially as regards peace & security in PM states, in order to maintain economic stability in the world. For example, Canada whose main export market is US (75% of all exports)[[www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/cis-sic/nsf]] anything affecting stability of US would have fatal consequences for Canada. Same holds true for other PMs. In addition, world statistics on external trade for 2009 show that the EU, US & China are major players in global import & export markets.[[http://goo.gl/zZbs5]]
this view is extremely naive and simply not true. The fact that existing 5Ps were victorious in WW2 and are strong in economic, military, diplomatic, and other terms does not mean that they have been devoted to maintaining global peace, nor does it guarantee that they will be successful and unbiased in the future. For every example of "success" the opposition mentions there are numerous examples of severe violations of authorities given to 5Ps, e.g. Vietnam War launched by the US, Russia-Georgian war in 2008, let alone the Cold War between the Western and the Eastern Blocs that by no means contributed to collective security. 5Ps' leaders are at best accountable to their own voters, at worst - to their political elite, so under status quo their abundance of authority is simply not legitimate.
2) It is unclear what opposition was trying to deliver with this point. Common knowledge facts about economic strengths of 5Ps in no way relate to the issues of legitimacy, accountability, and supra-nation organizations' effectiveness raised in this debate; nor, for that matter, they prove the assertion in the argument's title - "UNSC sanctions become powerless without PM". Even if we assume the statement is true, the opp has never proved why having powerful nations blackmail others via economic mechanisms and push forward their own interests is a legitimate and effective system of global security control.
Argument 3: PM ensures continuity essential to resolving issues of international peace and security
Permanent presence on the UNSC ensures continuity in the resolution of complex international situations which take decades to resolve, much longer than the terms served by non-PMs, e.g. Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Georgia and Cyprus. This continuity in turn allows UNSC to work to resolve longstanding international issues consistently and with decisive force regardless of any undue influence and pressure from other countries that non-PMs may face when seeking reelection. Thus, due to the ‘Cyprusization’ effect where deliberations have lasted for years in which many non-PMs have not been involved, only PMs can effectively address these issues. As they have participated in discussions of these issues before, “they have a continuous record of what has been discussed over the years and in the context of informal consultations, and possess superior information over other members.” [[Rev Int Organ (2011) 6:163–187/DOI 10.1007/s11558-011-9101-1, p. 173]]
Preserving PM is essential to ensuring UNSC has the institutional memory and experience necessary to deal with issues of international peace and security. Only PMs have a continuous record and memory of the UNSC’s work over the years. As UNSC often relies on precedents in its work, non-PMs have either no knowledge of or background on these precedents and need PMs’ help. [[http://bit.ly/paBZ1o, p. 260]]
Thus, to abolish PM would be undermine the work done by UNSC throughout its history because of lack of institutional memory and experience among non-PMs.
The argument is a gross simplification that basically says that PMs should be preserved because otherwise no one remembers what was achieved before and what are the issues at hand. The UN is a massive organization with comprehensive and advanced system of making & archiving records of negotiations, conferences, etc.; thus, the point falls. The "continuity" idea is ridiculous: using their logic, we can also say that Presidents in liberal Western democracies should stay for more than 2 terms because many of reforms they undertake are complex and can take decades to implement. Finally, the opposition has never proven why non-PM countries can't get access to "knowledge of or background on these precedents" using UN databases etc. It is also not likely that all 15 representatives will not get re-elected at the same time.
Moreover, we do not see the problem with not re-elected countries helping to broker the deals they have been mediating as members of UNSC. Cooperation should not stop at transfering the money to UNSC. Goodwill will also benefit them by increaing the probaility of being elected in the next term, so the incentives are present to correct for that.
Even if there would be cases when countries should seek compromise in their decisions, taking into account what the rest of the world feels towards the situation makes it a more legitimate decision in the end, since the process of achieveing the outcome involves everyone.
It is also rather curious Opposition speak of "consistency and decisive force". We have already shown that if anything currently UNSC has consistently been decisive in situations when interests of 5Ps are at stake while sparing their decisiveness in other cases leading to only make decisions on how to restore countries like Rwanda. And although it was mentioned that it was the closed door discussion that lead to it, we see that having more people behind those door doesn't solve anthing. Having no closed door is the best way out
First off, opp would like to draw attention to prop’s failure to present a clearly defined case in support of removal of PM. While excluding veto power from the scope of our debate, prop kept citing examples of failure of UNSC to act caused by the use of veto power (Rwanda, Darfur, Tibet, Chechnya, etc.) but brought no substantive support for abolition of PM per se. Nor did they propose any viable options for reforming UNSC without PM in place. Prop failed to adduce any evidence showing the need for removing PM and to refute our arguments for preserving and expanding PM.
In particular, prop failed as to the following:
1) Scope of debate
Prop went outside the scope of debate it had itself initially set. Thus, prop first stated that issues of veto power and regional representation would not be discussed, but later based all its arguments on examples relating to those two issues. Conversely, as opp we focused our case entirely on harms of removal of PM and benefits of preserving & expanding PM.
2) Lack of understanding of the subject
Prop throughout the debate exhibited superficial knowledge of the subject, e.g. by assuming P5 could single-handedly veto ANY resolution (which is true only for substantive ones) and enjoy unrivalled ability to make decisions (while it still requires 9 votes to pass any UNSC decision).
3) Lack of evidence
Prop’s case mainly consisted of unsupported claims and opinions of their own. Despite opp’s highlighting this issue, prop continued with the practice. We believe this debate is not about making unfounded assertions but about proving one’s case based on reliable sources and realities on the ground. In their fourth point prop summarized and repeated all the same ideas as in their previous 3 points, which again proves prop has no new ideas and evidence to support their case. As opp we still provided a clear response to that argument.
4) No reaction to counterarguments
Prop failed to react to counterarguments containing evidence negating their points. Thus, for example, prop failed to show how removal of PM would prevent regional leaders from using informal methods to influence UNSC decision-making. Prop has clearly shown lack of evidence to support their case, such as their failed attempt to use our reference against us contradicting themselves.
5) Prop’s self-contradictions
Prop presented many self-contradictions, which we have identified throughout our case. For example, stating that regional leaders like India and Brazil wish to join ‘responsible decision process’ while asserting that “merely picking some countries that seem powerful and legitimate enough…is a failed strategy” is both self-contradictory and shows lack of clarity of prop’s position.
As opp we have shown how removal of PM would harm the interests of developing countries, undermine the work done by UNSC throughout its history and worsen global economic conditions. Prop in turn has failed to prove their case as shown above.
What do you think?