Can a Divided UN Help us Fight Terrorism?

President Obama came before the United Nations hat in hand this week and got it to commit to anti-terror action, as the Security Council unanimously approved his foreign fighters resolution. He should also use the UN to promote the “antidotes” to violence he spelled out – entrepreneurship, civil society, education and youth – as part of “an architecture of counterterrorism.”

In fact, the UN has been underused in counterterrorism. Almost ten years after former secretary-general Kofi Annan declared that the UN must up the ante in counterterrorism to stay relevant, the famously unwieldy body has yet to heed his call to tackle transnational security threats.

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A Fish Net and a Boat

Cyclone Nargis ravaged Myanmar in May of 2008, wiping out the Southeast Asian country’s western coast.  The opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi was still under house arrest, and the military Myanmar government, apprehensive about the waves of incoming foreign aid workers, allowed only Asian passport-holders to enter the country for post-disaster reconstruction work.

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UNDP Doctor Treats One Village at a Time

Bogale, Myanmar, 10 June 2008 — Every morning since Cyclone Nargis made landfall, Doctor Ye Lwin has been getting up at five o’clock. After morning prayers, he starts seeing patients who have travelled a long way to come to the makeshift clinic UNDP has set up at its Bogale township office.

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Up to One Fifth of the World’s Children Have Mental Problems

An estimated 10 to 20 percent of children worldwide have one or more mental or behavioral problems. Many disorders commonly found among adults, such as depression, can begin during childhood, the World Health Organization reports. Categories specific to childhood and adolescence include disorders of psychological development, including dyslexia and autism, as well as behavioral and emotional disorders, such as attention deficit/hyper activity and conduct disorders.

Continue to read here (UN Chronicle, No. 2, 2002)