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Then comes 2003: invasion, Shock and Awe, the removal of 20,000 people from the Government—in fact the abolition of government—and fundamentalist anarchy that hardly deserves to be called civil war. A war launched and fanned by the occupation authorities, which— discommoded by such resistance as there was—fomented Sunni/Shia conflicts by covert means. 

The British Ambassador to the United Nations at the time of the invasion, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, was interviewed about Chilcot in the same BBC programme as Bremer. 

"BBC: The finding is that the UK undermined the Security Council's authority while taking the guise of being supporters of the UN process. As UN Ambassador at that time were you aware that that was the case? 

"Greenstock: It wasn't the case. I think Chilcot is being too categorical. For a start, where's the US in that statement? We were working very closely with the US and Spain and Bulgaria. It wasn't just the UK on its own. Secondly, you can say that the authority of the Security Council is undermined whenever the Permanent Five are in disagreement with each other. Because it's an inter-Governmental process. And the Security Council can't act if the Members of the Security Council don't agree. It does a huge amount of good when they agree, it falls apart when they don't agree. Thirdly, what was Saddam Hussein doing but undermining the authority of the Security Council for the 12 years up to 2003? And the Security Council were doing nothing about it. So that judgment has to be qualified." 

The last point is an obvious absurdity. Saddam had no responsibility for the conduct of the United Nations. He was its victim. It determined to destroy that state of which he was leader and he did his best to hold the state together despite it. He resisted the wanton destruction of the viable state of Iraq by the Great Powers of the world organised as the Security Council. 

The United Nations is a Great Power system of world organisation. Insofar as it is meaningful to describe it as a system of international law, it exists only for use against minor states. The Great Powers who operate the system are not themselves subject to its operation. and the system can only be applied against the minor Powers by agreement between the five Great Powers. 

The system was set up in 1945 by the two Greatest Powers of the time, Russia and America, and by Britain which had reduced itself to a secondary Power by bungling its second World War of the half century. France and China were awarded Great Power status within the system, though neither had at the time the actual power to merit it. 

Neither America nor Russia would have agreed to the establishment of an international system which could assert any degree of authority over it. 

Russia had been expelled from the League of Nations in December 1939 by Britain and France because of steps it had taken against Finland to strengthen the defences of Leningrad. Britain and France had declared war on Germany in September but by December it was Russia they were trying to make war on. Russia in 1945, having won the War on Germany that Britain had started, ensured that there could be no repetition by the UN of the League of Nations carry-on against it. And America had long been on record against being part of any international system which might conceivably assert authority over it. It would recognise no limits to its own sovereignty either at home or abroad. 

The United Nations that was established in 1945 was the only possible United Nations. What Greenstock pretends to see as a defect in it is actually its essence. 

As the UN was being established in 1945, Germany was being defeated. Britain, after withdrawing from France in June 1940, manoeuvred during the next year to bring about a German/ Russian War. That happened in 1941. Britain then bided its time for three years as the German/Russian War worked itself out, only returning to the European battlefield under American pressure in 1944, after the German armies had been defeated in Russia. 

The "Grand Alliance", proclaimed by Churchill after he got Russia to under-take the task of defeating Germany, had no integrity. It could not outlast the defeat of Germany. Churchill saw Russia as the fundamental enemy of what he considered civilisation, and Germany as an accidental enemy caused by foreign policy bungling. 

War between the victors over Germany was therefore implicit in the defeat of Germany, and it was on that assumption that the structure of the UN was formed. That structure ensured that the UN would play no part in the world conflict brought about by the outcome of Britain's decision to make war on Germany over the trivial issue of Danzig, and its strategy of 'spreading the war' after its failure to make good, by its own resources, its declaration of war on Germany. 

The World War, for which Russia's defeat of Germany cleared the way, would not have had the United Nations as a participant. That war did not happen, not because the UN kept the peace, but because Russia built nuclear weapons so quickly after the Americans. 

Greenstock says that the Security Council does good when its Great Powers act together. It would be closer to the mark to say that something is wrong when they act together. 

They acted together in 1991 because the Russian State was in collapse and could not tend to its interests in the world. The result was a David and Goliath war, in which Goliath had the sling-shot as well as everything else, and twelve years of torment was inflicted on the people of Iraq by Sanctions and Bombings in the hope of getting them to rise against the regime. 

The Great Powers acted together against Libya in 2011 and made it a shambles of fundamentalist militias. It would not be unreasonable to conclude that the Security Council can only act destructively. 

In 2003 the French—the stinking cheese-eating surrender monkeys— vetoed Security Council action against Iraq until the UN Weapons Inspectors gave a definite report, so the US and UK acted destructively on their own. If the French had not vetoed Security Council action, there is little reason to suppose that the outcome would have been much different for the Iraqis. 

The Chilcot Report is relevant to current British politics. It is surprisingly condemnatory of the actions of the Labour Government, within its terms of reference. We recall Chilcot as being associated with Blair in Northern Ireland and we did not expect him to say that Blair's Labour Government had fought an unnecessary war, a war of choice, in breach of the supposed international authority which it pretended to accept, and that it wilfully misrepresented the French position in order to justify itself in doing so. 

Greenstock says that he restored UN authority a few months after Blair had flouted it. We assume he is referring to the UN legitimising of the Occupation, after it became an accomplished fact. A lot of good that did for the Iraqis. 

When the United Nations acts, it is the United States that acts. The United States can act destructively in the world with or without UN authority and the UN can do nothing about it and, when the UN acts, it acts as the United States. 

The United States can act as the United Nations when the other four Vetoist Powers consent. The UK is almost always willing to consent, and France is mostly. Russia only consented when it had fallen into disarray, and, now that it is getting itself together again, it is likely to be more careful in future. China is not part of the Euro-American world and doesn't seem greatly concerned about what it does to itself. It has restored its absolute independence after a century of European destructive activity. It can defend itself. In the post-1945 world, that means that it has the power to obliterate any state that interferes with it. 

Under these circumstances the United Nations is nothing more than a pretentious sham.