One-Off, Red Flag on African Elections for UN, Anderson's Farewell
January 11 -- When American diplomat Brooke D. Anderson was
tapped to move from the US Mission to the UN in New York to become
deputy chief of the National Security Agency in Washington, another
Ambassador on the UN Security Council commiserated with Inner City
Press what a “big loss to USUN” it would be.
the Waldorff towers, Ms. Anderson was bid farewell by many of her
past and recent Security Council colleagues, for examples the
Permanent Representatives of Gabon, Brazil and Russia, previous
member Austria and new member India. Susan Rice said how much she
would miss Brooke, then to party on.
talk turned to
the UN and
African elections, the topic of a closed door briefing
earlier on Monday. “The UN is not supposed to be a supra national
body,” the Permanent Representative of the Democratic Republic of
Congo complained. “At some point a red flag will be raised.”
serving on the Council, said that Laurent Gbagbo had
brought about the beginning of the end of his command in Cote d'Ivoire
by basing his
power in recent years on UN Security Council resolutions “instead
of the Ivorian constitution.”
Permanent and the other wanna-be, agreed that Ivory Coast would be
the last time that UN would be in the position of certifying an
election or its winner. The phrase used in the Council was sui
generis, a Latin phrase meaning "one of a kind" much used with
regard to Kosovo.
Brooke Anderson, sui generis, at the UN stakeout
Inner City Press had asked the UN's part time Special Advisor on
Africa if he was every consulted, by Lynn Pascoe of the Department of
Political Affairs before his briefing on African elections, or with
regard to Cote d'Ivoire. No, he said, I specialize in economic and
on Ivorian cocoa customs revenue? He replied that Ban Ki-moon's envoy
Choi Young-jin is doing a “great” job.
Permanent Representative who had seen the question and answer rolled
his eyes and asked, “What else is he going to say?”
who dares speak
truth to power, and say when a policy is wrong? The US abstained from
the General Assembly resolution against arbitrary executions, and
couldn't or wouldn't explain why. One surmised it concerned drones,
but the official line, repeated Monday night, vaguely referred to
“misreadings of international humanitarian law.”
Monday night was Ms. Anderson's (at least temporary) successor, David
Dunn. He's a 32 year State Department veteran who served, among other
things, as US Ambassador to Zambia and Togo.
explained that the formal replacement is
“pending in Congress,” as is that for the long vacant position at
USUN for management and budget. It has been filled for some time by
Joseph Melrose, observed by Inner City Press working the General
Assembly floor at 4 am on December 23-24, 2010 on the budget.
statement on Cote d'Ivoire was agreed to and read out by Bosnia's
Deputy Permanent Representative at 6 pm on Monday. Since Ms. Anderson
was in charge of negotiating the text, its adoption presumptively had
something to do with, and was a tribute to, her farewell reception
which began mere minutes later.
in no particular order her first
stakeout (on Guinea-Bissau), a
on Cote d'Ivoire, an initial dispute with USUN whether she
would be the Mission's Number Three or Four official (the former, as
Rosemary DiCarlo did not end of overlapping with Alejandro Wolff,
with whom one would still like to speak about the 2009
the ICC's Luis Moreno Ocampo about Omar al Bashir's billions, minutes
as Wikileaked classified by Mr. Wolff) -- and the response,
ultimately true, that Ms. Anderson didn't care so much for titles. We
wish her well.
* * *
UN Council Meets on 24 African Elections, Shrunken
10 -- Elections in Africa this year, and whether and
how the UN should be involved in them, was the only topic agreed on
for this month's forward looking or “horizon” meeting of the UN
takes place amid the chaos of the
Cote d'Ivoire election, where UN
envoy Choi Young-jin declared Alassane Ouattara the winner, leading
to protests in the Security Council by permanent member Russia.
advance of UN
political affairs chief Lynn Pascoe providing a closed door briefing
to the Council, one Council member told Inner City Press that while
UN technical assistance to elections is not viewed as controversial,
being as involved as in Cote d'Ivoire would be a subject of debate.
Inner City Press a list of 24 elections in Africa this year:
including Chad (for which no request for UN assistance is expected,
following the ejection of the UN peacekeeping mission last year),
Republic (later this month), Democratic Republic of
Congo (in connection with which the UN peacekeeping mission may be
further slimmed down at President Kabila's request),
son), Gabon (Jammeh), Ivory Coast (legislative), Benin, Cameroon,
Cape Verde, Liberia, Guinea, Djibouti, Madagascar, Mauritania,
Nigeria, Niger, Seychelles, South Africa, South Sudan, Sao Tome,
Uganda, Zambia and of course Zimbabwe.
Pascoe's briefing included a wider range of issues, which some
members protested. This time, the Bosnian presidency limited the
issues in advance to just this one.
UN's Ban & Mugabe, UN electoral flubs not shown
d'horizon” of issues threatening international peace and security
might have included, for example, the violent protests in Tunisia and
Algeria. One assumes that the UN's Department of Political Affairs is
not blinded to that. But the Security Council will not be hearing
about or discussing these issues.
Council be discussing Sudan, even after 33 deaths in Abyei over the
weekend. One member predicted the Council will wait for initial
results of the South Sudan referendum. Watch this site.