By Easwaran Rutnam
Former US President Barack Obama has referred to Sri Lanka in his just released book which has already sold millions of copies.
The reference on Sri Lanka, though very short, is likely to stir controversy in Sri Lanka and overseas.
The book ‘A promised Land’ notes that UN member states lacked either the means or the collective will to reconstruct failing states like Somalia, or prevent ethnic slaughter in places like Sri Lanka.
He is referring to the final stages of the war in Sri Lanka during which time he was US President.
At the time Obama had made a statement in front of the media calling on the LTTE to release trapped civilians and the then Government to stop using heavy weapons.
In his book, Obama also says UN peacekeeping missions, dependent on voluntary troop contributions from member states, were consistently understaffed and ill-equipped.
“At times, the General Assembly devolved into a forum for posturing, hypocrisy, and one-sided condemnations of Israel; more than one U.N. agency became embroiled in corruption scandals, while vicious autocracies like Khamenei’s Iran and Assad’s Syria would maneuver to get seats on the U.N. Human Rights Council. Within the Republican Party, the U.N. became a symbol of nefarious one-world globalism. Progressives bemoaned its impotence in the face of injustice,” the book, read by Daily Mirror, says.
However, he also says that despite all its shortcomings, the UN served a vital function.