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Waiting for the U.N.

The Obama administration embraces international paralysis.

Apr 30, 2012, Vol. 17, No. 31 • By JOHN YOO
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The Obama administration’s reliance on the U.N. limits American power and only avoids the hard choices necessary to protect our national security and maintain world order. America need not toss aside the U.N., which still provides a useful forum for discussion and debate. But a president should ignore it when authoritarian nations try to veto wars that are necessary to preserve the peace. Like the League of Nations before it, the U.N. can only provide a false sense of security in the face of gathering threats. A Republican president can promise a new birth of American leadership that will maintain an international order built on free markets, liberal democracy, and peaceful trade, and which can take preventive action to stop threats such as Syria and Iran.

John Yoo is a law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. A former Bush Justice Department official, he is coauthor of the just-released Taming Globalization: International Law, the U.S. Constitution, and the New World Order (Oxford).

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