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U.N. Reform

In a speech to the United Nations General Assembly, President George W. Bush strongly urged the U. N. to reform itself:

"The United Nations was created to spread the hope of liberty, and to fight poverty and disease, and to help secure human rights and human dignity for all the world's people. To help make these promises real, the United Nations must be strong and efficient, free of corruption, and accountable to the people it serves. The United Nations must stand for integrity, and live by the high standards it sets for others. And meaningful institutional reforms must include measures to improve internal oversight, identify cost savings, and ensure that precious resources are used for their intended purpose."

Mr. Bush said that if member countries want the United Nations to be respected, they should begin by making sure it is worthy of respect:

"When this great institution's member states choose notorious abusers of human rights to sit on the U.N. Human Rights Commission, they discredit a noble effort, and undermine the credibility of the whole organization."

The founding members of the United Nations knew that international security would increasingly depend on advancing the rights of mankind, and this would require the work of many people and many nations. After committing America to the idea of the U.N. in 1945, President Franklin Roosevelt declared, "The structure of world peace cannot be the work of one man, or one party, or one nation." President Bush says that peace is the responsibility of every nation and every generation:

"With courage and conscience, we will meet our responsibilities to protect the lives and rights of others. And when we do, we will help fulfill the promise of the United Nations."

President Bush said it is the proper task of the United Nations to work to ensure that every human being has a chance to live in freedom and dignity.

The preceding was an editorial reflecting the views of the United States Government.