US President Donald Trump’s disregard for institutions and fondness for reckless rhetoric meant that his maiden appearance at the annual UN General Assembly was a closely watched affair.
The US president chose to spare the UN for now from direct verbal attack, but in his extraordinary threats against North Korea, Iran and Venezuela he undermined the very principles and values on which the UN was created.
Meanwhile North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho called U. S. President Donald Trump´s address to the United Nations “the sound of a dog barking”, brushing aside Trump´s remarks that the United States may be forced to “totally destroy” North Korea.
While Mr Trump may not care to understand or accept that, it is nevertheless shocking when he threatens to obliterate an entire country from the speakers’ rostrum in the UN General Assembly, as he did North Korea on Tuesday.
Historians scrambled to find another example of a UN member state, a superpower in this case, threatening to annihilate another member state, an impoverished nation of 25m people. The bellicose rhetoric against Venezuela was also unnerving as the US president only seems to recognise the sovereignty of nations when it suits him.
On Iran, Mr Trump’s hard-line position has doubtless cheered up many conservatives in the US, but they have not been able to provide any proof of Iran violating the nuclear deal painstakingly negotiated by the P5+1. That deal was never meant to be a panacea nor was it supposed to address all of the global community’s concerns about Iran.