New Directions for the UN

NEW YORK – The United Nations today leads what seems at times like a double life. On the one hand, pundits criticize it for not solving all the world’s ills. On the other hand, UN member states and people around the world are asking it to do more, in more places, than ever before – a trend that will continue in 2011.

It is not hard to see why. We have only to read the newspaper, turn on the television, or go online to appreciate the sheer scale of the need. Conflicts rage in too many places. Natural disasters strike with greater fury, and in greater numbers, than ever before.

On top of all this, we face a new generation of threats, unlike any in history, which spill across borders and have global reach. No single country or group, however powerful, can deal with them alone. All must work together – in common cause for common solutions – to address challenges like climate change, poverty, and nuclear disarmament.

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