A view of the UN from Latin America

Miguel D’Escoto, former president of the United Nations General Assembly and former foreign minister of Nicaragua, tells Democracy Now!:

Palestine has not been given statehood. And when the split of Palestine for a Jewish state and an Arab state, when that was decided upon—not really decided upon, when that decision was imposed, with all kinds of arm-twisting and the threats and the intimidations that the United States calls “negotiations”—you have to change your lexicon. When they say “democracy,” it usually means somebody who is very obedient to whatever they say. Then they give you the good housekeeping of approval, and they put “democracy.” If they don’t like you, then they say you are radical, and then they escalate the term to show—so it’s very difficult.

The United States claims that it has the right to rule the world, because it did so much to save the world from—in the Second World War. I don’t know how many Americans died in that war, but I imagine it’s infinitely, infinitely less than the 20 million people of the Soviet Union who died, more than 20 million. But regardless of that, the war was a great economic boom for the United States. The New Deal did not pull the United States out of its economic crisis; it was the war. And war has been, on many occasions, a business. They are very much into the business of death.

And that’s why, one time, when you talked to me over the phone many years ago, and President Reagan had died, and I never will forget that you said to me, “What do you think?” Well, you know, President Reagan is a human being. He’s got his wife, and he’s got his people who love him. And I feel sorry when people die, no matter who they are. And I pray to God that he receives them, in spite of the fact, I said, that he was the butcher of my people, a pathological killer. But in the United States, they are accustomed not to recognize their killers.