Suppose the leaders of every nation on Earth were well-intended and sincerely sought the best for their people. That's an impossible ideal, of course, but just say for the sake of argument that it were true.
Even under those circumstances, an international organization such as the U.N. would be of extremely limited value. That's because even rightly motivated leaders and countries often have very different priorities and goals. So trying to get them to agree on a particular course of action can be a bit like "herding cats."
Unfortunately, we live in a world of nations with leaders who in many cases are not rightly motivated. Some plunder their citizens' wealth either through graft or confiscatory taxes. Others oppress their people through violence or unjust imprisonment.
One such nation is Communist North Korea. It cruelly denies its people the most basic liberties, sending many to what amount to concentration camps and killing others for the slightest perceived infractions.
It is hard to know just what the United States or any nation can do to promote freedom in North Korea. The country is believed, after all, to have nuclear weapons - in large part because of ineffective U.N. oversight that failed to keep North Korea from developing such weapons.
Sadly, we saw the U.N.'s ineffectiveness once again in a recent attempt to confront North Korea over its nuclear weapons program. The U.N. compiled a report on the country's violations of sanctions related to nuclear weapons. But when the time came to rebuke North Korea, its ally, Communist China, simply forbade the release of the U.N. report.
That is a big part of the trouble with the U.N. Even dictatorial countries have a say over what actions the world body will take. So North Korea, perhaps the most despicable regime on Earth, is getting a pass.
That is another reminder that the United States should never put its faith in the U.N.