For a civilization and value system that places such great emphasis on “freedom”, there are still plenty of ways that dissidents can be targeted in the modern West. Freedom has been described as a “hurray word” — a word “with little substantive meaning… an empty signifier in a hegemonic language game, to which we all have to defer”, in the words of Mark Haugaard, political scientist and editor of the Journal of Power.
Contrary to widespread belief, international institutions such as the UN, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) etc., were not created to bring peace and prosperity to the world, but to serve the interests of the West. It is distressing to note, however, that the very victims of these institutions seem totally mesmerized by the high-sounding rhetoric of these organisations, and act as if their survival depends on them.1
The United Nations, an organisation with a richly deserved reputation for corruption and ineffectiveness, undoubtedly needs urgent and extensive reforms. But the powers that control it and its mainly corrupt leading staff will not allow any serious changes that might bring to an end their deleterious influence or affect their careers.
The top posts of some of the world’s most prominent international agencies have fallen vacant and must be filled soon. Three of the agencies that need new or reappointed heads are the World Bank, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).