Cheat-Seeking Missles

Thursday, September 28, 2006

The Next Kofi?

You're looking at who just might be Kofi Annan's replacement when the Sec Gen steps down in December, as required by the UN Charter.

He's Ban Ki-moon, South Korea's foreign minister. There was a day when that would be good news for the US, but not any more. Korea is all over the place on foreign policy and remarkably ungrateful for the fact that US intervention is the only reason why they exist today.

Here's the BBC's report on Ki-moon's progress:
The 15 members of the Security Council voted on seven candidates in their third secret ballot on Thursday.

Mr Ban comfortably beat Shashi Tharoor, the Indian UN Undersecretary General for public information who came second. ...

Other candidates come from Thailand, Jordan and Sri Lanka. Latvia's president and an Afghan candidate entered the contest recently.

In the latest vote delegates indicated whether they "encouraged", or "discouraged" a candidate, or whether they had no opinion.
Another secret ballot will be held Monday, this one using colored paper. No word on when the white smoke will appear.

Two candidates, Jordan's Prince Zeid al-Hussein and Afghanistan's Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, would be the first Muslim Sec Gen if appointed.

I heard a brief interview with ki-Moon the other day; he praised himself eloquently. Tharoor had a lovely voice, but was clearly genetic UN material. Latvia's president made a case for having a woman Sec Gen to inspire "all the girls" -- but she's getting swept away by the drive to have the next Sec Gen from Asia. Afghanistan's candidate sounded great, but with US and NATO forces on his home turf, he's got zero chance.

Once the Security Council decides on a preferred candidate, the name goes to the General Assembly for a confirmation vote. Read the candidates' bios here; don't expect anything revolutionary.

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