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Problems of Humanity - Chapter VI - The Problem of International Unity
The true problem of the United Nations is a twofold one: it involves the right distribution of the world's resources so that there may be freedom from want, and it involves also the bringing about of a true equality of opportunity and of education for all men everywhere. The nations which have a wealth of resources are not owners; they are custodians of the world's riches and hold them in trust for their fellowmen. The time will [175] inevitably come when - in the interest of peace and security - the capitalists in the various nations will be forced to realize this and will also be forced to substitute the principle of sharing for the ancient principle (which has hitherto governed them) of greedy grabbing.

There was a time - a hundred years or more ago - when a just distribution of the world's wealth would have been impossible. That is not true today. Statistics exist; computations have been made; investigation has penetrated into every field of the earth's resources and these investigations, computations and statistics have been published and are available to the public. The men in power in every nation know well exactly what food, minerals, oil and other necessities are available for worldwide use upon just and equitable lines. But these commodities are reserved by the nations involved as "talking and bargaining points". The problem of distribution is no longer difficult once the food of the world is freed from politics and from capitalism; it must also be remembered that the means of distribution by sea, rail and air are adequate.

None of this will, however, take place until the United Nations begin to talk in terms of humanity as a whole and not in terms of boundaries, of technical objectives and fears, in terms of the bargaining value of oil, as in the Near East, or in the language of mistrust and suspicion. Russia distrusts the capitalism of the United States and - to a lesser degree - that of Great Britain; South America is rapidly learning to mistrust the United States on the ground of imperialism; both Great Britain and the United States mistrust Russia, on the basis of her spoken word, her use of the veto and her ignorance of western idealism.

Yet it must be remembered that there are statesmen in Great Britain, the United States and Russia who are endeavoring to work for the common man and to speak [176] on his behalf in the conclaves of the nations. As yet selfish opposition has rendered their work futile and the monied interests in many countries have negated their efforts. Russia has no monied interests, but she has vast resources in men and arms and these she plays off against the capitalistic interests. Thus the war goes on, and the man in the street waits hopelessly for a decision which will lead to peace - a peace based on security and right human relations.

To further complicate the problem, it must be borne in mind that the East and the West approach life from different angles. The Eastern approach is negative and subjective; the Western is positive and scientific and, therefore, objective. This is further complicated by the fact that western Europe and eastern Europe look at life and the modern problems from different angles; this makes cooperation difficult and definitely complicates the problems confronting the United Nations. Church and State are not in sympathy; capital and labor carry on a constant war; the man in the street pays the price and waits for justice and freedom.

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