Annan: “The State is the servant of its people”

Kofi Annan in his UN Secretary-General’s 1999 annual report:

The State is now widely understood to be the servant of its people, and not vice versa. At the same time, individual sovereignty — and by this I mean the human rights and fundamental freedoms of each and every individual as enshrined in our Charter — has been enhanced by a renewed consciousness of the right of every individual to control his or her own destiny.

This was a call for a ‘responsibility to protect’, meaning going in to prevent a new Holocaust.  Other said it should be used to intervene in natural disasters if the government won’t.  Tony Blair took it to mean sovereignty no longer mattered, so it is OK to go to war with Iraq.

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