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The push for the Law of the Sea Treaty

By Michelle Malkin  •  October 2, 2007 11:25 AM

I’ve gotten many e-mails about the Senate’s push for the Law of the Sea Treaty. Frank Gaffney has followed the issue and wrote about it here in 2004, calling it a “very Kerry treaty.” He has a piece out today in the Washington Times with the lowdown on the latest fight:

If Americans have learned anything about the United Nations over the last 50 years, it is that this “world body” is, at best, riddled with corruption and incompetence. At worst, its bureaucracy, agencies and members are overwhelmingly hostile to the United States and other freedom-loving nations, most especially Israel.

So why on earth would the United States Senate possibly consider putting the U.N. on steroids by assenting to its control of seven-tenths of the world’s surface?

Such a step would seem especially improbable given such well-documented fiascoes as: the U.N.-administered Iraq Oil-for-Food program; investigations and cover-ups of corrupt practices at the organization’s highest levels; child sex-slave operations and rape squads run by U.N. peacekeepers; and the absurd, yet relentless, assault on alleged Israeli abuses of human rights by majorities led by despotic regimes in Iran, Cuba, Syria and Libya.

Nonetheless, the predictable effect of U.S. accession to the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea — better known as the Law of the Sea Treaty (or LOST) — would be to transform the U.N. from a nuisance and laughingstock into a world government: The United States would confer upon a U.N. agency called the International Seabed Authority (IA) the right to dictate what is done on, in and under the world’s oceans. Doing so, America would become party to surrender of immense resources of the seas and what lies beneath them to the dictates of unaccountable, nontransparent multinational organizations, tribunals and bureaucrats.

This does not sound good.

Looks like the Bush administration is deluded or clueless on the issue, or both. Gaffney continues:

In the case of LOST, such a supranational arrangement is particularly enabled by the treaty’s sweeping environmental obligations. State parties promise to “protect and preserve the marine environment.” Since ashore activities — from air pollution to runoff that makes its way into a given nation’s internal waters — can ultimately affect the oceans, however, the U.N.’s big power grab would also allow it to exercise authority over land-based actions of heretofore sovereign nations.

Unfortunately, the Senate has been misled on this point by the Bush administration. Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte claimed in testimony before the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee last Thursday that the treaty has “no jurisdiction over marine pollution disputes involving land-based sources.” He insisted, “That’s just not covered by the treaty.” Worse yet, State Department Legal Adviser John Bellinger, said, “[LOST] clearly does not allow regulation over land-based pollution sources. That would stop at the water’s edge.”

Guess who’ll end up paying:

…Scarcely more appetizing is LOST’s empowering of a U.N. agency to impose what amount to international taxes. To provide such an entity with a self-financing mechanism and the authority to distribute the ocean’s wealth in ways that suit the majority of its members and its international bureaucracy is a formula for unaccountability and corruption on an unprecedented scale.

To date, the full malevolent potential of the Law of the Sea Treaty has been more in prospect than in evidence. If the United States accedes to LOST, however, it is predictable that the treaty’s agencies will: wield their powers in ways that will prove very harmful to American interests; intensify the web of sovereignty-sapping obligations and regulations promulgated by this and other U.N. entities; and advance inexorably the emergence of supranational world government.

Twenty-five years ago, President Ronald Reagan declined to submit our sovereignty to the United Nations and rejected the Law of the Sea Treaty. If anything, there are even more compelling reasons today to prevent the U.N.’s big power grab.

I’m with Reagan.

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