NEW YORK, Sep 19 (IPS) – The high-level section of the UN Normal Meeting (UNGA) is known for its fiery speeches and the colourful personalities assembled within the GA Corridor. However rather more goes on past the corridor itself –the frenzy of the press within the broadcast vehicles, safety personnel on each sidewalk, army aides in gown uniforms, and an infinite spherical of receptions and events of each type.
Among the finest-known occasions on this huge theater is the showy motorcade that brings the President of the USA to the UN. Bikes from the New York police division, fifty or extra in all, roar alongside prematurely of the primary presidential limousines. Police barricades line the streets. The sirens and roar of the engines reverberate wherever they go.
The motorcade makes an amazing impression because it approaches UN Headquarters. No different chief comes even near such a mighty entry scene. The UN itself faces non permanent paralysis because the Presidential safety system takes over.
As soon as, I used to be standing on the nook of First Avenue and forty fifth Road once I noticed a high-level UN official hurrying up. A policeman stopped him as he tried to get previous the barricade and cross the avenue.
“Nobody crosses the road now,” stated the cop. “However I’m Underneath Secretary Normal Peter Hansen,” the person replied, “and I’ve a gathering in ten minutes with the Secretary Normal.”
“Sorry, buddy,” stated the cop, “I’ve my orders and nobody, not even God Himself, goes throughout this avenue till I say so.” Hansen needed to await no less than twenty minutes till the US President arrived and disappeared inside. Then the Underneath Secretary-Normal was lastly allowed to go throughout and keep it up together with his enterprise.
The impression made by a grand entry like that is well-known on the planet of politics. Throughout the colonial period in India, the British Viceroy famously entered town of Delhi on grand events seated together with his spouse on an unlimited, elaborately-bedecked elephant, accompanied by a complete cavalcade of different elephants, carrying maharajas and senior British officers.
The grandest of those occasions had been reserved for the investiture of the British sovereign and had been often known as darbars. Right this moment, bikes create the awe and the President will get a easy journey in an armored limousine.
Lots of of lunches, dinners and grand receptions happen in the course of the high-level interval. Probably the most uncommon occasion I ever attended was a reception held within the Central Park Zoo, in honor of Denis Sassou Nguesso, the President of the Republic of Congo.
The Wildlife Conservation Society, operator of the zoo, placed on the occasion to “thank” the Congolese strongman for accepting a big sum of cash to “defend” part of the Congolese rainforest. The reception came about open air, across the well-known sea lion pool. There have been African drums, costumed dancers, musicians enjoying flutes, bright-colored spotlights and a really restricted visitor record.
As I strolled across the pool, chatting with a couple of of the ambassadors current, I observed a person standing at a ways from the others, apparently by himself. I walked over to talk to him when all of a sudden 4 heavily-armed safety guards jumped out of the shadows and confronted me, their automated weapons pointed menacingly.
I quickly realized I used to be heading in direction of President Sassou Nguesso himself, in his army gown uniform. His scowl turned to a smile and he waved away the guards, who disappeared once more into the bushes as I stepped ahead. After some pleasantries about defending rainforests, I took my depart. From Fifth Avenue, as I headed residence, I may nonetheless hear the drums and see the orange spotlights.
What had been the ocean lions pondering, I questioned?
Jim Paul was longtime Government Director of International Coverage Discussion board, based mostly throughout the avenue from UN Headquarters. He was founding father of the NGO Working Group on the Safety Council and the Working Group on Meals and Starvation. He was an editor of the Oxford Companion to Politics of the World and his most up-to-date e-book titled Of Foxes and Chickens: oligarchy and international energy within the UN Safety Council.
IPS UN Bureau
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