Dis-United United Nations

Whenever I hear discussions about UN reform, I immediately start singing Fela Kuti’s song, Beasts of No Nation. Beasts of No Nation is the first song Fela wrote after he was released from prison in Nigeria in 1986. This song speaks to me about what this organization really is. In his own words, a Dis-United United Nations.

Will they listen
? Perhaps as they did in Rwanda! And now in Darfur. And many more other places. You know what I mean.

After Fela came out of prison, many people wanted him to sing about life in prison. He decided, instead, to sing about the outside world where there are “animals who talk like human beings” (at UN conferences)! The outside world, he sings; while accompanied by hypnotic drums, guitars, horns, etc, is a crazy world.

This is what he says (the original song is in Nigerian Pidgin) about the United Nations and our world leaders “who hold meeting in de place dem call United Nations”:

Many leaders as you see them are in disguise
Animals in human skin
Animal puts on a tie
Animal wears agbada
Animal puts on a suit

These leaders in disguise
They hold meetings everywhere, they reach America
They call the place the United Nations
Hear oh another animal talk

What is united inside United Nations?
Who and who is united for United Nations?
There is no unity between Thatcher and Argentina
There is no unity between Reagan and Libya
Israel versus Lebanon
Iran versus Iraq
East West block versus West block East
Dis-United United Nations
One veto vote isequal to 92 (Or more)
What kind of sense is that, it is animal sense!

Meditate on Fela's words. And follow the conversation.

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