Unofficial transcript of press encounter with Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch Brown at UN Headquarters
18 August 2006 – Deputy Secretary-General: I just want to say a few remarks first, and then open to take any questions you have….
Deputy Secretary-General:… The core thing that capitals have to get over the hump on, is the character and purpose of the force which is consistent with the resolution, which is that it is not an offensive force, it’s not going to go in there and attempt large scale disarmament. Rather it is going to police the political agreement which triggers disarmament, called for under the resolution and therefore it will make a prudent use of force. It calls very clearly in the rules of engagement, as it did in the resolution itself, that where combatants forcefully resist a demand from UNIFIL or from the Lebanese army to disarm, UNIFIL will then exercise use of force, if it has to, to force that disarmament. I think we have been very clear on that, this is not going to be a force which can be characterized as a force of occupation, or a force of offensive effort to disarm Hezbullah, but is going to provide Israel with that security guarantee that this political agreement which will ultimately call for disarmament, [it] does already in the resolution, will be enforceable….
How’s that again? This force will not affect disarmament of Hizballah, but will call for the disarmament of Hizballah? Great. But you don’t need a UN force for that. I can save you billions of dollars: I’ll call for the disarmament of Hizballah for you right now, from right here in my offices on the 113th floor of the Jihad Watch Towers in Secure Undisclosed Locationville. No, don’t thank me. I know what I have just done is completely ineffective — just like this UN force.
Seriously, this is just not strong enough. They’ll use force if Hizballah resists, and yet they will not make an offensive effort to disarm Hizballah. It’s very easy to see how this will become a recipe for inaction and impotence.