Sir: There are many who would disagree with John Gordon's belief (letter, 12 May), all too common within the United Nations' secretariats, that the UN's current shortcomings can be resolved only by a stunning display of leadership from the member states. This is rather like the head office/management team of a global company shrugging its shoulders and waiting for its board (or shareholders even) to provide it with vision, direction and co-ordination.
It is frustrating for those of us who can clearly see the potential of the UN and who know the power of organisational transformation, to listen to senior executives within the secretariats professing powerlessness, when they are the very people who, together, could be leading the public transformation of the system by virtue of their unique expertise and power to do so.
The world desperately needs more effectiveness by the UN, even more than it needs the EU. The UN does not need a new charter, which still holds good: it needs new executive vision, sense of mission and goals aligned with the charter and aligned with the expectations of the global citizens which it serves. I can find no greater earthly cause to serve than the revitalisation of this body for the future well-being of the world. It is the UN's 50th birthday this year and Britain helped to set it up: it needs our support in setting goals for the next 25 years, not our blame.