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Article 73 in the United Nations Charter is one of two articles in what is referred to as Chapter 11 of the U.N. Charter. I'd like to go back to the actual creation of the Charter itself because it is relevant to what shows up in Article 73. The U.N. was created and the Charter adopted in 1945. At that time, there were only fifty or fewer states in San Francisco adopting the Charter, and the process at that time was largely controlled by the western powers, in particular U.K., France, and the U.S.A. So, in San Francisco they decided to deal with the question of colonization in two separate ways. One would fall under Chapter 11, which concerns what the Charter authors designated Non-Self-Governing-Territories, and the other colonized peoples would fall under Chapter 12 which covers Trust Territories. Now, the real reason why they split the colonial peoples into two separate Chapters was because they wanted to treat the colonial possessions of the winners of the war differently from how they treated the colonial territories of the defeated states in the war. So in other words, colonial possessions of U.S., U.K., France, Spain, Portugal were put in under Chapter 11, and there are two main points to Chapter 11, and in particular in Article 73, which is the first Article in Chapter 11. The two main points are that the administering power of these colonial possessions were allowed to remain administering powers but were placed under a sacred trust to respect the paramount interests of the peoples that they administered. This means that if there is a conflict of interest between the interest of the colonized peoples and the interests of the administering power, the administering power was under a sacred mandate to elevate the interests of the peoples that they administered and not their own administering power and interests. The second point in that Article 73, is that the administering power had to send in annually, reports to the Secretary-General explaining how they were fulfilling this particular mandate, and the mandate, in addition to speaking about the paramount interests of the colonized peoples and the sacred trust that was put on the administering power essentially said that the administering power had to do everything possible to move the colonized peoples towards self-government. Now if you look at Chapter 12, which applied to the colonial possessions of Germany and Japan, there they said that that the administering powers which by then were no longer Japan and Germany because the U.N. removed their power over their earlier colonial possessions and invested in the U.N., which in turn then delegated out to chosen states, such as the U.S. over Micronesia, for example. In Chapter 12, the mandate was that the administering power had to prepare the peoples there for independence. So you see the difference between the two chapters. First of all, Hawaii was placed under Chapter 11, i.e., under the chapter that governs the conduct of administering states over Non-Self-Governing-Territories, and as such the U.S. had the Sacred Trust's duty to advance interests of the inhabitants of Hawaii and move them towards self-government. Now-- oh, and also to send reports on an annual basis to the Secretary-General to show how it was fulfilling its mandate. Now, as I mentioned that mandate to move peoples in the Non-Self-Governing-Territories towards self-government was put in the Charter in 1945, when most of the power in the U.N. at that time resided still in the colonial powers. But as the years progressed and more and more territories decolonized in Asia and Africa, and states such as India, and Burma, and so on, entered the General Assembly and found that they had much in common with the Soviet Bloc countries, which also were for total decolonization, they developed a majority in the General Assembly that were not content with the notion of mere self-government under Chapter 11. So by 1960, that bloc managed to get adopted by the General Assembly by a vote of 89 to 0, with about 10 abstentions, of which the U.S. was one, along with the U.K., France, etc, but the Declaration that the third world socialist bloc managed to get adopted at the General Assembly in 1960, rectified that defect in Chapter 11 of the Charter, because it said regardless of whether peoples were covered by Chapter 11 or by Chapter 12, that is regardless of whether they were Non-Self-Governing-Territories that belonged to the western powers or they were inhabitants of the Trust Territories, administered by the U.N. or on behalf of the U.N., that difference no longer mattered. They were all entitled to pursue independence. And that happened in 1960. As we know the United States, in 1959, that is one year and one year only, before this Declaration, held a plebiscite in Hawaii where the question posed was, do you inhabitants of Hawaii wish to opt for statehood, or wish to remain a territory of the United States. Now I'd like to mention two or three major points in connection with that. First of all, the U.S., being an active member of the U.N., could tell that from 1945 until 1960, there was this really strong surge for something more that just self-government. So they could predict that sooner or later, there would be a demand to grant full independence. So surely, they would have understood that they should have the people in Hawaii vote what they want before they automatically are entitled to independence, hence the vote, in my view, was rushed through in 1959. Secondly, the question posed, limited the choice to would you like to be a territory of the U.S. where you don't even have a vote in how your lives are governed or would you prefer to be a state where you in fact have some vote over political matters, but absent from that choice, was the choice of independence. So that's the first major flaw in that vote. Rather the second flaw, the first flaw was what I suggest, the U.S. rushed this vote knowing that anytime now, a Declaration on the Granting of Independence was about to go through the U.N. The third flaw is the suffrage, meaning who were allowed to vote. So, if the U.S. colonized Hawaii in 1898 when it annexed Hawaii then there are all kinds of arguments as to who was entitled to undo that unlawful deed-- the people who lived there in 1898, or maybe the people who lived there and were citizens of the Republic of Hawaii, but better yet, it probably should be the people who lived in Hawaii, and were subjects, i.e. citizens of the Hawaiian Kingdom in 1893 when Queen Lili'uokalani was overthrown-- but certainly not anybody fresh off the ship in 1960.
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