After COVID, time to consider a UN parliament and a world federation

Former U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown has been leading calls for the formation of a temporary global government to deal with the dual medical and economic threat posed to the international community by the new coronavirus pandemic. As Covid-19 rages around the globe, there is a limit to the response that can be achieved by individual countries in isolation and it is only natural to believe countries should work together to formulate a response. However, in reality, the ongoing confrontation between the United States and China has shifted from trade friction into arguments over the origins of the virus. This dispute has cast a shadow over discussions aimed at policy coordination that have been taking place in the United Nations Security Council and the World Health Organization.

Considering the circumstances in which the international community now finds itself, it may be time to reaffirm the need for a world federation, which was proposed over 70 years ago, most famously by Albert Einstein. This organization would be a reformed version of the United Nations, but there would be decisive differences between the two bodies. The world federation would be designed based on principles that would go beyond the Westphalian system under which all sovereign states are treated equal, something the United Nations has never managed to surpass, as well as transcending intergovernmentalism.