"If I were redoing the Security Council today, I'd have one permanent member because that's the real reflection of the distribution of power in the world," he said during an interview with National Public Radio's Juan Williams.
"And that one member would be, John Bolton?" Williams asked.
"The United States," Bolton responded.
There is a growing sense of crisis as the United Nations prepares for history's biggest gathering of world leaders during the 2005 World Summit to be held from 14th to 16th September. Secretary-General Kofi Annan wants the leaders to take action to tackle poverty, reform the United Nations and address global security. But the 191 member states are deeply divided on what the summit should accomplish, and negotiators have not agreed on a single key issue.
Seven issues are snagging talks: poverty and development, terrorism, collective action to prevent genocide, disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation, a new Human Rights Council to replace the discredited Human Rights Commission, whose members include representatives of the worst torturers, a new Peace-building Commission to help countries emerging from conflict; and the overhaul of U.N. management.
In March, Annan laid out his blueprint In Larger Freedom for the most sweeping changes to the United Nations administration in its 60-year history along with proposals to achieve U.N. development goals that world leaders adopted at the Millennium Summit in September 2000.
General Assembly President Jean Ping then began consultations with the 191 member states to turn Annan's vision into a document for leaders to adopt at the summit marking the world body's 60th anniversary. His first draft was issued in June and the last - 39 pages long - in early August.
The United States submitted hundreds of proposed amendments after every draft but they were never made public.
When US ambassador John Bolton sent every ambassador similar amendments to the latest text, the Bush administration came under intense criticism, drawing accusations it was entering the negotiations late and was trying to sabotage the talks.
President Bush appointed Bolton as US ambassador to the UN only one month ago on 1st August. Former US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Chas Freeman described Boltonís appointment to the post as "the equivalent of dropping a neutron bomb on the organization."
John R. Bolton, a former Undersecretary of State for arms control, has built a reputation for public disdain for international treaties and organisations, including the UN.
He told a conservative audience 11 years ago: "The [UN] secretariat building in New York has 38 storeys. If it lost 10 storeys, it wouldn't make a bit of difference."
Although his previous job at the state department had nothing to do with it, Mr Bolton asked to be allowed to sign an official letter in 2001 withdrawing the US from the treaty establishing the International Criminal Court.
More recently, Mr Bolton led Washington's campaign to oust Mohamed ElBaradei from his post as the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, because he had not ruled Iran in violation of its international obligations.
In 2001, Mr Bolton also scuttled a protocol intended to strengthen the Biological Weapons Convention, declaring it was "dead and is not going to be resurrected".
"He was the administration's most vocal critic of arms control agreements," said Lee Feinstein, a foreign policy strategist during the Clinton administration, who works at the Council on Foreign Relations think tank. "It's interesting to pick someone like Bolton at a time when the [UN] secretary general has made a decision to address a number of US concerns."
Nonetheless, many ambassadors remained hopeful they could agree on a serious document for their leaders to adopt.
March 6, 2000: National Public Radio: John Bolton is one of the two guests of the Talk of the Nation radio program about the implications of Pinochet's release
March 8, 2005: The Guardian: "US names hawk as ambassador to UN", by Julian Borger
March 14, 2005: Inter Press Service: "The Bolton Nomination: Unipolarity Reaffirmed", by Jim Lobe
August 1, 2005: The Guardian: "Bush bypasses Senate to install neo-con at UN", by James Sturcke
September 5, 2005: AP: "U.N. Members Divided Over Summit Document", by Edith M. Lederer
Worldwatch Institute: "Upcoming World Summit Offers Rare Opportunity to Redesign the U.N. for the Future ", by Hilary French, September 8, 2005
Worldwatch Institute: "Mixed Progress in Reaching Millennium Development Goals" , Vital Signs Facts, September 8, 2005
Boycott Bush is hosted by For Mother Earth | Webmaster