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The United Nations is being bled by the American arbitrary action not to pay its obligatory debt and living through borrowed money from its peacekeeping fund.

Still the sole superpower got whatever it wanted out of the Security Council such as the unanimous resolution on Iraq. That was ultimate power superbly used. Just before it adjourned for Winter holidays the congress deprived President Clinton of money congress leaders promised him to settle overdue payments.

The US owes the United Nations, and to add insult to injury, it also rejected additional contribution to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and this time because of the anti-abortion lobbying; no longer because of lack of reforms at the United Nations.

Malaysian politicians do not complain about what Clinton does much less have the audacity to take steps to move a motion in parliament demanding him to apologise or resign for something he said or purportedly to have stated.

The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad, was accused of being anti-Semitic. He has said he was misquoted. Why then two dozen congressmen most of whom probably have never been outside their congressional districts, much less to Southeast Asia and Malaysia are making much ado about nothing?

While we must be mindful and carefully monitor the reading of congressional temperature we must not be seen to be overreacting and run about the field they have land-mined.

We must send these Congressmen a strong message about the pitfall and consequence of flagrantly interfering in the internal affairs of a friendly nation.

I am impressed and proud by the unanimous reaction of all political parties and the solidarity of the Malaysian people.

I can hardly believe this "American" presumption and arrogance.

Imagine Mohamad Noh bin Omar, MP for Tanjong Karang and his friends tabling a resolution against Clinton asking him to resign or to apologise for saying he has never met Paula Jones despite the fact that Paula Jones seemed to have accurately described Clinton's "male member" to back up her accusation or over what Clinton says about Saddam Hussein and the Iraqi people.

Imagine Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim sending Datuk Zahid Hamidi to investigate Exxon's, or John Huang's donations to Clinton's presidential campaign fund. Wouldn't the Americans resent it?

Fortunately for human beings these meddling congressmen do not go around brandishing American nukes!

I worked in the congress for a year between 1960-1, and I never heard anything so callous, so conceited as this resolution not even from the notorious members of ultraconservative John Birch society.

In any event the congress is too mature for this sort of callow game. I am grateful for that.

The good thing is the Clinton administration is not involved in this attempt to subvert Malaysians and the nation. Even the sole superpower knows the dilemma of power.

Dato' Abdullah Ahmad is Malaysia's Special Envoy to the United Nations

(This article has been reproduced with the kind permission of Sun )