On April 25th, 1945, delegates of 50 nations, representing 80 percent of the world’s population assembled at the San Francisco Opera House. In amidst the ravages of war and the failure of the League of Nations, and following the Dumbarton Oaks proposal, they came to create an IO that could promote world peace, and build a better world. New Zealand played in active role at this conference, helping write a charter that would be acceptable to all countries. Represented by the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Peter Fraser, and Sir Carl Berendsen, the New Zealand delegates “sole aim [was to] see the setting up of a world organisation that would really work and that will be the background for an ordinary progress towards security, propensity, and happiness for all people, of all nations”. As a result, New Zealand, sought to limit the role of the GPs in the new organisation, along widening the powers of the General Assembly (UNGA).
Even at the establishment of the UN, the proposed two-tiered membership went against core liberal vales, like democracy, accountability, flexibility, and fairness. It is worth highlighting in particular, New Zealand’s strong opposition to the GPs becoming permanent members, with veto powers. New Zealand saw the veto as “repugnant to the wishes of practically every member except the [GPs] and those who by policy or interest made it a point of always supporting the [GPs]”. Frazer added that there was a great difference between a nation “defying [a] Councilâ€¦ decision [compared to a] a nation being legally empowered to exercise defiance”. The opposition to the veto powers led to a long, heated, and sometimes personal debate.  The liberal dream emphasised by New Zealand was that all nations would be able work together equally. Nevertheless, the GPs made it clear that they would not accept anything less, affect no veto, no organisation. New Zealand stuck by her principles, by abstaining when the final clauses of the veto power were voted on, commenting that it was “wise and proper courseâ€¦not to vote against the veto and thereby possibly wreck the Charter, but to abstain from voting, making plain toâ€¦the world the reasons” for doing so. As a result, it can be said that the dream that a liberal IO could be formed was flawed from the beginning.