CHICAGO - Can Chicagoans expect to see UN troops with blue helmets protecting residents from violent neighbors?
The rumor started when in mid-December a Cook County commissioner told the media Chicago was experiencing something similar to an African tribal war:
The United Nations has a track record of protecting minority populations. There was tribal warfare between the Tutsis and the Hutus in Africa, and they deployed peacekeeping troops there to help save those populations and reduce the bloodshed. We have to do something — black people in Chicago make up 30 percent of the population but 80 percent of those who are killed by gun violence.
Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin visited the U.N. Nations in New York, lobbying for international assistance after Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel rejected President Donald Trump's suggestion that the National Guard could be employed to protect Chicagoans as the number of shot and killed in the city surpassed 600 for the year and neared 3000 persons being shot and wounded in the past 12 months.
The commissioner and his staff were shocked by the outrage in response to Boykin's plan. His spokesman told Snopes that it was never really Boykin's intention to have UN troops in Chicago.
Instead, his spokesman said, Boykin was simply in search of ideas to stop an upsurge in homicides in the Windy City. "The goal was to find successful strategies that they have implemented elsewhere, not guns and tanks but the work that they do that is effective in quelling violence," he said.
Alex Jones' InfoWars stirred the controversy and led to the Snopes.com article saying the rumor was not true.
Besides, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told the Chicago Tribune that the UN had no jurisdiction in Chicago.