The United Nations and Human Security

The United Nations and Human Security

The United Nations and Human Security

The United Nations and Human Security

Synopsis

The United Nations and Human Security analyzes the changing peace and security challenges faced by the UN in an evolving international environment that is no longer solely characterized by states and inter-state security. The authors, who comprise both scholars and UN practitioners, cover a wide range of pressing current issues--including refugees, international tribunals, the promotion of democracy, ethics, regional organizations, humanitarian intervention, conflict prevention, and peacekeeping--that form a cutting-edge and controversial security agenda.

Excerpt

Edward Newman and Oliver P. Richmond

The international challenges posed by conflict-torn societies are as great as ever. Moreover, the modalities that international actors employ to deal with these challenges continue to raise pressing practical and normative questions. the results have been controversial and fraught with difficulty. the UN’s retreat from Angola, in the wake of its dubious record in Cambodia, Bosnia, Rwanda, Somalia and Haiti, serves to underscore this. For different – but equally disturbing – reasons, the sidelining of the un from Kosovo in 1999 marginalized the organization from a conflict with defining importance for the future of peacekeeping, peacemaking, humanitarian intervention, sovereignty, and regional security. the role of the un in rebuilding Kosovo has reprieved the Organization to some extent, but does not detract from that sense of marginalization. This great human experiment in international organization – at least in its universal aspirations – is in jeopardy. Yet at the same time it is adapting to a fundamentally evolving post-Westphalian environment.

This volume examines the recent trend on the part of multilateral organizations – the United Nations in this case – towards more complex peace operations that imply integrated, multi-dimensional and multi-level attempts to address conflict within communities and rebuild failed states at the social, practical and normative levels. This multilateral agenda also constitutes a claim to a wider project to promote a secure and prosperous international society through preventive diplomacy, peacekeeping, peacemaking, human rights regimes, democratization and development. This volume explores and critiques this liberal ethos through contributions covering the broadening scope of peacekeeping and peacemaking missions, their humanitarian aspects, and the role that international actors have played – and with what success – in

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