The nature of international crisis and crisis management has grown more complex in the post-Cold War era. Whereas “traditional” international crises originated in an interstate conflict, centered on adversaries, and occurred “between peace and war, ” today's nontraditional crises may emerge from an intrastate conflict, include players who are not adversaries, and take place after war has already broken out at some level. While crisis management previously focused on state actors, it must now encompass a multitude of players, including state actors, nonstate entities, and international organizations. The primary goal of crisis management used to be to avoid war without relinquishing interests. By contrast, today the objective may be to prevent the crisis, terminate hostilities, or negotiate a long-term settlement. Managing a nontraditional crisis is likely to involve diplomatic peacemaking as well as a range of “peace support” operations, including peacekeeping, peace enforcement, and peacebuilding.
Perhaps no crisis has been more synonymous with the complexity of the post-Cold War security environment than Bosnia. The civil war that ravaged this newly independent state throughout much of the early 1990s prompted a series of international actions that, to the outside observer, appeared variously to be haphazard, confused, insufficient, and/or counter-productive. The international community vacillated among negotiating peace, keeping peace, and enforcing peace. The inscrutable conflict seemingly defied an appropriate response.
This book seeks to shed light on two complex and interrelated subjects—the role of peace support operations in managing nontraditional