International Organizations: A Comparative Approach

By Werner J. Feld; Robert S. Jordan et al. | Go to book overview

obsessive focus on each other, any serious contemplation that military power would be transferred during the Cold War by either superpower, within their respective alliance systems, from national control to multilateral (or multinational) control was unlikely. Suggestions that this might have been possible, as, for example, over the possession and use of nuclear weapons, inevitably foundered on grounds of national interest. The provisions of the North Atlantic Treaty made it explicit that a "national recourse" was always an option for a state to "opt out" of NATO crisis activity if the state viewed participation as not in its national interest. The same has been true for UN peacekeeping/peacemaking.

Nonetheless, it should also be pointed out that any alliance relationship-- i.e. multilateralism--affects notions of the member-states' interests that over time might weaken nationalistic tendencies toward unilateralism. NATO is still searching for a function that transcends simply calculations of respective national interests. The June 1993 meeting of the NATO foreign ministers in Athens, where the European allies agreed to join the U.S. in providing air cover for UN peacekeepers in Bosnia, provides an inter-IGO role for NATO

It is, nonetheless, not implausible to contemplate that the formation of security regimes in the post-Cold War period could be a reflection of a tendency toward multilateralism which originated during the Cold War. Each of the incipient or functioning regimes discussed in this chapter presumably also possesses this potential. (This is also discussed in Chapter 3.) What makes the multilateralism approach relevant today is that it is being viewed as leading, in and of itself, to the further institutionalization of the international system. 31


NOTES
1.
Robert O. Keohane, After Hegemony: Cooperation and Discord in the World Political Economy ( Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1984), p. 63.
2.
The typology of regime origins in these paragraphs follows Oran Young, "International Regimes: Problems of Concept Formation," World Politics 32 ( April 1980): 349-51.
3.
See NATO Press Release (93)6, "NATO Seminar with Partner Countries on Cooperation in CFE Treaty Implementation," January 22, 1993. Approximately 450 inspections were conducted during the Treaty's baseline validation period of July-November 1992.
4.
Robert O. Keohane and Joseph S. Nye, Power and Interdependence: World Politics in Transition ( Boston: Little Brown, 1977), p. 55.
5.
Young, "International Regimes," p. 343.
7.
Regimes would perhaps benefit from direct taxing authority. In addition to the proposals for revenue sharing in the proposed Law-of-the-Sea (LOS) Treaty,

-271-

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