• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The UN is an ineffective Peacekeeper. Discuss

Extracts from this document...


The UN is an Ineffective Peace-Keeper. Discuss. Peacekeeping is defined as 'the activity of keeping the peace by military forces (especially when international military forces enforce a truce between hostile groups or nations)' Although the UN charter does not specifically mention peacekeeping as a function it does refer to '...peaceful settlement of disputes.' (Paul Wilkinson, International Relations, a Very Short Introduction). The nature of peacekeeping operations has changed dramatically since the end of the cold war and it could be said that peacekeeping operations have gone through three distinct generations. The traditional view of peacekeeping as the observation of ceasefires through mutual consent from parties to the dispute, these were usually two separate states as after the First Gulf War on the Kuwait-Iraq border. This typically occurred to prevent intervention by the two dominant superpowers, the USA and the USSR during the cold war. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, conflicts within states became more common and the UN began to use peace enforcement, whereby armed UN forces were given a mandate which allowed them to use physical force to pacify an area. ...read more.


As a result of this the aid convoys were far less effective than they had the potential to be, with the regions of Bosnia which could have benefited from them the most, having little to no access to aid. Furthermore, it must be remembered that the UN is not an autonomous organisation. It is an intergovernmental organisation (IGO) which consists only of the member states and possesses no military of its own. Therefore in order for the UN to be successful, even if the security council is in favour of action, there must be support from other nations and the willingness to contribute militarily or financially to the cause. The force sent to monitor the ceasefire within the demilitarized zone on the border between Iraq and Kuwait in 1991 consisted of troops from many powerful and influential member states such as China, India, the Soviet Union and the USA. This aided in its relative success; the eventual withdrawal of UN troops in 2003 whilst maintaining a lasting peace in this area. Similarly, in East Timor, the UN was supported by Australia, working to prevent an influx of Indonesian immigrants which led to a peace agreement being reached and East Timor gaining recognition as an independent state. ...read more.


This led to Lumumba seeking assistance from the USSR and allowed the conflict to escalate when the USSR agreed to provide assistance in the form of weaponry. Another reason why the nature of the conflict could have an adverse affect on the effectiveness of the UN as a peace-keeper is that the nature of some conflicts can be deep and enduring despite actions to prevent them, examples being ethnic cleansing and religious conflict. Rwanda epitomises the idea that such conflicts are so prominent in the culture and history of an area -and in the case of Rwanda have been exploited by colonial masters- that it is unlikely that UN intervention will ever bring about a lasting peace. In conclusion in the area of peacekeeping the UN has a record of abject failures -the worst of which being the genocide in Rwanda and failure to change the status of Somalia as a failed state- punctuated with a few marginal successes such as running East Timor as a protectorate and the successful monitoring of the ceasefire on the Iraq-Kuwait border. Also UN intervention is most successful when conflicts are between two states and there is a clear distinction between the party which the UN should support and that which it should oppose. ?? ?? ?? ?? Antonia Dali ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level European Union section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level European Union essays

  1. C1 Analyse the factor, which contribute towards an effective team.

    * Being open to criticism and advice After selling the tickets we had a group meeting to discuss what went wrong in making profit. As the members notify the problem one member said that she knew from the beginning that our business wasn't going to make any profit.

  2. Transformation of the U.S. Hegemony in Europe through NATO after the Cold War

    At the Oslo Meeting in 1992, NATO left open the possibility of expanding its role in collective security operations12. On the other hand, the European Union first took the issue of creation of capacities to conduct a common foreign policy at Maastricht in 1991.

  1. The EU's CFSP and the Iraq Crisis: A Catalyst for Change?

    And even with the new emphasis on capabilities, the EU remained, in Lord Robertson's famous words, "a military pygmy."5 Even if the EU had a robust CFSP it still lacked the ability to flex military muscle without the help of the US.

  2. Leadership in the Global economy.

    In addition, the EU's competition policy framework applies (except for agriculture and fisheries). Switzerland did not ratify the EEA in a referendum held in 1992. The Community and Switzerland concluded seven bilateral agreements in December 1998 on land-based transport, air transport, the free movement of people, agriculture, research, procurement, and

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work