UN – 70 Years of Peace as a Core Task Part II

5: How do you meet the challenges?

The UN peacekeeping operation in Congo, MONUSCO, has been operating for more than 15 years, and is striving to gain control of the country. The Security Council has therefore given MONUSCO a mandate to defeat the rebel groups by force of arms. This is contrary to the principle that the UN should be an impartial actor and have a high threshold for the use of force.

Both in the Congo, the Central African Republic and Mali, the peacekeeping operations have the task of supporting the government and state apparatus in gaining control of the land. Among other things, they will support the military, police and the judiciary. Such support is not a problem in itself. But where many citizens do not see their own governing powers as legitimate and the ruling parties may be fighting against rebel groups with broad support in parts of the population, the UN is seen as biased .

In Mali, a country located in Africa according to remzfamily.com, there is a fluid transition between rebel and extremist groups. There, too, the UN is becoming a warring party in an anti-terrorist operation, with major military losses in 2014 and 2015 as a result.

A common feature of these three operations is that they take place where there is no peace to be preserved. The UN forces also lack the necessary equipment and capacity to carry out the mandate. And the human suffering is great.

6: How to meet the challenges?

The HIPPO report proposes changes along four main lines:

  1. Peace operations must have a political strategy, which governs design and implementation.
  2. The full range of UN instruments must be used to meet the challenges on the ground.
  3. Partnerships with regional organizations are important. Here, the African Union (AU) is at the forefront.
  4. The UN must become less focused on the headquarters in New York and more on what is happening in the countries they are to support, and also support measures that build an open and inclusive state power.

On this basis, the report highlights another main area for change: Focus more on preventing conflict between others through mediation.

  • Focus more on the protection of civilians. Here, too, emphasis must be placed on an integrated approach between military and civilian tasks.
  • Achieve a better match between mandate and resources.
  • Clarify the stronger framework for the use of force and limits on what the UN can do. Among other things, the panel states that the UN should not take on military anti-terrorism missions. Furthermore, the classic principles of UN peacekeeping operations must continue to have value – consent from the parties, impartial and a high threshold for the use of force.
  • Achieve a stronger political focus to secure peace after a conflict, after the war has subsided.

In order to achieve the changed focus, the following measures will be particularly important: Faster deployment of forces and deployment of them in the conflict area by, among other things, establishing a standing UN force / capabilities.

  • Strengthen global and regional partnerships, with particular emphasis on AU.
  • Better local anchoring and support the development of an open and inclusive state power
  • Zero tolerance for sexual abuse carried out by personnel in peace operations.

7: Efficiency versus legitimacy

The HIPPO report emphasizes that the UN is threatened by a crisis of legitimacy . The gap has become too large between ambitious mandates and high expectations on the one hand and poor financing, few resources and weak results on the other. The UN is not seen as effective and often lacks legitimacy in the local population – those who primarily seek to help. In recent UN operations, one often sees that a UN force is received with great cheers by a traumatized and war-weary people who sense a glimmer of hope in all the misery. But then the attitude seems to turn quickly when it turns out how little the UN actually manages to accomplish.

Despite dei Tribunal challenges the United Nations faces and dei many good proposals for reform in HIPPO report, it is the seventh and last EiT visually impaired functioning duck Tryggingsråd , which determines what actually happens. But even if the Security Council were to adopt good mandates, the UN’s peace capability depends on the member states standing up. They must have both the will and the ability to contribute more resources and new tools. As is well known, the UN is no more than what the member states in practice want the UN to be.

Experience from the UN operations in Mozambique, Liberia and Sierra Leone shows that the UN peacekeeping operations can still make a big difference, despite a narrow mandate, few resources and many challenges.

8: Norway and the way forward

Traditionally, the political parties in Norway have agreed on the main lines of Norwegian foreign and security policy. Most would argue that it is impossible to distinguish between the real politics and the ideal politics of a country. Nevertheless, we can say that, by and large, support for the UN is important from an ideal political point of view . NATO is important for more realpolitik considerations. An investment in NATO, and especially its relationship with the United States, is seen as an investment in its own security.

In September 2015, US President Barack Obama will host a summit on UN peacekeeping operations. One of the goals is to get European countries in particular to contribute more, also with forces. Perhaps this is the beginning of a change of attitude among NATO countries, as contributing to UN operations is increasingly shifted into the realpolitik sphere, although this can be seen as a more indirect investment in one’s own security compared to NATO engagement.

Increased credibility with the UN’s command and control system will probably help to make these operations more attractive to participate in. Such an effect can also increase Western contributions to UN operations. Among other things, it is easy to imagine that if the UN had been involved in the Maghreb and the Sahel and the migration crisis there, then UN operation would have been considered more relevant, also for Norway.

In the important follow-up of the report after the UN General Assembly in the autumn of 2015, Norway can play a role as a bridge builder – as a facilitator and driving force – and mediate between groups of countries that will initially be uncooperative in some of the reform proposals.

UN soldiers from Bangladesh

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