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Old 01-24-2006   #1
SWJED
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Default UN peacekeeping operations (catch all)

24 Jan. Washington Post - U.N. Finds Waste in Peacekeeping Work.

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An internal U.N. probe of the department that runs international peacekeeping operations has uncovered extensive evidence of mismanagement and possible fraud, and triggered the suspension of eight procurement officials pending an investigation, according to U.N. officials and documents.

U.N. investigators have uncovered rampant waste, price inflation and suspicion that employees colluded with vendors in awarding contracts for a variety of peacekeeping programs, said a confidential report presented to several governments Monday.

Peacekeepers, for example, spent $10.4 million to lease a helicopter for use in East Timor that could have been secured for $1.6 million, and paid $2.4 million to buy seven aircraft hangars in Congo that were never used, the report said. An additional $65 million or more was spent for fuel that was not needed for missions in Sudan and Haiti, said the report, which called for an investigation into whether U.N. staff members improperly "colluded to award" one U.N. supplier an $85.9 million fuel contract for the Sudan mission.

The failure of U.N. managers to enforce basic standards has led to a "culture of impunity" in U.N. spending, according to the report. Together, it says that there are "strong" indications of fraud involving contracts whose value totaled about $193 million, nearly 20 percent of the $1 billion in U.N. business examined by the auditors...
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Old 02-23-2006   #2
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Default Fraud, Abuse Charges Threaten U.N. Peacekeeping

23 Feb. Voice of America - Fraud, Abuse Charges Threaten U.N. Peacekeeping.

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Japan and the United States have warned that funding for U.N. peacekeeping operations might be cut unless reforms are made promptly. The two countries contribute nearly half of the U.N. peacekeeping budget. U.N. Security Council is taking a close look at management of peacekeeping missions worldwide.

Japan's U.N. Ambassador Kenzo Oshima told the Security Council Wednesday his country's support of peacekeeping operations is under threat because of persistent reports of waste and fraud in purchasing equipment and supplies.

"I feel compelled to say that, unless immediate and convincing measures are taken to redress the problem, my government, which currently contributes about 20 percent of the PKO budget, will find it very difficult to maintain domestic support for underwriting peacekeeping operations," said Kenzo Oshima.

Washington's U.N. Ambassador John Bolton called the Japanese envoy's statement "electrifying". Bolton, who has repeatedly criticized U.N. management practices as a "culture of inaction", told the Security Council U.S. taxpayers are like the Japanese in demanding greater accountability from the world body's rapidly expanding peacekeeping operations.

"We must see changes," said John Bolton. "The problem of procurement fraud, waste and abuse is one that directly affects our tax dollars as the largest contributor to the U.N. system, 22 percent in the case of the regular budget, 27 percent in the case of the peacekeeping budget. This means that the United States pays or one-fourth of the price in every case of fraud, waste, and abuse. This is unacceptable."

An internal U.N. report issued last month charged that waste and fraud in peacekeeping procurement had cost the world body as much as $300 million over the past five years. The U.N. operates 18 peacekeeping missions with 85,000 troops, at an estimated cost of $2 billion per year.

Another mission for Darfur is in the planning stages.

U.N. Chief of Staff Mark Malloch Brown told the Security Council Wednesday he was alarmed by reports of fraud. He cautioned that the $300-million figure might be inflated, but at the same time he agreed that there is an urgent need to address concerns of donor countries about how their money is being spent.

"We are extremely sympathetic to the U.S./Japan position on this," said Malloch Brown. "They have a tough case to sell to their legislatures and public opinion, and we have to help them make it, by showing that where there is corruption or management failures, we're acting in a much more proactive way to address them. "

Malloch Brown says he expects many of the management reform issues will be addressed in a report Secretary-General Kofi Annan is to release next week. A broader report addressing questions of procurement reform is due out later this year. But Malloch Brown cautioned that the reforms being proposed will cost the U.N. membership more money.

The world body recently placed eight procurement officers on administrative leave with pay pending an internal probe into purchasing practices. A separate investigation is being conducted by U.S. federal prosecutors.

But U.N. officials have emphasized that the suspension of the eight employees was taken as a proactive measure, and is not a finding of guilt.
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Old 07-26-2006   #3
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Default Peacekeeping Missions: A Dinosaur in the Making?

Case in point - Israel preferes a NATO-led mission in S. Lebanon once things settle down. From most accounts that will not be accepted by the other major actors in Lebanon and by extension the Middle East. And so the cycle goes on...

Just a quick question – considering recent history… Seems that the most capable peacekeeping forces are those of the U.S., other NATO member countries, Australia and New Zealand - that said, many of the aforementioned countries are now viewed as having a “vested interest” (read biased) in the outcome of most conflicts by one of the parties of that conflict or the other. Clearly, sending in mediocre (at best) peacekeeping forces from other countries and organizations (to include the U.N.) has not worked well. So, is peacekeeping going the way of the dinosaur?

Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-09-2013 at 10:31 PM. Reason: Posts 3-19 were in a seperate thread till merged.
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Old 07-26-2006   #4
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Default PKs

Dave,

I don't think so, although each case where a PK is called for will be treated individually. The real issue is PK C2; who actually "commands" a PK? In the case of UN forces, the individual contingents have their own national C2 channels that overide the UN and the Force Commander. That happened in UNAMIR 1 and 2.

The other issue is the theater; UN missions in the Mid-East are political bandaids and punching bags for both sides. UNIFIL has been pummeled repeatedly;Israel has played a large role in that, using UNIFIL "failures" as a backdrop to Israeli actions. Hizballah has also taken its toll on UNIFIL in of course OGL; MAJ Peter McCarthy Australian Army and COL Rich Higgins USMC were both killed by Hizballah.

As for the 4 UNMOs killed by Israel in this round, I regard Israeli professions of sorrow and/or regretful accidents as pure propaganda. They have over the years made it standard practice to shoot at UN positions--especially unarmed UN positions as a tactic of intimidation, he Israeli head of security in South Lebanon--my student at CGSC--told me that was the case before I went to OGL and the IDF proved in my first evening on OP. Other UNMOs had similar experiences.

It would be very interesting to see what happens to a NATO PK in South Lebanon, especially one with a robust mandate and one equipped with the weapons and C2 to enforce it.

best
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Old 02-05-2007   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Odom View Post

Hizballah has also taken its toll on UNIFIL in of course OGL; MAJ Peter McCarthy Australian Army and COL Rich Higgins USMC were both killed by Hizballah.
This is news to most of us in Australia.

Peter McCarthy was killed when his vehicle drove over a landmine. The Australian Army and the Australian War Memorial record his death as such an accident. (see: http://www.awm.gov.au/atwar/peacekeeping.htm) . There are literally thousands of landmines in the area where the accident occurred, laid by various belligerants at various times. What evidence is there for the assertion he was killed by Hezbollah?

regards,

Mark

Last edited by Mark O'Neill; 02-05-2007 at 10:14 AM. Reason: correct URL for AWM
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Old 02-05-2007   #6
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Default Peter McCarthy

The evidence is the operational zone Peter was killed in had been an area of Hizballah bombings and attacks. As for the thousands of landmines: yes they are there. In Peters case, they were in the middle of a road I had traveled on many times and it appeared at the time there were 2 stacked AT mines or an AT mine with a booster. Amal at the time was not targeting UN personnel; the SLA and the Israelis if the they wanted to target UN personnel used direct fire and indirect fire.

So when I lay it at Hiznallah's door step, I do so as they were the most likely perpetrator. Was it command detonated? No. Was it on a normal LOC? Yes

Was it an "accident"? NO

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Old 02-08-2007   #7
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The only reasons I can see for the UNIFIL "observers" remaining in the war zone in Lebanon is a) incompetence within UNIFIL. b)UNIFIL is actively siding with Hezbollah by providing "human shields" and intended world reaction when Israel inevitably targets them. or c) a combination of the above. UNIFIL was obviously not "keeping the peace" in the area.

The UN has been demonstrably anti-Israel for some time now. For sure Israel isn't pure as driven snow, but most anti-Israel UN edicts are so transparently designed to "get" Israel as to be laughable.

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Old 07-26-2006   #8
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Default PKO or PEO

According to our own doctrine There is a HUGE difference between Peace Keeping Operations (PKO) and Peace Enforcement Operations (PEO). Just my 2 cents


JP3-07-.3 Joint Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures for Peace Operations

Chap II,
1. General
Peace Keeping Operations (PKO) support diplomatic efforts to establish or maintain peace in areas of potential or actual conflict. The United States has participated in and supported UN-sponsored PKO; for example, UNMIH, the United Nations Preventive Deployment Force in the Former Yugoslavia Republic of Macedonia, and others. The United States has also participated in non-UN sponsored PKO, which include the MFO in the Sinai and the MNF I in Beirut.


Chap-III
1. General
The goal of Peace Enforcement Operation (PEO) is to enforce the provisions of a mandate designed to maintain or restore peace and order. PE forces use force or the threat of force to coerce or compel compliance with resolutions or sanctions. In PEO, force is threatened against or applied to belligerent
parties to terminate fighting, restore order, and create an environment conducive to resolving the dispute.


Interesting Read
Journal of International Peace Operations
http://ipoaonline.org/en/journal/journal_2006_0708.pdf

UN Peacekeeping Missions
Since 1948 there have been 60 UN peacekeeping operations, of which 47 have been created by the United Nations Security Council since 1988. Close to 130 nations have contributed personnel at various times, and 105 are currently providing peacekeepers. As of May 31, 2005, there were 16 peacekeeping operations underway with a total of 66,058 personnel, and the top contributors of military and civilian personnel to current missions were Pakistan (9,880), Bangladesh (7,932), India (6,001), and Nepal (3,562).


SOURCE
http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0862135.html

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Old 08-09-2006   #9
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It seems to me the lesson is that peacekeeping missions need to be very assertive. Due to its structure the UN struggles to create assertive forces both politically and due to lack of troops and equipment. The need to prevent the spread of conflict and minimizing regional fall out will keep peacekeeping from going away whether or not the UN will be able to reclaim its role as the premier peacekeeper will depended on whether or not the structural flaws that hold back it mission are adequately addressed. If not future missions will most likely be handled by regional organization possibly to be passed off to the UN when the situation calms down.
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Old 08-08-2006   #10
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Default Peacekeeping / Peacemaking Odds and Ends

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Old 08-08-2006   #11
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Default Several more...

from the United Nations Peacekeeping Operations page on the SWJ Reference Library.

United Nations Peacekeeping Best Practices - United Nations' policy, analysis and lessons learned for the peacekeeping community. Library of documents, including lessons learned studies, discussion papers, policy papers and reports.

Handbook on United Nations Multidimensional Peacekeeping Operations - December 2003. As peacekeeping has evolved, particularly since the late 1980s, a growing number of United Nations peacekeeping operations have become multidimensional in nature, composed of a range of components, including military, civilian police, political affairs, rule of law, human rights, humanitarian, reconstruction, public information and gender. There are also a number of areas, such as mission support and security and safety of personnel, that remain essential to peacekeeping regardless of a particular mission’s mandate. This Handbook is intended to serve as an introduction to the different components of multidimensional peacekeeping operations. It is not intended to provide strategic or policy guidance. Rather, it is intended to provide field personnel who are new to the United Nations, or who are being deployed to one of our multidimensional peacekeeping operations for the first time, with general background on the responsibilities of each component of our operations and how these fit together to form the whole. We have tried to make the Handbook as brief and practical as possible, while doing justice to the broad areas of work in which many of our operations are engaged.

The Use of Force in UN Peace Operations - Simon Chesterman. New York University of Law paper for the United Nations. This paper reviews the changing approach to the use of force in UN peace operations, with particular emphasis on responses to the security vacuum that typically arises in a post-conflict environment. The United Nations has generally been reluctant to allow military units under its command to use force. The three peace operations in which troops under UN command engaged in the use of force on a significant scale — Congo from 1960–1963, Somalia in 1993, and Bosnia and Herzegovina from 1994–1995 — were traumatic experiences for the organization. The controversies to which these operations gave rise were surpassed only by two occasions on which force was not used at all: in Rwanda and Srebrenica. Such reluctance to use force is consistent with the traditional conception of peacekeeping as an impartial activity undertaken with the consent of all parties, in which force is used only in self-defence. Over the years, however, all three characteristics of traditional peacekeeping — consent, impartiality, minimum use of force — have been brought into question.

American Civilian Police in UN Peace Operations - William Hayden. United States Institute of Peace report, July 2001. This report presents the major issues, concerns and recommendations that emerged from the United States Institute of Peace symposium "American Civilian Police in International Peace Operations: What have we learned?"

Evolving Models of Peacekeeping: Policy Implications and Responses - Dr. Bruce Jones and Feryal Cherif. New York State University Center on International Cooperation study. It is an open question whether 11 September 2001 ushered in a fourth phase of evolution in peacekeeping, the first elements of which – an assertive US policy, a shift in geographical focus, a more complex security environment, a challenging political terrain for the UN – are beginning to be played out. At the very least, the more assertive US security policy is producing a series of shifts in the approaches of other states and institutions to security issues (particularly in Europe), which are already altering the strategic landscape within which UN peacekeeping operates. Further, a shift in emphasis within the Security Council towards terrorism, the Middle East, and WMD proliferation is likely, over the medium term, to have an impact on the level of organizational resources devoted to strengthening peacekeeping. Ongoing changes in the pattern of conflict, and changing perceptions of security threats, may yet further reshape the peacekeeping landscape. This paper addresses recent and ongoing evolutions in both the form and context of UN peacekeeping.

Peace(keeping) in Our Time: The UN as a Professional Military Manager - John Hillen. Parameters article, Autumn 1996. This article presents the thesis that the United Nations does not have an inherent capacity for such professional military management, and that such capabilities were not "present but dormant" throughout the Cold War. In fact, the UN is inherently anti-professional in the military sense; at best, it is suited for managing only quasi-military and very limited operations such as observation missions and small, traditional peacekeeping missions. The recent steps taken to professionalize UN military operations have failed because the military capability of the UN cannot be separated from its political nature, from political characteristics that purposely limit and constrain its forays into the functional management of military force. To paraphrase Clausewitz, UN military operations have their own grammar (no matter how unintelligible), but their logic is the logic of the UN's political character.

Policy Challenges of UN Peace Operations - James Baker. Parameters article, Spring 1994. As recently as 1990, a mere handful of US Army officers were seconded to the United Nations as military observers. Barely four years later, Army troops serving under the UN flag (or in direct support of United Nations operations) number in the thousands. US participation in such ventures can be expected to continue, and the Army's institutional interest in UN peace operations is rapidly rising. Like war itself, a peace operation is a military undertaking with a political aim. But unlike warfare, with its long history, peace operations are a relatively recent military phenomenon. Historical precedents are few. This fact alone makes peace operations, in all their forms, a special challenge not only for those who implement policy but for those who make it, both in and out of uniform. The salient policy challenges are in the areas of multilateral operations, mission termination, and combat readiness.

Is the UN Peacekeeping Role in Eclipse? - Robert NcClure and Morton Orlov II. Parameters article, Autumn 1999. To deal with the rising demand for its peacekeeping services, in 1992 the UN created a Department of Peacekeeping Operations--also called DPKO. That department underwent predictable growing pains as member states sought to have the world's premier international organization assume increasing responsibility for resolving conflict in the new world order. This article will outline those initiatives in UN peacekeeping management and describe the recent proposals to restructure DPKO. These recent initiatives, born out of member state frustration, mission/resource mismatch, and a diminished appetite for global agendas, will certainly have a significant effect, in ways yet to be determined, on the next ten years of UN peacekeeping.
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Old 01-30-2007   #12
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Default U.N. Chief Proposes Peacekeeping Reforms

30 January AP - U.N. Chief Proposes Peacekeeping Reforms by Alexandra Olson.

Quote:
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon formally outlined a proposal Monday to divide peacekeeping into two departments, saying the United Nations was struggling to cope with its mounting peacekeeping responsibilities.

The department runs 18 missions around the world with nearly 100,000 peacekeepers. Recent years had seen "an unprecedented growth in the number and scope of peace operations mandated by the Security Council," Ban said.

One of the new departments would focus on planning, directing and providing political guidance to peacekeeping operations, while the other would be responsible for finance, procurement, and logistics. Each would be headed by an undersecretary-general...
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Old 07-26-2007   #13
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Default From Ottawa to Sarajevo

From Ottawa to Sarajevo
Canadian Peacekeepers in the Balkans
Dawn M. Hewitt, 1998

This is the 18th in a series of security studies by Queen's University Centre for International Relations (QCIR) under the title of Martello Papers.

DOWNLOAD PDF HERE:

Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-07-2013 at 08:08 PM. Reason: This was in a stand alone Europe thread till today
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Old 10-25-2008   #14
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Default Whither Peace Operations?

USIP, Oct 08: Whither Peace Operations?
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Summary
  • Much progress has been achieved over the last decade and a half in the development and use of peace operations as a tool to quell conflicts, but there are limits to how much more progress can be expected.
  • The number of troop contributors and troops deployed to peace operations has recently reached unprecedented highs, but the bulk of troops came from a limited number of states.
  • The relationship between the United Nations and non-UN peacekeepers seems for the most part complementary. Nonetheless, the rise in non-UN peace operations has probably led to the United Nations becoming too dependent on too small a base of lesser-developed states.
  • The characteristics of most troop contributors (e.g., type of governance, national quality of life, ground-force size) correlate with their level of contribution, but even politically willing nations with the “right” characteristics can likely deploy only a small percentage of their troops to operations at any one time.
  • While Europe and Africa have achieved the most progress in developing institutional capacities, each continent confronts problems of interinstitutional relations and resource shortages.
  • Russia’s hegemonic role in Eurasia and the United States’ historical legacy in Latin America have hindered development of comprehensive institutional capacities for peace operations in each region.
  • East Asia may slowly be moving beyond ideational strictures that crippled efforts to develop regional capacities.
  • Institutional progress is not expected in South Asia and the Middle East, and states of each region should not be expected to send military units to intraregional operations. Nearly all South Asian countries, however, will be major players in UN operations. A few exceptions aside, Mideast states will remain bit players on the world scene.
  • Demand for easy or moderately challenging operations will generally be met, but the hazardous missions most apt to occur will be called for by states possessing the wherewithal to take them on and bring others along.
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Old 08-22-2009   #15
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Default UN peacekeeping operations (catch all)

For obvious reasons, discussion at SWJ tends to focus on the ongoing missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, threats to homeland security, broader military and strategic issues, COIN debates, CT issues, and occasionally conflicts elsewhere.

I don't particularly have a point to make with this thread, but I did think it might be useful to flag the very substantial amount of peacekeeping and stabilization that is going on elsewhere. There are currently (as of 31/7/09) more than 93,000 personnel deployed on UN PKOs, representing a very subtstantial growth over the past 20 years.


What's more, the composition of UN contingents has changed markedly over the years, with Pakistan, Bangladesh, India, and Nigeria contributing over one third of all personnel, and only two Western countries (Italy and France) among the top 20 contributors. The Chinese contribution has steadily grow too, from almost nothing to over 2,000 troops now (ranking them 11th).


Now, it can be argued that the UN is inefficient, that UN PKOs are insufficiently robust, and that the quality of individual contingents can be weak, and the peacekeeping operations often fail. That is undoubtedly true, but rather misses the point: its not as if anyone in the West is lining up to do DR Congo (etc) these days, nor can the failure of peace agreements necessarily be laid at the UN's feet, nor is it clear that deploying no PKO would better help consolidate peace. Moreover, it needs to be remembered that the United Nations is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the international community, which often finds it convenient to blame the organization for what are really the failures of its member states.

As I said, I didn't have a major point to make, other than to welcome comments. Like it or not, UN PKOs remain a significant part of the global architecture for peace and security, and it might be useful to think how they might be better used or made more effective.
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Old 08-23-2009   #16
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Quote:
Like it or not, UN PKOs remain a significant part of the global architecture for peace and security, and it might be useful to think how they might be better used or made more effective.
-Clearly articulated and understood mission
-Clearly articulated rules of engagement and rules for use of force
-Concurrence among donor countries on how the job will be done, when a unified HQ and C2 structure is employed (think the nightmare of UNOSOM)
-Transparency
-Relevant training
-Instilling a strong commitment to employ force, within the known constraints, to do the job, as opposed to dithering around about what to do in the face of bullies who attempt to exploit perceived weakness in resolve
-Troops who are less in it for the food-on-my-table-at-home aspect. I know, nearly impossible to do,but it should be an objective nonetheless
-Clearly articulated and understood mission ( It all comes back down to this)

I've studied peacemaking/peacekeeping seriously ever since I served in Somalia, and wouldn't mind serving on observer duty at some point.
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Old 08-23-2009   #17
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Default Diplomacy is the barrier

Rex,

We have touched upon these issues in threads on Rwanda (UN), Darfur (AU & UN) and another (lost in my memory). There is a huge amount of non-military commentary, by academics and observers. For a few years I subscribed to peacekeeping journal, but stopped as the 'real' issues rarely got a mention.

I have a recollection that when the UN deployed to Sierra Leone, itself a peculiarly difficult mission, a UK press report commented that an Indian contingent were fresh from duty in Kashmir and would be robust. Within a short time it was quite clear this was wishful thinking. Only when the UK intervened and did the 'hard' work did the UN feel able to operate.

How about the remarkable disappearance in Rwanda of an under-size Bangladeshi infantry battallion and reappearance across the border in Uganda?

Nothing will change, however many eminient persons write, until a shared, agreed political will appears. A will that enables peace-making and peace enforcement - as distinct from peacekeeping. High risk operations are not for the casualty averse.

For diplomatic reasons few want to say that. Rex is right to note non-NATO nations now bear the burden and mainly in Africa (except France in Ivory Coast IIRC).

Meantime back to my armchair.

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Old 08-24-2009   #18
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Default Two barriers to effective PKO

I agree with all that has gone before, and would add that as I see it there are two major barriers that are overlooked when dealing with PKO. First is the fact that Blue Helmets come from all over the world, have different missions, different rules of engagement, and most importantly speak different languages. The second problem is that because of the way that the UN creates Blue Helmet "armies" creates and incentive structure whereby countries who cannot afford to equip and train their militaries are the ones who have the most to gain by sending them on Peace Keeping mission, to get them equipped and at least a little trained, not on their dime.

The illustration to this problem is the Eastern front of WWI. The Austro-Hungarians, who basically commanded a large coalition of Armies made up from the various Hapsburg holdings were creamed by the Russians, who mostly spoke Russian, and were far more unified in comparison. The Russians, in their turn, we trounced by the Germans, who were not only more unified than the Russians, but also well trained and well equipped.

I know that this is a simplification of WWI, but the analogy holds.
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Old 08-24-2009   #19
John T. Fishel
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Default The UN is less than the sum of its parts.

I make this observation not to criticize the UN; it is, as Rex says, a wholly owned subsidiary of the member states. Thus a UN PKO can only be what its members want it to be. As Jon says, UNOSOM II was a case in point although I disagree as to the reasons it failed. Created under UNSCR 814, it had the most robust C2 structure of any Peace Op to date (and maybe ever). At US insistence the SRSG was an American, former Dep NSA VADM Jonathon Howe, the FC was a NATO general, LTG Cevik Bir from Turkey, and the Dep FC was again US MG tom Montgomery, dual hatted as COMUSFORSOM. From may until June 93 the major problem was that DPKO was unable to either negotiate sufficient force contributors or get them deployed in time so the UNOSOM II force which was to have been 28,000 strong at handover on 4 May was only 14,000 at it peak. Then came Aideed's attack that kileed several peacekeepers.
At Admiral Howe's insistence, with the concurrence of USUN Rep, Madelaine Albright, the UNSC passed over the weekend, UNSCR 837 which authorized operations to capture Aideed and any others who assisted him putting UNOSOM II on the side of his opponents. This brought into play the problem of Terms of Reference (TOR) - the agreements signed by DPKO with the force Contributors specifiying the rules of engagement and precisely what they agreed to do under the terms of UN "Operational Control" (which, at best, is the equivalent of US tactical control - TACON). Italy, which both contributed forces and provided the U2 - intel staff officer - had long standing relationships with Aideed and said flat out that 837 was not what it had signed up for; Italy had only agreed to enforce 814. Hence conflict.
I won't go into the US C2 fiasco other than to say that it violated our own doctrine in every possible way.
If interested see Chapter 12 of Max Manwaring and my book, UNCOMFORTABLE WARS REVISITED and/ or Chapter 9 of my edited volume, THE SAVAGE WARS OF PEACE (thesource of the other chapter written with Tom Daze who was XO to Montgomery).

Cheers

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Old 07-13-2012   #20
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Default India and UN Peacekeeping: Declining Interest with Grave Implications

India and UN Peacekeeping: Declining Interest with Grave Implications

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