With the Highest Authority: UN-Peacekeeping Missions

  • Herbert Wulf


Traditionally the United Nations (UN) was reluctant to deploy troops with a mandate authorizing the intent to use of force. The first aim was to ensure peace or to end conflict by peaceful means alone, and in most of its peace operations the UN did not employ force. The four most important exceptions were the Congo mission of 1960–64, Bosnia and Herzegovina 1992–95, Somalia 1993–95 and the special case of the Korean War 1950–53 that was not mandated by the Security Council but by the General Assembly. The troops in the latter conflict were not under UN but rather US command. All of these armed deployments ended with traumatic results (Findlay 2002). The traditional image of the lightly armed blue-helmets of the UN that engage in violent conflicts and wars solely as moderators or mediators has drastically changed since the end of the Cold War. So-called robust peace operations and peace enforcement operations that assign to UN troops the task of keeping warring groups apart or to become involved as a party to the conflict have become the rule in recent years.


United Nations Armed Force Security Council Secretary General Global Governance 
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© Herbert Wulf 2005

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  • Herbert Wulf

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