Towards a Standing UN Force for Peacekeeping

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    The idea of a standing United Nations (UN) military force to respond rapidly to quell violence or maintain a fragile peace is as old as the UN and there exists a substantial body of research pertaining to the proposed shape and scope of such a force capacity. Proposals have come from within the UN (linked to the moribund Military Staff Committee, see Fabian, Soldiers without enemies: preparing the United Nations for peacekeeping. Brookings Institution, Washington, pp 60–61, 1971), from national governments (the Netherlands, Canada and Denmark), and through proposals from within parliamentary structures, such as the United Nations Rapid Deployment Act, proposed to the US House of Representatives in 2001 (US Congress, United Nations Rapid Deployment Act. Introduced to the House of Representatives 08 March 2001: 07th Congress, 1st Session H. R. 938. United States of America House of Representatives, 2001). More detailed proposals have emanated from governmental think tanks, such as the Royal United Services Institute paper on a “UN Intervention Force” (Codner, Royal United Services Instit J 153(3):62, 2008). The most developed set of proposals for standing peacekeeping capacities have been the series of proposals for a United Nations Emergency Peace Service (UNEPS) and have evolved to include force capacities for “protection, security, health and hope” (Langille, Preparing for a UN emergency peace service. Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, New York, p 113, 2012). This chapter seeks to move beyond discussions surrounding the technicalities of a proposed UN standing peacekeeping capacity. Rather, this chapter will investigate and critique how the discussion for a standing UN peacekeeping capacity is a critical component of the discussion around the capacity of UN peacekeeping to deliver increasingly complex protection mandates. It concludes by outlining where further academic research may be necessary to develop the concept of standing peacekeeping forces, as well as offering thoughts policy recommendations for those engaged with standing peacekeeping forces.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationPerspectives on Peacekeeping and Atrocity Prevention
    EditorsDavid Curran, Trudy Fraser, Larry Roeder, Robert Zuber
    PublisherSpringer Verlag
    ISBN (Print)978-3-319-16371-0
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

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