March 22nd, 2006

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The United Nations: Engineered and Doomed to Fail

The United Nations is doomed to the same fate as its predecessor the League of Nations. The reforms needed for an effective organization are available but because of realist tendencies of all its member states, these reforms will never be instituted by the Security Council. The UN has had limited successes when its member states, particularly the Security Council, want the UN to be successful, but it has had more failures because of the same Security Council almost always engineered these failures. Often the Security Council, particularly when certain members have conflicting interests, wants the UN to fail. In this paper I will briefly discuss the successes of the UN and the failures of the UN, focusing on the Haiti, Rwanda, and East Timor failures. I will argue first that the differences between the Cold War world and the Post Cold War world are not as significantly different as the overwhelming orthodox view held by International Relations scholars. I will then argue that the failures of the UN are often engineered by its own security council. To paraphrase Sutterlin: "with brutal clarity…(it is clearly seen that)…the Security council derives…(much of its)...power…from the…Permanent Members.[1]
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