January 2015 nsda public forum offensive peacekeeping

This preview shows page 42 - 43 out of 55 pages.

January 2015 NSDA Public Forum: Offensive Peacekeeping Page 42 OFFENSIVE PEACEKEEPING BAD: RISKS FUTURE PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS EXPANSION OF PEACEKEEPING TO OFFENSIVE ACTOINS MIGHT DECREASE THE USE OF PEACEKEEPING MISSIONS IN THE FUTURE-Bosco '13 [David; Assistant Professor at American University's School of International Service; Foreign Policy; 1 April 2013; ; retrieved 12 December 2014] Several press accounts (see here and here) have described the addition of an offensive mandate to a peacekeeping force as "unprecedented." They are right in a narrow sense. The council has not previously designated particular units for offensive operations. But there’s important, and ominous, precedent in Congo for U.N. offensive operations. The current Congo mission (which has gone by several names) is in fact the second major U.N. operation there. The first operated from 1960 to 1964 and struggled to keep the newly decolonized state intact even as it navigated intense Cold War politics. At first, the mission stuck to the core peacekeeping principles of impartiality and neutrality. But those principles were tested by the near disintegration of the nascent state. Was the U.N. supposed to be impartial between state and non-state actors? By 1961, the Security Council had given peacekeepers permission to go on the offensive against separatists in the province of Katanga, who were operating in league with foreign mercenaries. Significantly less verbose in those days, the Council authorized "the use of force, as a last resort" to suppress civil war and disturbances in the country. Several months later, the council urged the peacekeepers to "take vigorous action, including the use of the requisite measure of force." Just as it has now, the notion of peacekeepers turning into warfighters startled some observers. A top U.S. official, Harlan Cleveland, wrote at the time: I shall not soon forget the political shock wave produced in our politics by the Congo crisis when Americans suddenly discovered that soldiers on a peace-keeping mission sometimes had to shoot back at people who insisted on shooting at the peace-keepers. It was more comfortabl e to think of "peace" as a cartoonist’s image, a vaguely female figure in a pure white gown, mouthing sweet nothings and clutching her olive branch. But when this ethereal creature, adjusting her halo to a rakish angle, whipped out her six- shooter … most A mericans did a double take. The U.N.’s offensive in Congo included several distinct phases, including "Operation Rumpunch" and "Operation Morthor." The campaign, which featured Indian and Irish troops, was ultimately successful in defeating Katangan secessionists, but it proved highly controversial. As William Durch has noted in a superb book on the history of peacekeeping, the trauma of that operation "helped to ensure that the U.N. funded no new peacekeeping operation for a decade." ANY NEGATIVE OUTCOME FOR OFFENSIVE PEACEKEEPING WILL DECREASE SUPPORT FOR THE MODEL IN THE FUTURE- Bosco '13

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture