UpdSince 1948, United Nations peacekeepers have worked to assist host countries navigate the difficult path from conflict to peace. Both the difficulty of reconciling anti-terrorism and peace-building in 21th century – conflict and post-conflict areas and the way in which they are inseparably interlinked can be demonstrated by one of the most complicated challenges posed by the global peace-building community. Particularly if the main parties are internally divided or have weak command and control systems. Dealings with the parties to the conflict United Nations peacekeepers should be impartial, but not neutral in the execution of their mandate.
The recent escalation of violence in CAR has offered another occasion for peacekeeping. But the upcoming mission, to be led by the UN, seems fated to repeat mistakes of its predecessors. Post-conflict periods are difficult and sensitive times as leaders, factions and citizens pursue reconciliation and lasting peace.
Count Folke Bernadotte understod the need of UN peacekeeping and was aware that impartial military observation and assistance is an enabling, yet temporary mechanism. The deployment of UN military, armed or unarmed, seves to shore up, and not replace a political process that should address the root causes of the conflict. Impartiality is crucial to maintaining the consent and cooperation of the main parties, but should not be confused with neutrality or inactivity.
Scandinavian countries does reasonableness well in global peace-building and an even more strong UN is important to Swedish Government. Indeed, their ideals continue to guide and Inspire the work of the UN. Recently UNSG Ban Ki-moon come to Sweden to discuss issues on global security, future of Syria political and humanitarian effort.
The Mediatir Folke Bernadotte was the first leader of what is UNTSO today, a mission that embodies, since 1948, the historical commitment of the Security Council to peaceful resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict. The Oslo Accords of 1993 were as close as Israelis and Palestinians have come to looking each other in the eye, admitting neither side is going away, and jettisoning a bitter past for a better future.
On Monday, June 16, Brookings Foreign Policy Program host Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende for an address on the importance of dialogue and inclusiveness in post-conflict settings, as well as the need to establish stability and security in these war-torn countries.
Norway has been engaged in a number of peace and reconciliation efforts around the world, notably in the Middle East, South Sudan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Colombia. Norwegian peace and reconciliation efforts have been institutionalized over the last 20 years.
Foreign Minister Brende’s remarks will be based on Norway’s experience working with a number of countries on post-conflict reconciliation efforts. This will be the first time the Norwegian Foreign Minister has spoken in a public forum in the U.S. about the guiding principles behind Norwegian peace efforts.
It is not surprising that the way the threat of terrorism is addressed by actors involved in peace-building activities is often limited to its possible effect on the security environment for their operations.
- Actors involved in terrorist activities do threaten peace and stability.
The United States has long been a steadfast supporter of UN peacekeeping operations and is working around the world to help build partnerships and capacities with other countries seeking to contribute to the cause of conflict prevention, peacekeeping, and peacebuilding.
A certain reserve towards the fight against terrorism on the part of the peace-building community is not without foundation, and may be seen as a natural reaction to the declaration after the horrific attacks of 11 September 2001 of a global ‘war on terrorism’ which goes far beyond traditional anti-terrorist priorities and needs.
The events of 11 September might have led the world’s leading states to reassess terrorism as a security threat and for USA as national security threat, but could hardly fundamentally alter the nature of peace-building operations and tasks, from institution- and democracy-building to post-conflict recovery and reconstruction.
- The fight against terrorism during the final stages of conflict or in a post-conflict environment is closely linked to the tasks of establishing and maintaining public security, law and order, and of creating a relatively safe environment for both the local authorities and the population in the conflict zone.
- In the period between the cessation of hostilities and the establishment of a lasting peace when stable political institutions, law and order are restored and socio-economic recovery is achieved, the functional division between traditional military duties and other tasks taken on by the security component of a peace-building mission—such as law enforcement and counter-terrorism—can be very blurred.
It is into this ‘grey area’ that most of the security tasks in a post-conflict environment fall, from patrolling refugee camps, escorting humanitarian convoys, and providing protection to refugees, Until recently, counter-terrorism would certainly have been seen as falling within the range of these ‘grey area’ tasks and, for both conflict and post-conflict settings, would qualify as an ‘operation peace and security -building mission other than war’.
Part of this ideology of the war on terror has been the United States doing things by themselves to fight against terrorists who operated in the shadows, feared no deterrent, and would use any weapon they could get their hands on to cause thousand of deaths in the heart of any powerful country. Now we in Europe must expect to be more actively engaged by Washington.
In reality, many of the problems that are blamed on the war on terrorism as it manifests itself in various conflict and post-conflict areas around the world have little to do with counter-terrorism in the more narrow, traditional sense. This ‘war’ is an uneasy combination of war-fighting, international peace enforcement and national counter-insurgency campaigns with the fight against terrorism as such.
Additionally, some of the organizations which have been or continue to be in risks of armed confrontation in their peace-building engagement may also be involved in non-military activities that can range from social and community work to economic, political and religious functions.
The themes emerging from this suggest developing an intercultural friendship, developed through information exchange and interactions between members, which includes a system of rules coordinating shared experiences based on respect for common values, democracy, the rule of law.
To be effective, the program must also address the social and political drivers of instability and involve civilians as well as military officials. For instance, training must involve not just soldiers (as its now) but police officers, judges and prosecutors, with a strong emphasis on the rule of law and human rights, so cracking down on extremists does not end up radicalizing more people or empowering authoritarian leaders.
An emphasis has to be placed on good governance. There also needs to be investment in community projects, education and moderate groups that build civil society and discourage extremism.
At play is a close network of key personnel from NGOs, the academic community, and the Foreign Service. The network proved by them is useful in offering unconventional diplomatic channels.
These activities are of critical importance in ‘failed’ or weak states where non-state groups often have to fill the governmental void, as local authorities, if there are any, are unable to perform their direct political, security and social functions.
In a much-anticipated speech at the National Defense University, Mr. Obama sought to turn the page on the era that began on Sept. 11, 2001“Our systematic effort to dismantle terrorist organizations must continue,” Mr. Obama said. “But this war, like all wars, must end. That’s what history advises. It’s what our democracy demands.”If all goes according to President Obama’s plan, the United States will soon be making a major new investment so that other countries can help in the fight against extremists.
In the decade after the the attacks in the USA, however, there has been a significant evolution in the way in which security of peace-building community is being approached in the face of new threats and challenges..
NorwayFM event today on June 16th will also mark the inauguration of the Alan and Jane Batkin International Leaders Forum Series, a new event series hosted by Foreign Policy at Brookings, which will bring global political, diplomatic and thought leaders to Washington, D.C. for major policy addresses.
Thus informal Institutions comprising numerous of such systems and networks direct link to the topic being discussed and can give meaning in the context (where and when they are used in these war-torn countries) relevant to the work in peace and stability by global peace-building community.
EVENT Brookings Foreign Policy Norway’s Guiding Principles for Peace and Reconciliation 16 june 2014 & SIPRI paper: June 2003 Anti-terrorism and Peace-building During and After Conflict by Ekaterina Stepanova.
Atlantic Council address and discussion on Fixing Fragile States: Urgent Priority or Exercise in Futility? by H.E. Børge Brende, Minister of Foreign Affairs Kingdom of Norway