Category Archive: Peacebuilding

The UN in Mali: Colonel de Wolf on the conflict, the Tuareg and MINUSMA’s role

“MINUSMA is waiting for more enablers – technologically advanced military forces – before they can move up to Kidal. After the Dutch and the Swedes have arrived, we can move up to Kidal… Continue reading

On Blue Helmets and Cynicism, Linda Polman on UN Peace Operations

“UN peacekeepers can do a lot of good in situations when you need traffic cops.” Linda Polman is a critical freelance journalist who has been covering peacebuilding and humanitarian aid in the aftermath of… Continue reading

Linda Polman on War Games

Linda Polman is a freelance journalist who has been covering peacebuilding and humanitarian aid in the aftermath of war for over 20 years. In War Games (2008) she describes the negative consequences of… Continue reading

Four Lessons for Peacebuilding in Syria

What if the Syrian fighting factions reach a peace deal, and the United Nations are called in to help build the peace? What lessons should the UN bring from their previous peacebuilding experience?… Continue reading

Syrian peace talks: what role for outsiders?

What if serious peace talks are held on Syria, how can and should outsiders be involved? Willemijn Verkoren (director at CICAM) argues that now that the Syrian president Assad has agreed to disarm… Continue reading

Statebuilding vs Peacebuilding

How feasible is it for the United Nations to build peace from above? If ‘positive peace’ is hard to attain, should the UN instead focus on just stopping the fighting? Professor Michael Pugh… Continue reading

Willemijn Verkoren on a Personal Note

Willemijn Verkoren (CICAM) introduces herself and explains how she first got involved with the study of war and peace. In Cambodia she saw the difficulties of democracy-building. She reflects on the success of… Continue reading

Pugh on Peacebuilding Recipes

What peacebuilding recipes have been used in the past? Professor Michael Pugh (University of Bradford) elaborates on the complexities of post-conflict political economics, and the role that donor countries often play. Through conditionalities, donors… Continue reading

Critiques of Peacebuilding in Bosnia

How effective has the peacebuilding effort in Bosnia been – and what were the main flaws? Professor Michael Pugh (University of Bradford) critiques the post-conflict peacebuilding efforts in Bosnia for being excessively neoliberal, for… Continue reading

‘Things to avoid’ after peace agreement on Syria

Dan Smith (Secretary General of International Alert) reflects on a best-case scenario in Syria. What can the international community do to help build peace in Syria, should a peace agreement eventually be reached?… Continue reading

Security Council reform is necessary

Abiodun Williams (President of The Hague Institute for Global Justice) reflects on the lack of unity in the United Nations Security Council throughout the Syrian crisis. Dr Williams terms reform of the Security… Continue reading

Abiodun Williams’ ingredients for successful peacekeeping

Abiodun Williams (President of The Hague Institute for Global Justice) tells of his first steps in the work of peace and justice and tells of his days as a young UN peacebuilder. Dr… Continue reading

On a personal note

Dan Smith (Secretary General of International Alert) tells of how he first got involved in peace activisim and research. In the face of the often sombre peacebuilding record of the past decades, Mr Smith maintains… Continue reading