Reed Hepler received an M.L.I.S. from IUPUI, with emphases in Digital Curation and Archives Management. He received a Bachelor’s in History from USU, with minors in Religious Studies and Anthropology. He also earned a Certificate in Museum Studies. He has worked in museums, libraries, archives, and historical sites for the past four years.
Resolving International Conflicts
International conflicts affect the entire world. Causes of international conflicts include resources, political differences, and geographic boundaries of the states involved. The three main strategies used by states and international coalitions to resolve international conflicts are collective security, self-help, and the humanitarian approach.
Collective security is a strategy in which the conflicting nations are convinced to cooperate with each other and the mediators in their conflict to preserve the strength and peace of the global community. Collective security encourages nations to focus on the benefits they have received and not only the negative aspects of the conflict in which they're embroiled.
Rebellious states, or states that don't agree to work together for the common good, are perceived as enemies of international peace. This brings the collective efforts of the other nations to those states to subdue them. Examples of organizations or actions that invoke the strategy of collective security include the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the League of Nations, and the United Nations.
In the self-help strategy of international conflict resolution, nations in a conflict are encouraged to protect themselves against aggressors and attacks. This includes an injunction against furthering the conflict by attacking the other nations involved in the conflict.
An example of self-help was the Neutrality Acts of the 1930s passed by the United States. The last two of these four acts allowed the United States to send non-weapon resources to the Allied forces who were fighting in World War II. Eventually, this policy led to intervention by the United States in the international war. However, the initial strategy used was self-help.
Humanitarian Approach of the United Nations
The United Nations is widely seen as an impartial third party in international conflicts. This has led to its being involved in resolving these conflicts. Efforts utilized by the United Nations to promote resolution include:
- Political missions to all involved countries
- Peacekeeping operations involving military and political agents
- Human rights analysis
- Assistance in conducting negotiations and elections
- Imposition of sanctions
In the humanitarian strategy of international conflict resolution, humanitarian efforts are used to improve the health and social status of the population of a state. These efforts are independent of any external intervention in the conflict.
Humanitarian efforts are used to ameliorate the problems caused by internal and international conflicts. However, they don't end when the conflicts are resolved. They're used continuously to improve the social and economic state of affected nations until they have been fully developed. The end goal of humanitarian efforts by the United Nations is to ensure that all nations that have been negatively impacted by conflicts are able to access all basic resources and needs for their populations.
International conflicts rage throughout the world and are caused by many different factors, from resources to politics to geographic boundaries. There are three main strategies used to resolve international conflicts. Collective security is a strategy in which states involved in an international conflict are convinced to work together and with the international community. Those states that don't agree to follow international policies are perceived as enemies or rogue states. The other states collectively fight against these enemies. Self-help is a conflict resolution strategy in which attacked states are encouraged to defend itself from attacks. These states aren't encouraged to attack their aggressors or prolong the conflict in any way. The main goal of this strategy is to prevent significant negative consequences for the attacked state.
The United Nations uses its own strategy to resolve international conflicts called the humanitarian strategy. In this approach, humanitarian efforts are used to assist the populations of all nations involved in a conflict. These efforts are independent of any external military intervention in the conflict aside from peace-building efforts. The United Nations is frequently called upon to resolve international conflicts because it's perceived to be an international impartial party. Its humanitarian efforts don't cease when the conflict is complete. They continue until the states that have been negatively impacted by international conflicts become fully developed.
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