Keeping Watch

Monitoring Technology and Innovation in UN Peace Operations

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Knowledge is power. In the hands of United Nations peacekeepers, it can be a power for peace. Lacking knowledge, peacekeepers often find themselves powerless in the field, unable to protect themselves and others. This book explains how technologies can increase the range, effectiveness and accuracy of United Nations observation. It also identifies potential problems and pitfalls with modern technologies and the challenges to incorporate them into the United Nations system. It examines the few cases of technologies effectively harnessed in the field and offers creative recommendations to overcome the institutional inertia and widespread misunderstandings about how technology can complement human initiative in the quest for peace in war-torn lands.



Multidimensional peace operations: Cases

Traditional peacekeeping is appropriate after a conventional war fought by armies and once a cease-fire with well-defined cease-fire lines has been established. This has been rare in the post–Cold War world, where most of the fighting is not of an international but of an internal (intranational) character. Hence, modern peacekeeping forces need to be deployed throughout a territory and in the population centres rather than in no-man’s land. Intensive negotiations prior to and during an operation need to occur with the host state and any conflicting parties. Resolving a conflict after (or during) civil war also involves a commitment to peacebuilding, meaning the development of the physical, psychological and governmental infrastructure for a sustainable peace. This entails a larger set of tasks and a wider set of players, including police and civilians. It also means that technology needs to be applied in novel fashion.


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