Primary Purpose #3
Achieve “international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms far all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion” (Khan, 494).
The International Monetary Fund, The Economic and Social Council (ESOSOC), The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), and the World health Organization (WHO) are a few of the agencies which tackle some of the causes of war, three of which are conjuring up an external enemy expansionism based on self-interest capitalism, and relative deprivation.
Conjuring Up an External Enemy
External conflict is often used to provide internal cohesion to deflect attention to internal challenges (Woito, 66). There is no more convenient example of the prevailance of such attitudes as that of the United States. The author of Roots of War claimed that this is the basis to some of the United States’ formation of foreign policy as well as crediting elements of American isolationism and expansionism to decision making and killing abroad (Richard J. Barnet, Roots of War, (Penguin Books, Markham, 1981) 138, 250, 258).
Expansionism Based on Self-Interest Capitalism
War tends to occur when the interests of one nation cannot be met with bargaining or threats toward another country (Woito, 66).
War is possible when the people of a nation have higher expectations than what the scarce resources can provide (Woito, 64). Discontent is bred by the people dwelling on what they think they deserve verses what they are able to get.
Conjuring up an external enemy, capitalist driven expansionism and relative deprivation can all be diffused as potential forces of war by facilitating the economic and humanitarian health of individual states. The UNESCO facilities just such health in individual nations by fostering international cooperation in educational development, international understanding, science and culture.
Primary Purpose #4
This purpose ties the other three purposes together by providing a forum “for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.” This is clearly manifested in the General Assembly and the Law of the Sea. These forums deal with misperception among peoples and the absence of law.
Misperceptions Among Peoples
Misunderstandings through poor communication between those who have different cultural, national, religious or ideological backgrounds need to be addressed (Woito, 67). Communication and an increase in comprehensive information is a means to anticipate and forestall conflict. Preventative diplomacy and the requirements of the parties, these efforts and successes are not publically seen and are often never revealed. When efforts fail, the effects are felt by those affected and are visible to all via the media (Boutros-Ghali, 325).
Absence of Law
Groundwork needed to be put in place to establish laws in areas of national interaction whereby all states agreed. The Law of the Sea Treaty of 1982 is but one example in which conflicts over fishing rights were resolved (Khan, 505-506). However, the United States did not sign saying that with its Navy it didn’t need to.
The United Nations has proved itself to be both stable and flexible to diffuse many various causes of war. It has mediated in immediate post-World War II tensions, in the unexpected Cold War, and has followed a policy of form following function to problem solve the new tensions in the post-Cold War era. The extensive manner in which the United Nations has adressed peace, from security issues to economics, health and human rights has established positive attitudes and active concern for one another throughout the world. The United Nations can stand on its record as a peace maker and a peace keeper.
Boutros-Ghali, Boutros. “An Agenda for Peace: One Year Later” Orbis v.37 Summer 1993:323-332.
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Synopses of United Nations Cases in the Field of Peace and Security 1946-1965, New York, N.Y., 1966.
Goodrich, Leland M., and Anne P. Simons. The United Nations and the Maintenance of International Peace and Security, The Brookings Institution, Washington DC., 1955.
Hiscocks, Richard. The Security Council, Macmillan Publ. Co. Inc., 1973.
Khan, Rais A., and James D. McNiven. An Introduction to Political Science, Nelson Canada, 1991.
Matsuura, Kumiko; Joachim W. Muller, and Karl P. Sauvant. Chronology and Fact Book of the U.N. 1941-1991. Oceana Publications, Inc., 1992.
Woito, Robert. To End War The Pilgrim Press, 1982.