What future for Peace? The changing nature of democratic governance and the military organization.

Vincent Bernard, the editor in chief of the International Review of the Red Cross (ICRC), has recently written the ‘world seems to be entering a period of selfishness, of one-sided power grabs and of rallying around murderous identities.’ This post considers what hope there is for peace

The United Nations Charter (1945) sets forth in its preamble its raison d’être as saving ‘succeeding generations from the scourge of war, which twice in our lifetime has brought untold sorrow to mankind, and […] to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours’. The reality that since 1945 the world has experienced more than 250 major conflicts, with many more than 100 million casualties, shows that these aims have been largely aspirational. In addition, we see a challenge to the concept of the nation state, key to the system of containment of violence in the international arena, with the rise of non-state actors such as armed groups supporting ideologies and commercial private military and security companies (PMSC) operating in some of the prior domains of state militaries. The fragmentation within states through differentiating ethnic and religious populations, and the existence of failed states, present challenges to the universal system and attempts such as the Geneva Conventions to constrain aspects of conflict.

Full reflection available here.