Global Peace and Security GLOBAL GOVERNANCE SERIES
Nuclear weapons and strategy> biosecurity> disarmament> conventional arms> missile threats and responses> war and conflict> peace making> peace building and peacekeeping> geopolitics> terrorism
and counter-terrorism> crime> intelligence> space security> cyber and data security> failed states> maritime and aviation security> sanctions> landmines and unexploded ordnance> privatization of security
Gold Mercury’s Global Governance Series is designed to offer an informative and invaluable insight into how our world works. The series is structured according to Gold Mercury’s Global Governance Model™ which identifies eight Global Governance challenge areas and a number of corresponding subareas. In each area we address where major policy discussion emanates from, who the key actors are, what developments and challenges we can expect the future to present and which actors are making a considerable contribution to finding global solutions to global challenges.
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Towards an Understanding of the Contemporary State of Global Peace and Security To comprehend how contemporary global peace and security is governed one must consider both state and international security. These are of course not mutually exclusive, as a state is a collective community of individuals and the international community a collective of nation-states.
By thinking about the security of states and its subjects and the international community in turn, we can begin to comprehend the interconnectedness of current global peace and security. For if peace means the absence of war, and security freedom from threat, then the dependency of an individual on their state, to avoid and guard against war and conflict, is as palpable as a stateâ€™s reliance on peace with its neighbour. The contemporary global paradigms of Peace and Security are best approached through the avenues of their historical process of evolution. The 1648 Peace of Westphalia marks the birth of the nation-state and its prime quality â€“ territorial integrity. Following the thirty years of death and destruction in what was predominantly a conflict between the Protestants and Catholics of European Powers for political pre-eminence over the continent, the medieval idea of a universal religious authority acting as final arbiter of Christendom, was replaced with a secular concept of international relations. >
Westphalian Peace ushered in an era where the interest and goals of states became widely accepted as transcending those of the individual. It recognized the legitimacy of all forms of government and established the notion of religious freedom and toleration cuius regio, eius religio. Faith as a ground for affiliation came to be complemented and partly subsumed by nationalism – association by language and culture. By destroying Westphalian Peace ushered in an era the notion of religious universalism, the ‘Westphalian where the interest and goals of states system’ gave impetus to the notions of reason of state, became widely accepted as transcending and balance of power as key concepts in foreign policy conduct and formation. From this point onwards the those of the individual. particularist interests of states became paramount both politically and legally. However, the Westphalian state system was primarily a European and Christian establishment. The notion, rules and norms of sovereignty did not apply to foreign policies that sought the erection of overseas dependencies and empires. This doublestandard persisted until the Westphalian structure was no longer simply a European but global framework of governance, exported and implemented often with little concern for local political norms and traditions. In 1998 then NATO Secretary General and current High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union, Javier Solana, stated that ‘humanity and democracy [were] two principles essentially irrelevant to the original Westphalian order’ and directed the criticism that ‘the principle of sovereignty it relies on also produces the basis for rivalry, not community of states; exclusion, not integration.’ Today the state is the most significant building-block and powerful actor in international relations. Among organizations such as the United Nations (UN), the African Union (AU) or the European Union (EU), it remains the determinant of global developments in terms of peace and security. The principle of sovereignty can be seen as both its birth certificate and constitutive nature. Citizens have different >
5 GOLD MERCURY INTERNATIONAL Eight Global Governance Areas: Global Peace and Security
expectations from their state. Some expect democratic procedure and a functioning welfare apparatus, while others may only look to it for the protection of their most basic human rights. Sovereignty is today both a fact and a quality. The dominant analytical framework for understanding Peace and Security throughout the twentieth century has been the concept of power politics. The understanding that power is the currency of international politics stems from a Hobbesian worldview. Seventeenth century philosopher Thomas Hobbes considered in “The Leviathan” (2009) Today the state is the most significant that the lack of an overarching political authority building-block and powerful actor – a leviathan or highest court, to be the reason for a constant state of anarchy, a war of all-against-all. One of in international relations. Among organizations such as the United Nations the past century’s great political theorists and father of Realism, the most dominant of modern state theories, (UN), the African Union (AU) or the Hans Morgenthau, expressed in “Politics Among European Union (EU), it remains the Nations” (1948) that security is any state’s raison d’être determinant of global developments in and the path towards domestic security is the constant pursuit of power at the expense of competitors. terms of peace and security. The grand critique of this conception of international politics as a never-ending state of quasi-conflict is that of the Liberalism. Liberals like Joseph Nye and Robert Keohane (1977) began seeing the Cold War that had emerged following the Second World War as a manageable structural formation, and believed that while >
6 GOLD MERCURY INTERNATIONAL Eight Global Governance Areas: Global Peace and Security
If the consent of citizens is required in order to decide that war should be declared… nothing is more natural than they would be very cautious in commencing such a poor game, decreeing for themselves all the calamities of war.
international politics is a constant struggle for security, this state can be managed through institutionalist projects such as the UN, and treaties like the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty of 1968, all of which creates interdependence and can result in a democratic peace between nations. The German philosopher Immanuel Kant explicated the foundations of this strand of political liberalism in his 1795 essay “Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch”. In one of the great liberal treatises of the modern era Kant makes an analogy between states and individuals, arguing that just like individuals states have different characteristics – some are bellicose and warprone, others are tolerant and peaceful. In short, the identity of the state determines its outward orientation. Kant charts out that the possibility for peace among nations is dependent on notions of democracy: ‘If the consent of citizens is required in order to decide that war should be declared… nothing is more natural than they would be very cautious in commencing such a poor game, decreeing for themselves all the calamities of war (1795: 94-95). The liberal school of thought approaches sees peace through the prism of a common desire for security and the possibility for cooperation and interdependence. It considers the ability of society to make itself heard and influence state behaviour through the agency of the civil sector and democratic procedure. With the fall of communism in the early 1990’s and the end of the Cold War stalemate between the eastern and Western blocks, a gradual shift in the theory and practice of international security took place. Intra-state conflicts, terrorism and the weak and failing structure of states emerged as security risks in the late twentieth and early twenty-first century. These would require innovative and ground-breaking approaches to securitisation. Critical Security Studies emerged that sought to redefine state sovereignty condemning existent security paradigms as too state-centric, and international peacekeeping missions backed by the UN Security Council would grow in numbers as a force for greater security in volatile regions.