Damian (damiandoyle) wrote in peace_studies,

Peacekeeping lessons learned?

In Shake Hands with the Devil, Roméo Dallaire describes the resourcing issues that plagued the United Nations (UN) peacekeeping force in Rwanda in the months before the 1994 genocide.* The international community was unwilling to provide sufficient troops for the mission, and those that were provided were inadequately equipped. Vehicles were difficult to acquire. Even stationery was in short supply; situation reports could not be written for lack of pens.

That was then, this is now. What has the UN and the international community learnt from the experience of Rwanda more than a decade ago?

Take a look at this short film from the Pulitzer Centre, a US news media organisation. Listen as the UN personnel in Darfur, Sudan, explain that they lack proper communications equipment (such as thuraya) and describe the poor condition of their vehicles.

Lessons learned?

* Dallaire, R. 2003, Shake Hands with the Devil: The Failure of Humanity in Rwanda, Arrow Books, London. On equipment shortages in the early days of the mission, see pp. 106-107. On vehicles in general and personnel carriers in particular, see pp. 181-182.
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