Synopses & Reviews
Time and again the United Nations has deployed peacekeeping missions in trouble spots around the globe: Iraq, Somalia, Bosnia, Rwanda. Has peace ensured? Have these missions, in fact, made any difference in the disorder and destruction they are purported to forestall? Or are they, as Francois Debrix contends, an illusion -- more virtual peacekeeping than actual interventions in international affairs?
Re-Envisioning Peacekeeping is a critical revisiting of UN interventions. Addressing the question, "How do UN peacekeeping missions shape the contemporary vision of international affairs?" the book applies the notions of simulation and ideology to the practice and theory of international organization. Debrix focuses on the media strategies that give UN missions the appearance of effectiveness and that promote liberal ideologies of governance.
Debrix shows how the UN missions in Iraq, Somalia, and Bosnia attempted to simulate a landscape of ordered international politics -- a New World Order -- by disseminating visual renditions of peaceful intervention and humanitarian assistance. As a result of these sometimes elaborate efforts, Debrix finds, the UN peacekeeping missions of the past decade represent a study in visual simulation, which has nothing to do with actual matters of international life in the 1990s.