The United Nations is an international organisation created in 1945 shortly after WWII to encourage resolution of international conflicts, to uphold international justice and to promote social progress. In the words of Dag Hammarskjöld, second UN secretary general, “the United Nations was created not to lead mankind to heaven but to save humanity from hell.” Since 1945 the United Nations helped save millions from poverty and diseases, and from diseases and local wars and conflicts. Today it has 193 country members and the challenges it faces are varied and vast.
Hardeep Singh Puri, an eminent Indian diplomat, Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations from 2009 to 2013, is the author of Perilous Interventions: The Security Council and the Politics of Chaos. He served in the Security Council from 2011 to 2013, during which time a wave of political upheaval and civil wars swept whole regions and affected the lives of millions of people.
This book is a chronicle of the interventions the UN Security Council (UNSC) has made in the past few years, in deeply divided countries, from the perspective of an Indian diplomat, non-permanent member of the UNSC. It deals with some of the most terrible events of our day, the overstepping of the mandate on Libya at the beginning of 2011, Russia’s unilateral decision to annex the Crimea from Ukraine, the lack of consensus among member-states in Syria, the use of force in Yemen, and finally with the doctrine Responsibility to Protect (R2P), which was endorsed by all member states of the United Nations at the 2005 World Summit.