Peace Operations: From Short-Term to Long-Term Commitment

By developing a strategic approach to the implementation of peace accords in civil war, the United Nations can better the odds for ending a war and fostering development in the long run. Recent attempts at implementation have suffered from recurring difficulties: incomplete, vague and expedient agreements; lack of coordination between implementing agencies; lack of sustained attention by the international community; incomplete fulfillment of agreements by warring parties; and the presence of 'spoilers' who seek to destroy and incipient peace. To overcome these difficulties, the UN must encourage the parties to choose political, cultural, social and economic security-building measures during the negotiation phase and systematically apply confidence-building measures to the military components of implementation. This demands a reconsideration of peace making in a civil war to include a long-term international commitment to the development of war-torn societies.