US–UN Relations in the UN Security Council in the Post‐Cold War Era

David M. Malone

in US Hegemony and International Organizations

Published in print February 2003 | ISBN: 9780199261437
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599309 | DOI:
 US–UN Relations in the UN Security Council in the Post‐Cold War Era

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An examination is made of the evolution of US behaviour in the United Nations Security Council since the 1990s; this behaviour shows an inconsistency born out of a general suspicion of the organization, particularly of its General Assembly, and the author demonstrates that US historical experience of the UN largely explains that suspicion. First provides some evidence of this US inconsistency of behaviour, with reference both to conflict resolution and humanitarian issues. Then goes on to explain the primary influences on this behaviour, arguing that US ambivalence towards the UN has been more affected by struggles over a New International Economic Order in the 1970s and US perceptions of unbalanced UN approaches to the Arab–Israeli dispute than by the end of the cold war. Having made special reference to America's chequered historical experience of the UN, the chapter examines the ways in which negative perceptions of the UN have played out in US domestic politics, particularly since the late 1990s. Finally, America's experience of the UN's expanded post‐cold‐war security agenda is reviewed, noting that the inherent tensions between the promotion of values and the promotion of interests, and the difficulties of relating means to ends, have come sharply to the fore during this period.

Keywords: ambivalence; behaviour; global organizations; UN; United Nations Security Council; US; US domestic politics; US–UN relations

Chapter.  9224 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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