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Global waiting room

by
December 2005–January 2006, no. 277

The Third Try: Can the UN work? by Alison Broinowski and James Wilkinson

Scribe, $35 pb, 318 pp

Book 2 Cover Small (400 x 600)

Australian and US Military Cooperation: Fighting common enemies by Christopher Hubbard

Ashgate, $89.95 hb, 181 pp

Global waiting room

by
December 2005–January 2006, no. 277

Reflecting on the sixty-year history of the United Nations, it seems obvious that this is an organisation created through the slow and tortured process of natural evolution rather than the product of careful, intelligent design.

Years ago, back when the UN had barely escaped its adolescence, the Nobel laureate and eminent diplomat Ralph Bunche observed that ‘the United Nations is a young organisation in the process of developing in response to challenges of all kinds’. He referred to institutional enlargement that typically continued as the global agenda grew. Agencies soon developed to coordinate the work of other agencies. Consequently, the modern UN became a haphazard creature, made up of a bewildering mix of political organs. Each part is intended to serve a different purpose, whether maintaining international security, advancing respect for fundamental human rights, or promoting economic development. And each component comes labelled with an almost impossible array of scientific-sounding designations (EcoSoc, for instance, UNEP, UNESCO, UNICEF and plenty more to make up page after page of abbreviation lists).

Daniel Flitton reviews ‘The Third Try’ by Alison Broinowski and James Wilkinson, ‘Australian and US Military Cooperation’ by Christopher Hubbard, ‘Dealing With America’ by John Langmore

The Third Try: Can the UN work?

by Alison Broinowski and James Wilkinson

Scribe, $35 pb, 318 pp

Book 2 Cover Small (400 x 600)

Australian and US Military Cooperation: Fighting common enemies

by Christopher Hubbard

Ashgate, $89.95 hb, 181 pp

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