This volume distinguishes itself from the many others written recently on U.N. peacekeeping by trading breadth for depth, covering the U.N. Transitional Authority in Cambodia and the U.N. Observer Mission in El Salvador with detailed chapters on all aspects -- diplomatic, military, and humanitarian -- of their missions. The book concludes that these cases could be considered "qualified successes" because they proceeded, in contrast to Bosnia and Somalia, in situations of preexisting political consent. The Cambodia chapters were, unfortunately, completed before the collapse of the Khmer Rouge and the coup by Hun Sen. The gloomy conclusion is that even relatively favorable initial conditions and massive international investment are often not sufficient to produce a just peace.
Get the best of Foreign Affairs' book reviews delivered to you.
More Reviews on Political and Legal From This Issue