Peacekeeping in the Congo, 1999-2001: Success or Failure?
SAMS Monograph rept. Jun 2013-May 2014
ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLLEGE FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES
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The Second Congo War caused an estimated 5.4 million war-related deaths. The conflict was a complex mixture of ethnic violence and economic exploitation that in many ways still continues today. The belligerent nations attempted to establish a peace process. The United Nations UN Security Council authorized the United Nations Mission to the Congo MONUC in 1999 to assist in the peace process. The results of the mission have been unimpressive and have failed to stop the fighting in the Democratic Republic of the Congo DRC. Recently, the UN authorized another UN Intervention Force with a new mandate to disarm rebel groups inside the DRC. The question is whether the new mandate will be any more successful than those of the past Assessing the prospects of the UN intervention force essentially requires determining why the previous MONUC efforts failed and whether the new mission will change the factors that led to failure. To determine why MONUC was not able to stop the fighting in the DRC required analysis of three different aspects of the conflict the social and economic circumstances of the conflict, the ceasefire and peace enforcement agreements, and the application of peace operation fundamentals. The social and economic circumstances surrounding the conflict created obstacles to efforts to stop the fighting, and increased the incentive for some nations to continue the conflict. The frameworks of the Lusaka Cease Fire Agreement and the Security Council resolutions that mandated the MONUC mission did not provide the appropriate authority to put a stop to the fighting. Additionally, the mandates and legal frameworks did not address some of the fundamental issues related to disarmament, demilitarization, and reintegration and peace operations that enable a peacekeeping force to succeed. Regional political rivalries, ethnic violence, ungoverned armed rebel groups, and lucrative economic incentives all worked together to prevent the end of the conflict in the DRC.
- Government and Political Science