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Explain and assess the expanded role of the United Nations in the period since 1985.
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The United Nations has undergone a clearly identifiable expansion in both the range and size of its role since 1985. A new characterisation of the UN"s role as guardian of the state system has emerged. It incorporates new agendas for development and moral concerns, and reflects a willingness of states to set aside the traditional rule that intervention must be at the request of a state. The security of international order and the protection of the rights of individuals have been sought through interventions that would not have been thought of twenty years ago. The UN is no longer...
mechanism to a guardian of security and justice within states as well as between them. However, the expansion of the UNs role has coincided with the advancement of American hegemony around the world, and the current debate about the wisdom of going to war with Iraq has demonstrated that the USA is prepared to act unilaterally if it does not get the approval of the UN. The future might see the restraints replaced on the UN"s multilateral operation as policies are vetoed and governed by the fact that America alone seems to have the power to inaugurate any substantial intervention.
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