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Editor’s Introduction
Juliano Fiori

Freedoms, set out in 1941, provided particularly American inspiration for the post-war development of liberal global governance. 1 But the principles of great-power trusteeship and balancing, reflected in the Dumbarton Oaks proposals in 1944, were decisive in the creation of the United Nations. 2 Despite the early proliferation of liberal institutions under the aegis of the UN, Cold War prerogatives undermined cosmopolitan aspirations for world government. Cancelling each other out in the Security Council, the US and the Soviet Union

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
José Luís Fiori

collectively from a long battle within the American establishment, in which the military has, for the time being, gained the upper hand over civil servants and career politicians, with their cosmopolitan project of liberal order and rules-based global governance, initiated after the Second World War and expanded after the Cold War. If this victory is consolidated, it will bring an end to the American messianism of the twentieth century, with its division of the world between ‘good’ and ‘evil’, its globalising imperative to reorganise the world through the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Uses and Misuses of International Humanitarian Law and Humanitarian Principles
Rony Brauman

Cold War, which is endangering both humanitarian teams and the operations they conduct. References to ‘before’ have been heard since the mid-1990s, in the wake of the Bosnian War and the Tutsi genocide. The mass killings in Bosnia and Rwanda – coming on the heels of the Somali and Liberian civil wars – created a landscape of widespread violence, ‘anarchic conflicts’ in which not even humanitarian workers or journalists were safe. People stressed the contrast with earlier

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
A Model for Historical Reflection in the Humanitarian Sector
Kevin O’Sullivan and Réiseal Ní Chéilleachair

effectively than attempting to find answers to such far-reaching questions in a global context. Somalia was selected because of its pivotal role in redefining humanitarian aid in the post-Cold War era. The crisis in the region altered understandings of humanitarian intervention as a tool of international security, raised questions about NGO engagement with, or disregard for, local politics and offered massive logistical challenges in the delivery of aid ( Harper, 2012 ). Its legacy still

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Humanitarianism in a Post-Liberal World Order
Stephen Hopgood

own societies, especially as reformists of the centre left and right (Clinton, Blair) came to dominate the party-political scene after Thatcher and Reagan embedded the neoliberal revolution of the 1980s. After the Cold War, in other words, the liberal world order was a fact of life. In Margaret Thatcher’s immortal words, ‘there is no alternative’. The consequences of this focus on private enterprise, mobile money, weakened unions, reduced state welfare and regulation and lower taxes are all too visible today in areas like wealth inequality and

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Emmanuelle Strub

History Security-risk management has long been a concern at Médecins du Monde (MdM), as it was for other humanitarian agencies operating at the height of the Cold War. However, it was in the 1990s that security had to address its own set of issues. The collapse of the Soviet bloc and the post-Cold War conflicts created safety issues for humanitarian agencies: a booming aid sector led to an increase in exposure, together with a trend for

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Governing Precarity through Adaptive Design
Mark Duffield

Introduction Drawing its energy from the wave of New Left and counter-cultural radicalism of the 1960s ( Boltanski and Chiapello, 2005 ), an NGO-led direct humanitarian action pushed onto the international stage during the 1970s. The radicalism of this new anti-establishment sans frontières humanitarianism lay in its political challenge to the conventions of Cold War sovereignty. By being there on the ground it sought to hold sovereign power to account, witnessing its excesses while professing a face-to-face humanitarian

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Arjun Claire

–5). Témoignage , here, was not only an act of speaking out against state violence, but also an act of resistance against complicity with the notorious practices of the Ethiopian state. As cold war binaries collapsed in the 1990s, long-suppressed grievances erupted in the form of civil wars, posing new challenges to the stability of nation states. States retaliated viciously: from Iraqi Kurdistan to Rwanda, Bosnia, Kosovo and Chechnya, civilians came under increasing fire. Amid such

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Open Access (free)
Gender Equality and Culture in Humanitarian Action1
Ricardo Fal-Dutra Santos

.), Engaging Men in the Fight against Gender Violence: Case Studies from Africa ( New York : Palgrave Macmillan ), pp. 69 – 100 . Tickner , J. A. ( 2001 ), Gendering World Politics: Issues and Approaches in the Post-Cold War Era ( New York : Columbia University Press ). Tobin

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Marie-Luce Desgrandchamps, Lasse Heerten, Arua Oko Omaka, Kevin O'Sullivan, and Bertrand Taithe

the aftermath of the First World War, the period following the Second World War, and later, the post-Cold War 1990s. Biafra has certainly been mythologised by the humanitarian community. In the case of MSF [Medécins Sans Frontières], for example, it has been constructed in such a way as to reinforce a particular image of that organisation’s origins. Nonetheless, some of Biafra’s tropes are actually very useful for signalling its importance. The idea that this was the

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs