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The Future of Intervention: Examining the Legacy of the Responsibility to Protect

Military intervention is a prospect that carries both great potential for good and terrible possibilities for destruction. The application of military force is utilized by both regional and global powers, with wide-reaching implications. While the United States has repeatedly chosen to deploy the military in crisis situations around the globe since World War II, its actions have not always achieved the desired results or have had unintended consequences that undermine US security or foreign policy objectives. Amid calls for a reevaluation of the process leading to intervention, many experts look to international law and the international community to guide the response to this evolving norm. One critical element to the future of this debate is the standards set forth by the Responsibility to Protect (R2P), an emerging norm backed by the UN as a framework to manage crises that could demand international intervention. The central question to this study is: Would embracing the principles of the Responsibility to Protect improve the success of US-backed military intervention efforts? This paper will examine past interventions and seek to determine better guidance to the future of implementing military intervention.

Gilman, William Senior Thesis

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