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The Responsibility to ProtectA Defense$
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Alex J. Bellamy

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198704119

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704119.001.0001

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Legacies of Empire, Failures of Will

Legacies of Empire, Failures of Will

Chapter:
(p.38) 2 Legacies of Empire, Failures of Will
Source:
The Responsibility to Protect
Author(s):

Alex J. Bellamy

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704119.003.0003

This chapter explores why the international community has so often failed to protect people from genocide and mass atrocities. On the one hand, it shows that the colonial experience has made many states wary of Western interventionism and protective of their sovereignty. As a result, the contemporary international order is governed by rules designed to protect rights of self-determination through rules dictating non-interference. The chapter points out that there are perfectly good reasons for international politics to be guided by these rules. On the other hand, failures to protect are sometimes born of states’ unwillingness to commit resources to help people in foreign countries. This chapter sets out the myriad reasons that mitigate against committing resources and people to “save strangers” abroad.

Keywords:   empire, political will, sovereignty, non-interference, self-determination, media, CNN effect

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