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date: 22 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article looks at the rise of peace building and state building as diplomatic practices, some of the problems that have emerged, and the prospects for near-term improvement or at least clarity as to a way forward. It addresses the question of whether is it even possible to establish the necessary political and economic conditions for legitimate and sustainable national governance through a period of benevolent foreign autocracy under UN auspices. This contradiction between ends and means has plagued recent efforts to govern post-conflict territories in the Balkans, East Timor, Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere. The challenges before the United Nations now are not to develop grand theories or a revivified trusteeship capacity. Rather, what is required is a set of workable strategies and tactics with which to support institutions of the state before, during, and after conflict.

Keywords: diplomacy, diplomatic practices, state building, peace building

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