Although the term ‘human security’ has various meanings, two have predominated. Following the Cold War, several major studies—including the UN Secretary-General’s 1992 report, Agenda for Peace; the 1994 World Development Report of the UN Development Program; and the 2003 report, Human Security Now, by the UN Commission on Human Security—proposed peaceful alternatives to military security. This shifted the traditional meaning of security from national defense to social development and the rights of civilians. Meanwhile, a second branch of human security was examining reasons why the international community should intervene in a sovereign state, which jeopardizes the safety and security of its people through political violence or military aggression. The principle of responsibility to protect (R2P) was put forward by the 2001 report of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty to bring peace and legal order to citizens whose lives are endangered by their own government.
This article can be found in the Fall | Winter 2011 issue of Kosmos Journal. To download this article as a PDF, please click the link below.
James Bernard Quilligan has been an analyst and administrator in the field of international development since 1975. He has served as policy advisor and writer for many international politicians and leaders,