Humanitarian Diplomacy: Practitioners And Their Craft by Larry Minear, Hazel Smith

By Larry Minear, Hazel Smith

Humanitarian execs are at the entrance strains of trendy inner armed conflicts, negotiating entry via actual and diplomatic roadblocks to arrive imperiled civilians. They widespread the corridors of strength, interceding with politicians and diplomats in international locations wracked by means of violence, in capitals of donor governments that underwrite humanitarian paintings, and on the United international locations protection Council. they supply the media with authoritative and catalytic information regarding occasions of humanitarian extremity. Humanitarian international relations deals a compendium of humanitarian operations in settings as diversified because the Balkans, Nepal, Somalia, and East Timor, from the Nineteen Seventies in Cambodia and Nineteen Eighties in Lebanon to more moderen engagements in Colombia and Iraq. those distinct reviews and insights from the sphere are framed via context-setting essays at the concept and perform of humanitarian international relations. This quantity presents a different source for practitioners, coverage groups, and scholars of humanitarian motion, in addition to for the involved public.

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6. 2. Oren R. Young and Gail Osherenko, Polar Politics: Creating Environmental Regimes, Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1993, p. 1. 3. See, for example, The Responsibility to Protect: Report of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty, Ottawa: International Development Research Centre, December 2001. 4. See also Larry Minear, ‘‘Lessons Learned: The Darfur Experience’’, in Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance (ALNAP), Annual Review of Humanitarian Action 2005, London: ALNAP, 2005.

The experiences examined by the case studies, and the discussions held along the way among the practitioner-authors, suggest that the generation of support for humanitarian operations, and for trouble-shooting when needed, is an element too important to be left to professional diplomats or to others who often lack a basic understanding of the principles and specificities of the humanitarian enterprise. The framework within which formal diplomacy is conducted is focused on state actors and perceived national interests.

He had been, he said, dealt a weak hand from a stacked deck. When sitting down at the negotiating table with his opposite number, what, after all, can an aid official expect to extract, and at what price? Compromises are the essence of negotiation. The fear of the negotiator – diplomat, labour relations lawyer and aid agency executive alike – is that, in the give-and-take process, compromise will turn out to be a matter of ‘‘I give and you take’’. What do the experiences chronicled in this volume suggest about humanitarian principles and the extent to which they are negotiable?

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