Advertisement

Critics or Courtiers? R2P and the Status Quo

  • Aidan HehirEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter argues that Responsibility to Protect (R2P), despite repeated claims regarding its ostensibly transformative agenda, is an inherently conservative project. It is clear that respect for human rights has diminished while support for R2P amongst states has grown, yet R2P’s supporters have sought to obscure this disjuncture by proffering a narrative of “success”—and future progress—which lacks empirical and theoretical coherence. I thus argue that R2P is an inherently conservative project which, by virtue of its affirmation of the status quo, impels its supporters to exaggerate the responsiveness of the existing system to R2P. I illustrate this by examining the “R2P Focal Points” campaign which evidences this preference for garnering and celebrating rhetorical support amongst states rather than challenging state power or imposing constraints on state behaviour.

References

  1. Adams, Simon. 2015. Statement by Dr. Simon Adams on Behalf of the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect at the 2015 UN General Assembly Informal Interactive Dialogue on the Responsibility to Protect. September 8. http://www.globalr2p.org/publications/380.
  2. Adams, Simon. 2016. Statement of the Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect at the 2016 UN General Assembly Informal Interactive Dialogue on the Responsibility to Protect. September 6. http://www.globalr2p.org/media/files/2016-gcr2p-r2p-interactive-dialogue-statement.pdf.
  3. Amnesty International. 2015. Yemen: The Forgotten War. https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2015/09/yemen-the-forgotten-war/.
  4. Asia Pacific Centre for R2P. 2017. APR2P Statement UN Interactive Dialogue on R2P. September 5. http://responsibilitytoprotect.org/APR2P%20Statement%20UNGA%20Dialogue%20on%20R2P-2017%20(1).pdf.
  5. Bellamy, Alex. 2009. Responsibility to Protect: The Global Effort to End Mass Atrocities. London: Polity.Google Scholar
  6. Bellamy, Alex. 2010. Kosovo and the Advent of Sovereignty as Responsibility. In Kosovo, Intervention and Statebuilding, ed. Aidan Hehir. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  7. Bellamy, Alex. 2015. The Responsibility to Protect: A Defence. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Bellamy, Alex, and Paul Williams. 2011. The New Politics of Protection? Cote d’Ivoire, Libya and the Responsibility to Protect. International Affairs 82 (7): 825–850.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Bloomfield, Alan. 2016. Norm Antipreneurs and Theorising Resistance to Normative Change. Review of International Studies 42 (2): 310–333.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Booth, Ken. 1994. Human Wrongs and International Relations. International Affairs 71 (1): 103–126.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Boston Globe. 2017. What Trump Said About the Missile Strike Against Syria. April 7. https://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2017/04/06/read-full-text-trump-syria-speech/goi36mkYFMRQy8cJORGL9H/story.html.
  12. Chomsky, Noam. 2011. A New Generation Draws the Line: Humanitarian Intervention and the Responsibility to Protect Today. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  13. Cinq-Mars, Evan. 2015. In Support of R2P: No Need to Reinvent the Wheel. OpenCanada, March 18. https://www.opencanada.org/features/in-support-of-r2p-no-need-to-reinvent-the-wheel/.
  14. Cohen, Roberta. 2012. From Sovereign Responsibility to R2P. In The Routledge Handbook of the Responsibility to Protect, ed. Andy Knight, and Frazer Egerton. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
  15. Cunliffe, Philip (ed.). 2011. Critical Perspectives on the Responsibility to Protect. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  16. Davies, Sara, and Alex Bellamy. 2014. Don’t Be Too Quick to Condemn the UN Security Council Power of Veto. The Conversation, August 12. https://theconversation.com/dont-be-too-quick-to-condemn-the-un-security-council-power-of-veto-29980.
  17. De Franco, Chiara, Christoph Meyer, and Karen Smith. 2016. Europe and the European Union. In The Oxford Handbook of the Responsibility to Protect, ed. Alex Bellamy and Tim Dunne. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  18. Dunne, Tim, and Katherine Gelber. 2014. Arguing Matters: The Responsibility to Protect and the Case of Libya. Global Responsibility to Protect 6 (3): 326–349.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Dunne, Tim, and Katherine Gelber. 2015. Text and Context in the Responsibility to Protect: A Reply to Hehir. Global Responsibility to Protect 7 (2): 225–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Edwards, David, and David Cromwell. 2017. Yemen Vote—The Responsibility to Protect Profits. Media Lens, March 20. http://medialens.org/index.php/alerts/alert-archive/2016/830-yemen-vote-the-responsibility-to-protect-profits.html.
  21. Evans, Gareth. 2008. The Responsibility to Protect: Ending Mass Atrocity Crimes Once and For All. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.Google Scholar
  22. Evans, Gareth. 2011. The RtoP Balance Sheet After Libya. September 2. http://www.gevans.org/speeches/speech448%20interview%20RtoP.html.
  23. Evans, Gareth. 2015. Good International Citizenship. Keynote Address, Sydney University, Australia, August 27. http://gevans.org/speeches/speech580.html.
  24. Evans, Gareth. 2016. R2P: The Next Ten Years. In Oxford Handbook of the Responsibility to Protect, ed. Alex Bellamy and Tim Dunne. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  25. Glanville, Luke. 2016. Does R2P Matter? Interpreting the Impact of a Norm. Cooperation and Conflict 51 (2): 184–199.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2011. Meeting of National Focal Points on R2P. http://www.globalr2p.org/media/files/meeting-of-national-focal-points-of-r2p-convened-by.pdf.
  27. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2012. Second Annual Meeting of the Network of National R2P Focal Points. http://www.globalr2p.org/our_work/global_network_of_r2p_focal_points.
  28. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2013. Third Meeting of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points. http://www.globalr2p.org/our_work/global_network_of_r2p_focal_points.
  29. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2014. Fourth Meeting of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points. http://www.globalr2p.org/our_work/global_network_of_r2p_focal_points.
  30. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2015. Fifth Meeting of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points. http://www.globalr2p.org/our_work/global_network_of_r2p_focal_points.
  31. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2016a. Summary of the Sixth Annual Meeting of the Global Network of R2P Focal Points. http://www.globalr2p.org/our_work/global_network_of_r2p_focal_points.
  32. Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect. 2016b. Global Network of R2P Focal Points Fact Sheet. http://www.globalr2p.org/publications/435.
  33. Group of Friends of the Responsibility to Protect. 2016. Statement by the Group of Friends of the Responsibility to Protect in Geneva at the HRC 33 General Debate Item 10—Technical assistance and capacity-building. September 28. http://www.globalr2p.org/media/files/gof-hrc33-statement-on-technical-assistance-and-capacity-building.pdf.
  34. Hamburg, David. 2008. Preventing Genocide. Boulder, CO: Paradigm.Google Scholar
  35. Hehir, Aidan. 2012. The Responsibility to Protect: Rhetoric, Reality and the Future of Humanitarian Intervention. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Hehir, Aidan. 2013. The Permanence of Inconsistency: Libya, the Security Council and the Responsibility to Protect. International Security 38 (1): 137–159.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Hehir, Aidan. 2014. A Propensity to Ignore? R2P Advocacy and the Crisis in Gaza. E-International Relations, July 15. http://www.e-ir.info/2014/07/15/a-propensity-to-ignore-r2p-advocacy-and-the-crisis-in-gaza/.
  38. Hehir, Aidan. 2015a. From Human Security to the Responsibility to Protect: The Co-Option of Dissent? Michigan State International Law Review 23 (3): 675–699.Google Scholar
  39. Hehir, Aidan. 2015b. The Dog That Didn’t Bark? A Response to Dunne and Gelber’s Analysis of RtoP’s Influence on the Intervention in Libya. Global Responsibility to Protect 7 (2): 211–224.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Hehir, Aidan. 2015c. Bahrain: An R2P Blindspot? International Journal of Human Rights 19 (8): 1129–1147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Hehir, Aidan. 2017. Questioning the Turn Towards the “Responsibility to Prevent”. In Last Lectures on the Prevention and Intervention of Genocide, ed. Samuel Totten. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  42. Hehir, Aidan, and Jeremy Moses. 2015. Qatar’s Cynical Support Could Make a Mockery of the Responsibility to Protect. The Conversation, October 21. https://theconversation.com/qatars-cynical-support-could-make-a-mockery-of-the-responsibility-to-protect-48534.
  43. Herro, Annie. 2015. UN Emergency Peace Service and the Responsibility to Protect. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  44. Hollis, Rosemary. 2012. No Friend of Democratization: Europe’s Role in the “Arab Spring”. International Affairs 88 (1): 81–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Human Rights Watch. 2017a. Country Report: Cambodia. https://www.hrw.org/cambodia.
  46. Human Rights Watch. 2017b. Country Report: Qatar. https://www.hrw.org/middle-east/n-africa/qatar.
  47. International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty. 2001. The Responsibility to Protect. Ottawa: International Development Research Centre.Google Scholar
  48. International Crisis Group. 2011. Bahrain’s Rocky Road to Reform. Middle East/North Africa Report No. 111, July 28.Google Scholar
  49. Kaul, Inge. 1995. Peace Needs No Weapons. Ecumenical Review 47 (3): 313–319.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. King, Gary, Robert Keohane, and Sidney Verba. 1994. Designing Social Inquiry: Scientific Inference in Qualitative Research. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  51. Kowert, Paul, and Jeffrey Legro. 1996. Norms, Identity and Their Limits. In The Culture of National Security, ed. Peter Katzenstein. New York: Columbia Press.Google Scholar
  52. Legro, Jeffrey. 1997. Which Norms Matter? International Organisation 51 (1): 31–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Linklater, Andrew. 1998. The Transformation of Political Community. Oxford: Polity.Google Scholar
  54. Luck, Edward. 2015. The Responsibility to Protect at Ten: The Challenges Ahead. Stanley Foundation, Policy Brief. May. https://www.stanleyfoundation.org/policyanalysis.cfm?id=555.
  55. Mabera, Faith, and Yolanda Spies. 2016. How Well Does R2P Travel Beyond the West? In The Oxford Handbook of the Responsibility to Protect, ed. Alex Bellamy and Tim Dunne. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  56. Morris, Justin. 2013. Libya and Syria: R2P and the Spectre of the Swinging Pendulum. International Affairs 89 (5): 1265–1283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. The New Arab. 2016. Qatar Will Continue to Support Syria Regardless of US Help. November 17. https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2016/11/27/qatar-will-continue-supporting-syria-regardless-of-us-help.
  58. Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. 2018. Qatar. http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/MENARegion/Pages/QAIndex.aspx.
  59. Qatar Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 2017. Qatar Reiterates Its Continued Efforts to Promote Principle of “Responsibility to Protect”. September 6. https://www.mofa.gov.qa/en/all-mofa-news/details/2017/09/06/qatar-reiterates-its-continued-efforts-to-promote-principle-of-responsibility-to-protect.
  60. Quackenbush, Stephen. 2004. The Rationality of Rational Choice Theory. International Interactions 30 (2): 87–107.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Roff, Heather. 2013. Global Justice, Kant and the Responsibility to Protect: A Provisional Duty. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  62. Segal, Hugh. 2017. R2P: Still Relevant in a Trump World. OpenCanada, August 3. https://www.opencanada.org/features/seven-reasons-why-r2p-relevant-today/.
  63. Serrano, Monica. 2015. National Focal Points for R2P. In The Responsibility to Prevent, ed. Serena K. Sharma and Jennifer Welsh. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  64. Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 2013. List of Participants: Regional R2P National Focal Points Meeting for Europe Ljubljana. http://www.mzz.gov.si/fileadmin/pageuploads/Mednarodno_pravo/List_of_participants__NFP_R2P_Regional_meeting_for_Europe__Ljubljana__10_and_11_April_2013.pdf.
  65. The Stanley Foundation. 2015. The Responsibility to Protect at Ten: Perspectives and Opportunities. November. http://www.stanleyfoundation.org/resources.cfm?id=1581.
  66. Tafuri, David. 2017. Why Trump’s Attack on Syria Is Legal. Politico Magazine, April 13. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/04/donald-trump-syria-attack-legal-215022.
  67. Thomas, Nicholas, and William Tow. 2002. The Utility of Human Security: Sovereignty and Humanitarian Intervention. Security Dialogue 33 (2): 177–192.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Thompson, Alexander. 2002. Applying Rational Choice Theory to International Law: The Promise and Pitfalls. The Journal of Legal Studies 31 (1): S285–S306.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. UN News Centre. 2017. After 1,000 Days of Conflict, Yemen Sliding into “Deepening Catastrophe” UN Agencies Warn. December 30. http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=58369#.Wl3eGqhl_IU.
  70. United Nations Secretary General. 2016. Secretary-General’s Address at Event Co-organized by the United Nations Association of the United Kingdom and Chatham House. February 5. https://www.un.org/sg/en/content/sg/statement/2016-02-05/secretary-generals-address-event-co-organized-united-nations.
  71. Weiss, Thomas. 2007. Humanitarian Intervention. London: Polity.Google Scholar
  72. Weiss, Thomas. 2009. What’s Wrong with the United Nations and How to Fix It. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  73. Welsh, Jennifer. 2013. Norm Contestation and the Responsibility to Protect. Global Responsibility to Protect 5 (4): 365–396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Williams, Abiodun. 2015. The Possibilities of Preventative Diplomacy: The Case of Macedonia. In The Responsibility to Prevent, ed. Serena K. Sharma and Jennifer Welsh. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  75. Zuber, Robert. 2018. E-mail Correspondence with Author. January 15.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Politics and International RelationsUniversity of WestminsterLondonUK

Personalised recommendations