Tag Archives for UN

Below are all Moments in U.S. Diplomatic History tagged with, "UN".

Fleeing Rwanda to Survive, then Returning to Rebuild, 1994






On April 6, 1994, the presidents of Rwanda and Burundi were assassinated when their plane was shot down near Kigali airport and crashed into the grounds of the Rwandan presidential residence. The incident ignited genocide by the majority Hutus against Tutsis and against those supporting peace negotiations to bring Rwanda out of civil war. An […]




 A Man for all Transitions: Thomas Reeve Pickering






Considered by many the most accomplished diplomat of his generation, Thomas Reeve Pickering served as U.S. Ambassador to Jordan, Nigeria, El Salvador, Israel, India, and Russia. While serving as the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations The New York Times described him as “arguably the best-ever U.S. representative to that body.” He was Assistant […]




Teaching the Foreign Service to Speak Foreign Languages






The Foreign Service Institute (FSI) is the primary training institution to prepare American diplomats to advance U.S. foreign affairs interests, teaching, among other things, the languages of the countries where Foreign Service Officers will serve. At the National Foreign Affairs Training Center in Arlington, Virginia, FSI’s School of Language Studies provides 25 hours of classroom […]




The Long, Incomplete Road for the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty






The movement to limit or even prohibit the testing of nuclear weapons has been around almost since the dawn of the nuclear age itself. Concern over harming the environment and causing widespread damage to human life led to the Limited Test Ban Treaty in 1963 and the 1974 Threshold Test Ban Treaty, which limited underground […]




China’s Fight for Tiny Islands — The Taiwan Straits Crises, 1954-58






Recent disagreements over Beijing’s claim to the South China Seas (in which a tribunal constituted under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea issued a non-binding decision in July 2016 in favor of the Philippines) in many ways is reminiscent of the potentially far more serious clashes over the Taiwan Straits, the first of […]




Operation Storm — The Battle for Croatia, 1995






After the fall of Yugoslavia in the early 1990’s, the Balkans descended into a bloody ethnic and sectarian conflict. Although there were roughly six discrete Yugoslav conflicts, the first major war was the Croatian War for Independence. Starting in 1991, when Croatia declared its independence as a nation-state, the war was fought between forces loyal […]




The Marooned Law of the Sea Treaty






The Law of the Sea Treaty (formally known as the Third United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, or UNCLOSIII) is a 17 part agreement which was adopted in 1982 and which establishes a comprehensive set of rules governing oceans. Specifically, it defines the rights and responsibilities of nations regarding their use of the […]




“The World Was Tired of Haiti”: The 1994 U.S. Intervention






The United States found itself embroiled in several interventions in the 1990s that focused on upholding basic human rights standards and encouraging democratic regimes to flourish, from Somalia to the Balkans to America’s own backyard in the Caribbean. Despite Haiti being the second nation in the Western Hemisphere to proclaim independence, it has suffered from […]




How Did We Get Here? A Look Back at the Creation of the European Union






Welcome to Part I of our crash course on the formation of the European Union (EU). Each treaty signed between 1948 and 2007 brought Europe one step closer to today’s EU. Back in the aftermath of World War II, a group of European countries decided that the Dunkirk Treaty of 1947, which the UK and France […]




We Don’t Give a Dam — The Feud Over Financing the Aswan High Dam






Egypt’s agriculture has always depended on the water of the Nile; the river’s perennial floods, while critical in replenishing the fertile soil, constantly threatened to wash away a season’s harvest. The Aswan High Dam was built to regulate the river’s flooding as well as to create hydroelectric power and a reservoir for irrigation. Its planning […]