• The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and the Problem of Political Will

    The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) was created in the hope of overcoming the barrier that state sovereignty, as a principle, had become to actions of humanitarian intervention. It was imagined that as mass atrocity crimes were coming to the attention of the international community, that, on the whole, they were willing, able and eager to intervene in order to stop the violence in question. Holding them back was sovereignty as both a legal and normative barrier. This was always a bad explanation for the pervasive lack of humanitarian intervention; accordingly R2P, as a bad solution, has failed almost entirely. The problem is, and always has been, that when faced with mass atrocity crimes, the international community is plagued by a near-permanent lack of political will to action.

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