Stewart M. Patrick

The Internationalist

Patrick assesses the future of world order, state sovereignty, and multilateral cooperation.

Course Correction: WHO Reform after Ebola

by Stewart M. Patrick and Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Tuesday, January 27, 2015
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan addresses the media during the Executive Board's special session on Ebola on January 25, 2015. World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Margaret Chan addresses the media during the Executive Board's special session on Ebola on January 25, 2015 (Pierre Albouy/Courtesy Reuters).

Coauthored with Daniel Chardell, research associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program at the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more »

Limiting the Security Council Veto in the Face of Mass Atrocities

by Stewart M. Patrick Friday, January 23, 2015
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius speaks at a session of the UN Security Council on September 19, 2014. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius speaks at a session of the UN Security Council on September 19, 2014 (Shannon Stapleton/Courtesy Reuters).

PARIS — The veto held by the five permanent members (P5) of the UN Security Council is one of the most contentious rules of the United Nations. It was included in the UN Charter of 1945 as the explicit price for agreement among the P5—the members that bore the greatest responsibility for maintaining world order—to establish the UN in the first place. However, the veto has repeatedly stymied the Security Council in the face of mass atrocities, despite unanimous endorsement by all UN member states of their individual and collective responsibility to protect (R2P) all people from crimes against humanity. Read more »

The Arms Trade Treaty: Time to Celebrate?

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Monday, December 29, 2014
An activist campaigning for the global arms trade treaty holds a placard during a protest in New Delhi (Adnan Abidi/Courtesy Reuters). An activist campaigning for the global arms trade treaty holds a placard during a protest in New Delhi (Adnan Abidi/Courtesy Reuters).

Below is a guest post by Naomi Egelresearch associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program. Read more »

2015: Seven Global Summits That Deserve Your Attention

by Stewart M. Patrick Monday, December 22, 2014
A view of Mount Everest, the world's highest mountain, in the Himalayas. A view of Mount Everest, the world's highest mountain, in the Himalayas (Tim Chong/Courtesy Reuters).

There are a lot of perks to being a world leader. Attending far-flung conferences, it’s safe to say, is not one of them. But however much Barack Obama and his counterparts grouse about jet lag, global summits will continue to play an indispensable part in governing an unruly world. Even when overly choreographed and scripted, these events give presidents and prime ministers a rare opportunity to establish a personal rapport, speak candidly on tough items, and break logjams to international cooperation. In the latest Council of Councils Global Memo, I preview seven summits to watch in 2015.

No Blue, No Green: Climate Change and the Fate of the Oceans

by Stewart M. Patrick Friday, December 12, 2014
A Chinese fishing vessel that ran aground in Tubbataha Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is pictured in Palawan Province, west of Manila. A Chinese fishing vessel that ran aground in Tubbataha Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is pictured in Palawan Province, west of Manila (Naval Forces West/Courtesy Reuters).

Coauthored with Alexandra Kerr, assistant director of the International Institutions and Global Governance program at the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more »

A Massive Humanitarian Failure in Syria

by Stewart M. Patrick and Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Friday, December 5, 2014
A Syrian girl carries bread in the Bab al-Salam refugee camp in Azaz, near the Syrian-Turkish border, October 27, 2014. A Syrian girl carries bread in the Bab al-Salam refugee camp in Azaz, near the Syrian-Turkish border, October 27, 2014 (Hosam Katan/Courtesy Reuters).

Coauthored with Shervin Ghaffari, intern in the International Institutions and Global Governance program at the Council on Foreign Relations. Read more »

Meeting Halfway: Nuclear Weapon States and the Humanitarian Disarmament Initiative

by Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Thursday, December 4, 2014
Anti-nuclear weapons demonstrators protest in New York ahead of the May 2010 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference. Anti-nuclear weapons demonstrators protest in New York ahead of the May 2010 Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty Review Conference (Chip East/Courtesy Reuters).

Below is a guest post by Naomi Egelresearch associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program. Read more »

African Union Peace Operations: From Rhetoric to Reality

by Stewart M. Patrick Monday, November 17, 2014
An African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) soldier stands guard atop an armored vehicle in Mogadishu, Somalia, November 2013. An African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) soldier stands guard atop an armored vehicle in Mogadishu, Somalia, November 2013 (Siegfried Modola/Courtesy Reuters).

—Djibouti, East Africa

The slogan of “African solutions to African problems” has long been a seductive mantra, attractive to African and Western governments alike. The phrase suggests a new era of continental responsibility in which African countries themselves—rather than former colonial powers, the United States, or even the United Nations (UN)—play a bigger role in delivering regional peace and security. The vision of a self-confident, united, and capable Africa has obvious attractions on the continent. But it also appeals to Washington, which increasingly views instability and violence within Africa’s many fragile states as enabling conditions for terrorists and violent extremists ranging from Boko Haram to al-Shabab to al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM). Read more »

On the Line in Brisbane: Global Growth and G20 Credibility

by Stewart M. Patrick and Guest Blogger for Stewart M. Patrick Wednesday, November 12, 2014
U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and his Australian counterpart Joe Hockey speak at a media conference at the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in the Australian city of Cairns on September 19, 2014. U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and his Australian counterpart Joe Hockey speak at a media conference at the G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in the Australian city of Cairns on September 19, 2014 (Lincoln Feast/Courtesy Reuters).

Coauthored with Daniel Chardell, research associate in the International Institutions and Global Governance program. Read more »

More Treaty Gridlock: Another Impact of GOP Senate Takeover

by Stewart M. Patrick Monday, November 10, 2014
U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell holds a news conference on the day after he was re-elected to the U.S. Senate at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky, on November 5, 2014. U.S. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell holds a news conference on the day after he was re-elected to the U.S. Senate at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky, on November 5, 2014 (John Sommers II/Courtesy Reuters).

The Republican takeover of the Senate reduces the chance that the United States will ratify any important multilateral treaties over the next two years. Facing a GOP-controlled legislature, President Obama will focus his executive authority on salvaging what remains of his domestic agenda, rather than playing hardball in the field of foreign policy.With the exception of trade agreements—endorsed by incoming majority leader Mitch McConnell—don’t look for any movement on treaties. Read more »