Developed for the 2001-2002 Essay Contest, this guide contains mapping activities on the locations of military forces and peace operations, a simulation exercise on a fictional crisis in "San Dimas", a Kosovo case study, and bibliographic materials that look at issues related to peace operations, national security, and military operations.

Objectives of the Teaching Guide

  • To assist students in gaining an understanding of US foreign policy, history, and the nature of peacekeeping and peace enforcement operations.
  • To make students aware of the current debate on the U.S. military’s role in international peacekeeping
  • To provide teachers with lesson plans, bibliographic sources, and factual material to assist them in preparing students to write essays for submission to the National Peace Essay Contest.
  • To enable classroom teachers, contest coordinators, and students to:
    • Understand the overall theme of the essay topic;
    • Define and understand concepts contained in the essay question;
    • Identify current U.S. military deployment abroad;
    • Review bibliographic resources and select sources for research;
    • Analyze opposing viewpoints on U.S. involvement in peace operations and formulate a thesis for essays;
    • Examine cases of U.S. participation in peace operations and apply that information to the essay;
    • Write, edit, and submit essays to the United States Institute of Peace.
  • To meet National Content Standards in Civics, Language Arts, Life Skills, U.S. History, and World History.

Latest Publications

One Year Later, Taliban Unable to Reverse Afghanistan’s Economic Decline

One Year Later, Taliban Unable to Reverse Afghanistan’s Economic Decline

Monday, August 8, 2022

By: William Byrd, Ph.D.

Afghanistan’s economy was already deteriorating before the Taliban takeover of the country on August 15, 2021, suffering from severe drought, the COVID-19 pandemic, declining confidence in the previous government, falling international military spending as U.S. and other foreign troops left, human and capital flight, and Taliban advances on the battlefield. Then came the abrupt cutoff of civilian and security aid (more than $8 billion per year, equivalent to 40% of Afghanistan’s GDP) immediately after the Taliban takeover. No country in the world could have absorbed such an enormous economic shock — exacerbated by sanctions, the freezing of Afghanistan’s foreign exchange reserves and foreign banks’ reluctance to do business with the country.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & GovernanceEconomics

Philippines: Seizing the Opportunity Offered by the Bangsamoro Transition Extension

Philippines: Seizing the Opportunity Offered by the Bangsamoro Transition Extension

Friday, August 5, 2022

By: Mary Ann M. Arnado

On October 28, 2021, Rodrigo Duterte, then president of the Philippines, signed into law a three-year extension of the transition period of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. The region’s first parliamentary elections are now scheduled for May 2025, alongside the national elections. In 2021, the Mindanao Peoples Caucus (MPC) actively campaigned for the extension of the transition period to provide more time for the Bangsamoro Transition Authority and the Philippine government to fully implement and deliver the commitments they made in the 2014 peace agreement between the national government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The agreement grants greater political autonomy to the southern Mindanao region.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Peace Processes

How Should the U.S. Respond to China’s ‘Global Security Initiative?’

How Should the U.S. Respond to China’s ‘Global Security Initiative?’

Thursday, August 4, 2022

By: Carla Freeman, Ph.D.;  Alex Stephenson

After Russia invaded Ukraine, some hoped that China would use its “no limits” partnership with Moscow and multifaceted relationship with Kyiv to help prevent the conflict from escalating. The European Union’s foreign policy chief pointed to China as the obvious mediator and some among China’s policy elite also called publicly on their government to play a proactive role in helping to resolve the war. One prominent American intellectual urged Chinese President Xi Jinping to seize his “Teddy Roosevelt Moment,” referring to Roosevelt’s Nobel Peace Prize winning mediation of the 1905 Russia-Japan war. For its part, Beijing indicated it was prepared to help mediate but it would do so “in its own way.”

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Global Policy

Diálogos de Seguridad Ciudadana en Colombia

Diálogos de Seguridad Ciudadana en Colombia

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

La firma del Acuerdo de Paz del 2016 entre el gobierno colombiano y las FARC-EP abrió nuevas ventanas de oportunidad para transformar paradigmas de seguridad que respondan mejor a las necesidades y prioridades de la ciudadanía. Sin embargo, la implementación equitativa del Acuerdo en zonas rurales del territorio sigue siendo un desafío.

Type: Fact Sheet

Justice, Security & Rule of Law

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