This article argues that how the United Nations (UN) conceptualizes legitimacy is not only a matter of legalism or power politics. The UN’s conception of legitimacy also utilizes concepts, language and symbolism from the religious realm. Understanding the entanglement between political and religious concepts and the ways of their verbalization at the agential level sheds light on how legitimacy became to be acknowledged as an integral part of the UN and how it changes.
Next to military means, causing disruption and interdiction, Western and local powers also relied on policies of containment to halt the expansion of the Islamic State’s territorial strongholds. Yet, a Cold War state-based strategy of containment seems not apt to counter a transformed Islamic State. This article, first, examines why containing the Islamic State was successful in the past.
The unconventional nature of Holy See diplomats rests in the composite character of their ecclesiastical role as the Pope’s representatives and their legal diplomatic status and commencement to ordinary diplomatic practice. Holy See diplomacy is a form of conduct created by a set of mixed secular and religious standards in which agents are guided by practices. I locate this argument within a classical English School and a conventional understanding of practice, diplomacy, and agency while incorporating understandings of the diplomat as a stranger.
In this article, I argue that there is a startling resonance between Hans Morgenthau’s conception of the political and power and recent analyses of an urbanizing international realm. By making this connection clear, I depart from a mechanistic understanding of politics, which tends to inform both conventional International Relations views and some claims in urban studies pertaining to the rise of global cities as international actors.
Despite recent studies on leadership, the discipline of International Relations is still reluctant to engage in studies of individual agency in the international structure. Two prominent examples are the leader of the Catholic Church, the pope, and the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General (UNSG). Neither of them is a leader in control of considerable hard power, yet both exemplify the puzzle of how institutions, individuals, and moral authority relate in leadership.
Targeted killing by drones is a systemic driven instrumental practice that overrides societal non-instrumental practices that are essential for international society. Doing so, targeted killing by drones is not simply another form of inflicting violence by technical means to political opponents. It also inflicts the agents applying this practice, tempting them to frame it as a permissible measure to preserve international society.