The changing role of international organisations: the league and the UN, 1919–c2011 Edexcel IGCSE Teaching Resources

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Paper 2: Breadth Studies, The changing role of international organisations - the League and the UN, 1919-2011

What students need to learn:

  • The creation and successes of the League, 1919–29 
    • Woodrow Wilson and the setting up of the League. The Covenant of the League of Nations. Membership; Assembly, Council, Secretariat, League agencies and commissions. Successes of the League, including the Aaland Islands (1920), Upper Silesia (1921), the Greek-Bulgarian War (1925), Refugee and Drugs Committee. 
  • The League challenged, 1930–39 
    • The roles of the Great Powers, including the problem of the veto and the failure to curb the dictators. Failures in Manchuria (1931–33), Abyssinia (1935–36). The continuing work of the specialised agencies, including the Child Welfare Committee and the slavery commissions. 
  • Setting up the United Nations Organisation and its work to 1964 
    • Setting up of the UN and the UN Charter, including structural problems. General Assembly and Security Council, Secretariat, secretary-general, UN peacekeeping forces, Human Rights Commission and UN agencies, the continuing work of the ILO, and the Refugee Organisations; the Mandates Commission and the Disarmament Commission, WHO, FAO, UNESCO and UNICEF. The UN role in Palestine (1947–49), the Korean War (1950–53), and the Congo (1960–64). 
  • The UN challenged, 1967–89 
    • Case studies in limited success, including the UN role in the Middle East, especially the continuing Palestine problem – Resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) – and the problem of Lebanon (1975–85). The attempt to resolve disputes in Namibia (1989). The problem of Security decisions – the ‘Permanent 5’.
  • The UN at bay, 1990–2011 
    • UN attempts to find long-term peace in identity wars, including Somalia (1991–95), Bosnia (1992–95). The Balkans (1991–99). Mozambique (1990–94) and Sudan (2005–11). The UN role in the Gulf Wars. Obstacles to success.

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