How important is the Role of Small States Security in the Maintenance of International Peace and Security?

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Henderson, Alex
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University of Malta; DiploFoundation
The game of International Peace and Security has for a long time been one played only by the great powers, leading to the singling out of small states in its deliberations. These states would create their own rules and be their own referees, whilst the existing small states would conduct themselves as mere spectators. However, following the effects of the end of the two World Wars,the creation of the UN and decolonization, the role of small states in the maintenance of international peace and security has gathered new responsibilities and in consequence it has made them important agents and messengers of peace. As a result of this their relevance to international peace and security has had many positive effects on international law and norms that aims to safeguard and promote the ideals of sovereignty, global stability and the common good. This dissertation seeks to provide an understanding of this evolution and key characteristics of small states security in the post-Cold War international system. It will also attempt to explain how and why small states are essential to the global security landscape and what are the factors that restrict them from having greater influence on international peace and security.