As we edge our way toward a new year, the breaking stories around the world show that old international ways are changing. The United Nations has again authorized member nations to send troops abroad in its name without flying its flag. The U.S. Marines, wearing desert-storm costumes, are serving porridge and playing High Fives with street children in Baidoa, while in New York the Secretary-General pretends there is no dispute between him and the Bush administration. Somehow, everyone hopes, the gunmen's hidden weapons may he turned in, not kept to he used again after the troops leave Somalia. In Bosnia there may be a real no-fly zone and there may soon be troops in Kosovo and Macedonia. It is uncertain what all this means for the vaunted principle of sovereignty.
Elsewhere, nations are feeling the effects of the breakdown of the cold war. In the Philippines, peace may be breaking out. Those old comrades-in-arms, South Africa and Israel, may soon have to recognize strict global standards of behavior. Perhaps the Guatemalan army and their Israeli military suppliers will also feel the pressure of world opinion, now that Rigoberta Menchu has told us about their genocidal behavior.
And there are other changes, too, including new talk of using the United Nations for peacemaking, and of changing its structure. Hans Sinn argues that U.N. reforms will not originate at its headquarters, but in the governments of the member states. That's why he proposes that Canadians review our own policies.
In this issue of the magazine, you will find some reasons to celebrate. Chandler Davis's friends have been celebrating his retirement with affection, A group of women celebrated "partnership" in Crete a few months ago, and explored new ways of bringing security to the world. Joanna Santa Barbara brings us a book review that celebrates the peacemaking activities of apes.
You'll also find some bad news here, including a horrible news item about rape camps run by Serbians for "ethnic cleansing." Read it and then tell Barbara McDougall and your own Member of Parliament that you want Canadian intervention to stop this practice.
Finally, as for Peace Magazine's plans, I can hint at some of the things we are hoping to accomplish this year. We will be working more closely with Science for Peace, reporting some of their public events. We also hope to produce two special issues on Peacekeeping and Peacemaking. We need some extra money to make this possible, so please remember us when next you have your chequebook out, paying the Christmas bills.