History is full of ironies and surprises. The end of the Cold War has injected some new vitality to the once moribund United Nations. Originally formed to promote peace, security, and cooperation among the world's nations, the United Nations, however, until recently was made alternately ineffective and irrelevant by the East-West and the North-South conflicts. But thanks to an increasing need for global governance in the post-Cold War era, the United Nations seems suddenly thrust back into limelight. It is entrusted to play an even more forceful role on a wide array of important issues in the future, from peace-keeping and humanitarian intervention to environmental protection, despite states' safeguard of their sacred sovereignty.1 In considerable measures, the United Nations has contributed to world peace and development, by bringing countries and peoples under its wings in attempts to resolve their conflicts and attain their common goals. The year 1995 marked the fiftieth anniversary of the founding of the United Nations. This milestone clearly shows that the United Nations has surpassed its predecessor, the League of Nations, in terms of both longevity and success.

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Copyright © 1996 Kluwer Law International. This chapter first appeared in The International Status of Taiwan in the New World Order: Legal and Political Considerations.

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