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U.N. Peacekeeping: Issues Related to Effectiveness, Cost, and Reform (Testimony, 04/09/97, GAO/T-NSIAD-97-139).

GAO discussed the results of the body of work GAO has completed on
issues concerning the effectiveness and cost of United Nations (U.N.)
peacekeeping, focusing on: (1) the U.N.'s limitations in conducting
peace operations that require the use of force; (2) long-standing
peacekeeping missions that are from 6 to nearly 50 years old; (3) the
extent to which the United States has provided voluntary support to
U.N.-sanctioned peace operations; and (4) the U.N.'s efforts to reform
the management of peacekeeping operations.

GAO noted that: (1) over the years, the United Nations has had some
degree of success in carrying out peacekeeping missions where the use of
force was not required; (2) however, as the Cold War came to a close and
the United Nations was called on to lead large complex missions that
required the use of force to restore peace and security, the United
Nations was less successful; (3) there are clearly many reasons for
this, including the failure to commit sufficient resources, the lack of
sufficient will on the part of the international community, an
inadequate operational structure for carrying out such missions, and the
differences in the geopolitical situations that affect the execution of
each mission; (4) GAO concluded that the organizational limits of the
United Nations put at risk the success of such missions; (5) the United
Nations also seeks the consent of the warring parties to carry out its
mandate, even when force is authorized; (6) because of these
limitations, GAO concluded that the United nations may not be an
appropriate vehicle to lead missions where force is required to restore
peace, unless a nation or coalition with sufficient military capability
and commitment leads the operation; (7) in recognition of the limited
success of operations such as those that required the use of force and
the inability to bring closure to several long-standing missions, U.S.
and U.N. policy has become more focused; (8) there is now general
agreement that the main objective of peacekeeping is to reduce tensions
and provide a limited period of time for diplomatic efforts to find a
solution to the underlying conflicts; (9) despite the success of U.N.
peacekeeping over the last 50 years, some situations have proven to be
intractable, and the peacekeeping missions have evolved into open-ended
commitments; (10) although the eight long-term missions GAO analyzed
have become, in essence, open ended commitments, U.S. officials support
continuing all of them because in their view the missions help stabilize
and prevent the recurrence of conflicts in areas vital to U.S.
interests; (11) in addition to paying assessed contributions for U.N.
peacekeeping operations, the United States often provides additional
support to U.N.-sanctioned missions for which it is not reimbursed; (12)
the United Nations has undertaken management reforms to improve the
operational effectiveness and efficiency of its peacekeeping missions; *

--------------------------- Indexing Terms -----------------------------

 REPORTNUM:  T-NSIAD-97-139
     TITLE:  U.N. Peacekeeping: Issues Related to Effectiveness, Cost, 
             and Reform
      DATE:  04/09/97
   SUBJECT:  International organizations
             United Nations military forces
             Military intervention
             International cooperation
             International relations
             Military operations
             Foreign military assistance
             Foreign governments
             Foreign policies
             Cost effectiveness analysis
IDENTIFIER:  Namibia
             Central America
             Bosnia
             Somalia
             Rwanda
             Haiti
             Eastern Slavonia
             India
             Pakistan
             Cyprus
             Angola
             Iraq
             Kuwait
             Western Sahara
             Lebanon
             Yugoslavia
             Congo
             Golan Heights (Syria)
             Middle East
             Kashmir
             Cambodia
             
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Cover
================================================================ COVER


Before the Committee on International Relations,
House of Representatives

For Release on Delivery
Expected at
10:00 a.m., EDT
Wednesday,
April 9, 1997

U.N.  PEACEKEEPING - ISSUES
RELATED TO EFFECTIVENESS, COST,
AND REFORM

Statement of Harold J.  Johnson, Associate Director,
International Relations and Trade Issues,
National Security and International Affairs Division

GAO/T-NSIAD-97-139

GAO/NSIAD-97-139T


(711264)


Abbreviations
=============================================================== ABBREV


============================================================ Chapter 0

Mr.  Chairman and Members of the Committee: 

I am pleased to be here today to discuss the results of the body of
work we have completed on issues concerning the effectiveness and
cost of U.N.  peacekeeping.\1

Specifically, my statement will address four key issues:  (1) the
U.N.'s limitations in conducting peace operations that require the
use of force, (2) long-standing peacekeeping missions that are from 6
to nearly 50 years old, (3) the extent to which the United States has
provided voluntary support to U.N.-sanctioned peace operations, and
(4) the U.N.'s efforts to reform the management of peacekeeping
operations. 

Mr.  Chairman, before elaborating on these issues let me summarize my
remarks. 


--------------------
\1 A list of GAO products on peace operations is attached to this
statement. 


   SUMMARY
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1


      LIMITS ON SUCCESS OF U.N. 
      PEACE OPERATIONS REQUIRING
      THE USE OF FORCE
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1.1

Over the years, the United Nations has had some degree of success in
carrying out peacekeeping missions where the use of force was not
required.  Examples of this might include the U.N.  Transition
Assistance Group in Namibia and the U.N.  Observer Group in Central
America.  However, as the Cold War came to a close and the United
Nations was called on to lead large complex missions that required
the use of force to restore peace and security, the United Nations
was demonstrably less successful.  There are clearly many reasons for
this, including the failure to commit sufficient resources, the lack
of sufficient will on the part of the international community, an
inadequate operational structure for carrying out such missions, and
the differences in the geopolitical situations that affect the
execution of each mission. 

Nonetheless, our analysis of seven operations that called for the use
of force--either directly by citing Chapter VII of the U.N.  Charter
or implied by the wording of their mandates\2 --led us to the
conclusion that the reasons for a lack of success were deeper than
the conventional wisdom.  We concluded that the organizational limits
of the United Nations put at risk the success of such missions. 
Specifically, unlike a sovereign nation, the United Nations (1)
cannot conscript troops and resources when necessary but must rely on
sovereign members to voluntarily provide them and (2) has no
assurance that national troop contingents will carry out orders
issued by a U.N.  force commander.  The United Nations also seeks the
consent of the warring parties to carry out its mandate, even when
force is authorized.  These organizational limits were particularly
apparent in Bosnia, Somalia, and Rwanda. 

Because of these limitations, we concluded that the United Nations
may not be an appropriate vehicle to lead missions where force is
required to restore peace, unless a nation or coalition with
sufficient military capability and commitment leads the operation. 
The U.N.'s limits in leading operations requiring the use of force
have become increasingly accepted by experts on peacekeeping and by
U.N.  officials.  This lesson is also reflected in U.S.  policy and
recent actions by the United States and the U.N.  Security Council in
ensuring acceptable leadership and support for the operations in
Haiti and Eastern Slavonia. 


--------------------
\2 These include the U.N.  peace operations in the Congo, Lebanon,
Somalia, Bosnia, Haiti, Rwanda, and Eastern Slavonia. 


      STATUS OF LONG-STANDING
      PEACEKEEPING MISSIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1.2

In recognition of the limited success of operations such as those
that required the use of force and the inability to bring closure to
several long-standing missions, U.S.  and U.N.  policy has become
more focused.  There is now general agreement that the main objective
of peacekeeping is to reduce tensions and provide a limited period of
time for diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the underlying
conflicts.  Thus, peacekeeping missions are not to be open-ended
commitments, and U.S.  policy tries to ensure their effectiveness by
seeing that they deploy in support of peacemaking efforts; have
clear, realistic objectives; and have end points and exit strategies. 
These guidelines were articulated in a May 1994 public summary of
Presidential Decision Directive 25 (PDD-25), the administration's
policy on peace operations.  To further ensure peacekeeping's value,
PDD-25 also directed U.S.  officials to consider vetoing the renewal
of long-standing missions that are not achieving their mandates. 

Despite the success of U.N.  peacekeeping over the last 50 years,
some situations have proven to be intractable, and the peacekeeping
missions have evolved into open-ended commitments.  At your request,
we analyzed the eight U.N.  operations that are from 6 to nearly 50
years old--including the peace operations in India and Pakistan,
Cyprus, Angola, Iraq and Kuwait, the Western Sahara, and three in the
Middle East.  We focused specifically on whether these older missions
are fulfilling their mandates and, if not, why the executive branch
continues to support them.  We found that three missions--the ones in
Lebanon and the Western Sahara and the one between India and
Pakistan--essentially were not achieving their mandates, and,
according to U.N.  reports, had contributed marginally to more secure
and stable environments.  Three others--including the U.N.  Truce
Supervision Organization in the Middle East and the missions in
Angola and Cyprus--were only partially achieving their mandates but
had made some positive contributions to stability.  The missions in
the Golan Heights and between Iraq and Kuwait were successfully
carrying out their mandates and contributing to stability in their
areas of operation.  More importantly however, six of the missions
were not linked to settlement agreements, as called for by U.S. 
policy, and diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflicts had stalled
or were stalemated.  None had clear end points or exit strategies. 

Although these eight missions have become, in essence, open-ended
commitments, U.S.  officials support continuing all of them because
in their view the missions help stabilize and prevent the recurrence
of conflicts in areas vital to U.S.  interests.  We have recommended
that the United States take the lead in working with other members of
the Security Council to identify specific exit criteria and
strategies for these missions.  This should be done in a manner
consistent with PDD-25, balancing the need to bring closure to some
of these operations with other U.S.  interests such as stabilizing
conflicts that pose a threat to U.S.  foreign policy objectives. 


      U.S.  VOLUNTARY OR INDIRECT
      SUPPORT
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1.3

In addition to paying assessed contributions for U.N.  peacekeeping
operations--currently at a rate of 25 percent of the cost of the
operation--the United States often provides additional support to
U.N.-sanctioned missions for which it is not reimbursed.  In March
1996, we reported that for fiscal years 1992 through 1995, the United
States paid $1.3 billion in assessed contributions for the missions
in Haiti, the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, and Somalia.  But in
addition, the United States undertook actions in support of these
U.N.  operations that cost $5.3 billion.  This includes about $3.4
billion in incremental costs incurred by the Department of Defense
(DOD) and $1.9 billion incurred for humanitarian and other assistance
by other U.S.  agencies. 

For example, in Haiti, the United States spent an additional $953
million to remove the military dictatorship from Haiti, provide
training and equipment to countries to help prepare them for
participating in the subsequent U.N.  operation, and establish civic
order so the U.N.  mission could function.  Similarly, since the
humanitarian crisis was overwhelming peacekeeping efforts in Rwanda,
U.S.  agencies spent an additional $463 million to provide emergency
food, water, and sanitation for the war-affected population, as well
as send 2,000 troops to the region in support of humanitarian
actions.  And in the former Yugoslavia, DOD incurred about $784
million in incremental costs for humanitarian airdrops, airlift of
relief supplies into Sarajevo, and for enforcing the no-fly zone. 


      U.N.  PEACEKEEPING REFORM
      EFFORTS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:1.4

Finally, let me comment on management reforms the United Nations has
undertaken to improve the operational effectiveness and efficiency of
its peacekeeping missions.  In 1992 and 1993, we reported that the
United Nations was ill-equipped to plan, logistically support, or
deploy personnel to large, complex missions such as in Cambodia and
Somalia.  The Department of Peacekeeping Operations in New York had a
very small staff, planning was not integrated, the organizational
structure obstructed efficient operations, and field communications
with headquarters was difficult and sometimes impossible.  Since
then, the United Nations, with U.S.  and other member support, has
made progress in strengthening operations.  It has reorganized and
expanded the Department of Peacekeeping Operations; established a
24-hour situation center; revised its procurement, contracting, and
logistics procedures; and established a logistical support base in
Brindisi, Italy.  While we have not specifically evaluated the
effectiveness of these reforms, we have observed improvements in
planning and implementing peacekeeping efforts as we looked at the
missions in Haiti and Eastern Slavonia. 

While steps to improve management have been made, as one would
expect, peacekeeping operations are not without problems.  Reports by
the U.N.'s Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS)--created in
1994 at the urging of the United States as an important reform
measure--have continued to identify problems with U.N.  peacekeeping
operations.  For example, it recently reported that due to poor
planning, almost 900 generators costing $6 million were purchased for
operations in the former Yugoslavia but were unneeded and not used;
bids for supplying fresh food rations to another mission were
manipulated to favor one bidder; lack of internal controls caused
fraudulent claims to be paid on vehicle spare parts and repairs; and
staff members falsely claimed they were in Haiti and received related
benefits to which they were not entitled.  I should mention that, at
the request of Senators Helms and Grams, we are now reviewing how
well OIOS is functioning, including whether it is operationally
independent, has adequate staffing, and is otherwise equipped to
carry out its mandate. 


   LIMITS ON SUCCESS OF U.N. 
   PEACE OPERATIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:2

Over the past 50 years, the United Nations has led peacekeeping
missions with some degree of success; however, as we reported in
March 1997, it has not effectively led operations calling for the use
of force.\3 This includes both missions authorized to use force under
Chapter VII of the U.N.  Charter and those missions whose mandates
call for forceful action but do not explicitly authorize it.  In
part, it is the limits of the U.N.  organization that put at risk the
success of such operations.  These limits stem from the United
Nations being an organization based on a fundamental respect for the
sovereignty of its members.  Unlike sovereign nations, the United
Nations (1) cannot conscript troops and raise other resources that
may be necessary to effectively conduct operations requiring the use
of force; and (2) has no assurance that national contingents under
its command will carry out orders issued by a U.N.  commander.  The
United Nations also seeks the consent of warring parties to carry out
its mandate, even when force is authorized under Chapter VII of the
Charter.  These limitations have been overcome when a nation with
sufficient military prestige and credibility and the commitment of
resources has assumed leadership of the operation. 

Several examples help illustrate these points.  Of the 42 peace
operations led by the United Nations since 1945, the operations in
Bosnia (1992-95), Somalia (1992-95), and Eastern Slavonia (1996 and
ongoing) were explicitly authorized to use force under Chapter VII of
the U.N.  Charter.\4 Four other operations--Lebanon (1978 and
ongoing), the Congo (1960-64), Rwanda (1993-96), and the second phase
of the Haiti mission (1995-96)--were not so authorized but had
mandates calling for forceful action.  Of these operations, the ones
in which the United Nations had full leadership were hampered by the
limitations previously mentioned.  For example, despite Security
Council calls for action, the United Nations could not obtain
adequate troops, equipment, and reinforcements to effectively carry
out the operations in Rwanda, Bosnia, and Somalia.  For Bosnia,
34,000 additional troops were requested to deter attacks on "safe
areas," but only 7,600 were made available. 

Limits on U.N.  command and control hindered U.N.  commanders from
effectively deploying U.N.  peacekeepers to mission-critical
locations in Somalia, Bosnia, and the Congo.  National contingents
frequently sought instructions from their capitals before redeploying
troops, and in some cases they refused to redeploy.  Finally, the
U.N.'s will to use force in Somalia, Bosnia, and the Congo was
uncertain at key points and caused U.N.  forces to lose credibility
among the warring factions.  The U.N.  operations continued to rely
on the consent of the warring parties to conduct operations.  In
Bosnia, U.N.  officials were reluctant to use airpower to deter
attacks against safe areas, in part because of threats of
retaliation, but also because they feared such action would make it
appear that they were taking sides in an internal fight.  Moreover,
the U.N.  operation in Bosnia acceded to roadblocks, sought clearance
from the warring factions before moving its vehicles, and allowed the
warring factions to influence the deployment of troop contingents. 
These actions partly reflect the U.N.'s fundamental organizational
principle of ensuring that the sovereignty of its members is
respected at all times. 

In contrast, the operation in Eastern Slavonia and the second phase
of the Haiti mission have been operationally effective, partly
because of leadership by sovereign nations with credibility and
respect.  The United States provided leadership for the second phase
of the operation in Haiti and ensured that adequate troops and
resources were available to carry out assigned tasks, used its
command and control structure for the operation, and applied its
doctrine for operations other than war to help guide actions. 
Military leadership for the operation in Eastern Slavonia is provided
by a Belgian major general, who uses Belgian officers to provide
headquarters command and control.  This operation also has the
commitment of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to
provide close air support and other help. 

Partly in response to peacekeeping operations that were less than
fully successful, the executive branch developed PDD-25, its policy
on peace operations.  According to PDD-25, peacekeeping is a tool
intended to provide a finite window of opportunity for combatants to
resolve their differences through diplomatic means.  The policy also
lays out factors to be considered both in approving new missions and
voting to continue ongoing ones.  These factors include whether U.N. 
involvement advances U.S.  interests; whether there is a threat to
international peace and security; and whether the missions have clear
objectives, international support, realistic exit criteria, and end
points.  The application of this policy was cogently expressed in
1996 by the U.S.  Permanent Representative to the United Nations. 
She said that the international community simply cannot afford to
maintain operations where the disputants' commitment to overcoming
obstacles is in question, where there is no discernable progress
toward resolution, and where no end is in sight.  The policy also
directs executive branch officials to rigorously scrutinize all
missions and consider voting against the renewal of long-standing
ones not accomplishing their objectives. 


--------------------
\3 United Nations:  Limitations in Leading Missions Requiring Force
to Restore Peace (GAO/NSIAD-97-34, Mar.  27, 1997). 

\4 The U.N.  Iraq-Kuwait Observer Mission was authorized under
Chapter VII to redress small-scale violations of the demilitarized
zone, but is not used as an example here because of the limited scope
of the authority to use force. 


   STATUS OF LONG-STANDING
   PEACEKEEPING MISSIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:3

Currently there are eight long-standing peacekeeping missions that
range from 6 to nearly 50 years.  These are discussed in some detail
in our report being released today.\5 These long-standing missions
account for over 40 percent of the current U.N.  assessments for
peacekeeping and, as of March 1997, cumulatively cost over $6.1
billion.  Of these eight operations, two--the ones in the Golan
Heights and on the Iraq-Kuwait border--have generally carried out
their mandates and helped maintain stability in their areas of
operation.  Three other operations--the ones in Angola, Cyprus, and
the Truce Supervision Organization in the Middle East--have partially
fulfilled their mandates and made some positive contributions to
stability. 

The remaining three operations--Lebanon, Western Sahara, and on the
India-Pakistan border--have generally not carried out their mandates
and, according to U.N.  reports, have contributed only marginally to
establishing more secure and stable environments.  For example, while
the operation in Lebanon does provide humanitarian relief and some
security for the local population, the U.N.  Secretary General has
reported for the past several years that the operation's mandate
issued in 1978 remains unfulfilled.  One of the operation's mandate
objectives was to help restore Lebanese sovereignty and prevent its
area of operation from being used for hostile activity of any kind. 
However, the United Nations has taken the position that it has no
right to stop Lebanese forces, including Hizbollah, from resisting
Israel's occupation of southern Lebanon. 

Seven of the eight long-standing operations were originally deployed
to support diplomatic efforts to achieve lasting settlements of the
conflicts.  However, as of February 1997, talks associated with the
conflicts in Cyprus, Western Sahara, Syria, Lebanon, the Middle East,
and Kashmir had stalled or stalemated.  I should note that in Angola,
progress on the Lusaka agreement has stalled; whereas in the case of
India and Pakistan, there has been some preliminary movement on
arranging discussions.  U.N.  and U.S.  officials and area experts
attribute the inability to reach settlements after so many years to a
variety of factors including the deeply rooted nature of the
conflicts and the lack of commitment of the warring parties to
resolve differences peacefully.  They also point out that the
long-standing operations may be a part of the problem by promoting a
status quo that seems more preferable than making compromises to
achieve settlements. 

The eight long-standing operations have become costly and open-ended
commitments.  Although seven of these operations were undertaken to
create stable, secure environments to assist diplomatic efforts aimed
at settling these underlying conflicts, diplomatic efforts to resolve
the underlying conflicts had, in most cases, stalled.  Nevertheless,
U.S.  officials currently see no reasonable alternative to continuing
these operations because they help stabilize conflicts that could
threaten U.S.  security interests.  In their view, ending these
operations would risk renewed conflict and damage future peacemaking
efforts.  However, continued support of these operations does not
appear to give adequate consideration to other factors articulated by
U.S.  policy that seeks to ensure that peacekeeping operations are
limited in duration, linked to concrete political solutions, and have
exit criteria and identified end points for U.N.  involvement. 

In light of U.S.  interests in supporting well-defined peacekeeping
operations linked to concrete political solutions, our report
recommended that the United States take the lead in working with
other U.N.  Security Council members to identify specific exit
criteria and strategies for these operations.  We suggested that this
should be done in a manner consistent with PDD-25, balancing the need
to bring closure to these operations with other U.S.  interests such
as stabilizing conflicts that pose a threat to U.S.  foreign policy
objectives.  We noted that these strategies need not propose
immediate ends to these operations but, rather, may focus on how and
when the desired end states can be achieved, what intermediate and
final objectives are sought, and what specific role these operations
play in achieving the sought-after end states. 


--------------------
\5 U.N.  Peacekeeping:  Status of Long-standing Operations and U.S. 
Interests in Supporting Them (GAO/NSIAD-97-59, Apr.  9, 1997). 


   U.S.  SUPPORT OF U.N.  PEACE
   OPERATIONS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:4

The United States paid $1.95 billion for U.N.-assessed contributions
for U.N.  peacekeeping for fiscal years 1994 through 1996, but
according to the State Department's budget request, the United States
still owes about $658 million for peacekeeping arrears. 
Approximately $533 million of the U.S.  arrearage is owed for
assessments to the mission in the former Yugoslavia. 

In addition to paying for the assessments for U.N.  peacekeeping
missions, the United States often provides voluntary support for the
operations.  As noted in table 1, during fiscal years 1992 through
1995, the U.S.  costs for supporting U.N.-sanctioned peace operations
in Haiti, the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, and Somalia was about $6.6
billion.  This includes about $1.34 billion in assessments, and an
additional $5.26 billion for other support.  For example, in addition
to making payments of $786 million in assessments for the operation
in the former Yugoslavia for these years., DOD incurred incremental
costs of $784 million when it helped enforce the no-fly zone over
Bosnia with other NATO members, provided close air support for U.N. 
peacekeepers, launched air strikes against parties that attacked safe
areas, flew humanitarian airdrops with meals-ready-to-eat and other
necessities for besieged enclaves, and operated a hospital in Croatia
for U.N.  peacekeepers. 



                                Table 1
                
                 U.S. Costs in Support of Selected U.N.
                 Peace Operations, Fiscal Years 1992-95

                         (Dollars in millions)

                                             Fiscal years
                                --------------------------------------
                                                                 1992-
Country                           1992    1993    1994    1995      95
------------------------------  ------  ------  ------  ------  ------
Haiti Total                      $79.7                          $1,616
 (U.S. assessment)                 (0)  $130.4  $530.8  $875.8      .7
                                           (0)   (0.5)  (51.9)  (52.4)
Former Yugoslavia Total
 (U.S. assessment)               126.7   408.7   959.0   692.5  2,186.
                                (76.4)  (70.1)  (459.7  (179.8      9\
                                                     )       )  (786.0
                                                                     )
Rwanda Total                      22.1    24.8   261.4   265.4   573.7
 (U.S. assessment)                 (0)     (0)  (34.0)  (75.5)  (109.5
                                                                     )
Somalia Total                     92.9  1,124.   913.3    92.1  2,223.
 (U.S. assessment)                 (0)       8  (330.9  (16.9)       1
                                        (40.9)       )          (388.7
                                                                     )
======================================================================
Total                                   $1,688  $2,664  $1,925  $6,600
 (U.S. assessment)              $321.4      .7      .5      .8      .4
                                (76.4)   (111)  (825.1  (324.1  (1,336
                                                     )       )     .6)
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Note:  As of August 1995, the United Nations had reimbursed the
United States $79.4 million for its participation in these
operations. 

Other U.S.  agencies also provide voluntary support for peacekeeping
operations.  Like DOD's support, most of this assistance is not
contributed directly to the peace operations but helps create
environments in which operations can take place.  For example, in
fiscal years 1992 through 1995, the U.S.  Agency for International
Development spent over $480 million for activities in Haiti such as
training the Haitian police force in conducting criminal
investigations, funding the human rights monitoring mission, and
providing food and health services for the population.  In fiscal
years 1994 and 1995, the Departments of Justice, Commerce, the
Treasury, Transportation, and Health and Human Services provided over
$55 million for programs to help train Haitian judges, strengthen the
criminal justice system, and help with migration emergencies and
refugee processing.  In Somalia, the U.S.  Agency for International
Development spent $239 million from fiscal years 1992 through 1995
for activities including food distribution, water and sanitation,
mine clearing, and efforts to establish a police and judicial system. 


   U.N.  PEACEKEEPING MANAGEMENT
   REFORM EFFORTS
---------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5

Over the years, the United Nations has come under increasing
criticism for its inefficient management of peacekeeping missions. 
However, by the early 1990s when the United Nations was called upon
to undertake several large, complex missions such as Cambodia,
Somalia, and the former Yugoslavia almost simultaneously, the U.N.'s
management deficiencies were magnified.  In 1992 and 1993 we reported
that the United Nations was poorly equipped to efficiently and
effectively manage large complex missions.  For example, the
Department of Peacekeeping Operations lacked sufficient staff to plan
and implement missions and, moreover, had to rely on other
organizations within the United Nations to prepare budgets, procure
equipment and supplies, and provide logistical support.  For both the
Cambodia and Somalia missions, these weaknesses were reflected in (1)
the lack of detailed operational plans prior to deployment, (2)
fragmented military and civilian plans, (3) limited and erroneous
information, and (4) poor communications between headquarters and the
field. 

In response to such problems, the United Nations, with the help of
member states, has taken steps to improve its capacity to plan,
deploy, and support missions.  Key reform efforts have been to
restructure the U.N.  Department of Peacekeeping Operations, which is
responsible for the planning and day-to-day conduct of missions;
upgrade logistics support for missions; and improve procurement
practices.  We have not specifically evaluated the effectiveness of
these reforms but believe they are steps in the right direction.  One
indication of the reforms' impact is the Eastern Slavonia operation,
where the Security Council ensured that a NATO member provided the
military leadership and the mission's command and control and where
the deployment of 5,000 peacekeepers took place on schedule and
without direct assistance from the United States. 

Despite these positive signs, OIOS has reported some continuing
weaknesses in managing operations.  Three efforts--(1) the
restructuring and strengthening of the Department of Peacekeeping
Operations; (2) the creation of a logistics center at Brindisi,
Italy; and (3) steps to improve procurement practices--help
illustrate reform steps taken and the continuing weaknesses. 


      RESTRUCTURING THE DEPARTMENT
      OF PEACEKEEPING OPERATIONS
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5.1

The Department of Peacekeeping Operations was restructured over the
past few years to include the field administration and logistics
division.  Previously, the field logistics division was in a
different department, causing delays in mission planning and support
and disagreements on priorities.  Several units were also added to
the department to support peacekeeping actions to hold elections,
mount international civilian police actions, and effectively use
information in peacekeeping missions.  To ensure adequate staffing
for these functions, the department's personnel was increased from 60
in 1992 to an authorized staff of 398, with an additional 110
military officers on loan from member states to deal with logistics,
planning, and procurement.  A situation center was also completed and
tasked to maintain 24-hour communication with all ongoing missions
and provide periodic situation reports from the missions. 

In reviewing some of the recent field missions, OIOS noted that the
Department of Peacekeeping Operations still needs to improve the
efficiency and effectiveness of its operations.  For example, OIOS
reported that the department needs to provide appropriate guidance
and direction for operations at headquarters and in the field, and it
recommended that the department standardize procedures in the areas
of budgeting, finance, field administration, procurement, and
property management.  It also noted the need to institutionalize the
lessons learned from past missions in the form of policies,
guidelines, handbooks, and manuals.  OIOS said that it would be an
extraordinary waste of hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of
experience in tasks of continuing significance, such as the
demobilization of warring factions, if this experience was not
translated into practical guides for future missions. 


      ESTABLISHMENT OF A LOGISTICS
      CENTER
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5.2

To improve logistics, the United Nations established a center at
Brindisi, Italy, to receive, repair, and store surplus equipment from
closing missions and to maintain mission start-up kits.  The
logistics center was intended to safeguard and put to effective use
the millions of dollars' worth of vehicles, generators, computers,
and other assets from completed missions and to organize them into
off-the-shelf kits to support new missions.  According to the 1996
Annual Report to Congress on Peacekeeping, the center is cost free,
except for utilities and upkeep, and has demonstrated its value. 

However, an OIOS report raised questions about the cost-effectiveness
of the center becasue it was uncertain if its annual operating cost
was greater than the value of the equipment it was recovering.  For
example, the center recorded the value of its inventory at about $20
million.  However, this was the purchase price rather than the actual
value of the inventory.  According to OIOS, much of the equipment and
supplies in the inventory was in poor condition and should have been
written off.  It estimated that 50 percent of the generators were not
working and most of the trucks and light vehicles could be used only
for spare parts.  Some of this equipment--generators and food
rations, for instance--was shipped to missions where it was unusable
and had to be destroyed or shipped back at additional cost.  OIOS
reported that "in view of the annual costs of the Logistics Base of
more than $7 million, the actual value of the assets stored is a key
element in assessing the cost-effectiveness of the Base."


      PEACEKEEPING PROCUREMENT
      CONCERNS CONTINUE
-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5.3

Procurement weaknesses have been a major concern, and the United
Nations has taken several steps to improve its procurement practices. 
According to a recent executive branch report, the United Nations
reorganized its Purchase and Transportation Service from regional
desks to commodity desks to take advantage of economies of scale and
established professional training programs for procurement officers. 
To expedite procurement of commonly needed items at the lowest cost,
the United Nations negotiated 35 contingency contracts for items such
as vehicles, spare parts, generators, and rations.  Also, the
practice of reimbursing troop-contributing countries based on the
countries' own surveys was replaced with a more efficient
standardized cost schedule. 

Despite these steps, reports from OIOS indicated continuing
weaknesses involving procurement-related issues.  One key weakness
was a lack of internal controls in authorization and approval of
contracts that might have prevented the purchase of mobile cranes
that did not meet the users' needs in Bosnia; the purchase of
millions of dollars' worth of uniforms and protective gear, 50
percent of which were unused at the close of the mission; and a
contract for photocopier parts that exceeded the initial value of the
contract by 300 percent, partly because of overbilling.  OIOS also
found several instances in which conflicts of interest were created,
such as where the chairman of the contracts committee was also the
independent approving official for those contracts and where
departments requisitioning goods were also responsible for
contracting and purchasing them.  Similar problems occurred at other
missions. 


-------------------------------------------------------- Chapter 0:5.4

Mr.  Chairman and Members of the Committee, this concludes my
prepared remarks.  I will be happy to answer any questions you or
other Members of the Committee may have. 


RELATED GAO PRODUCTS
=========================================================== Appendix 1

U.N.  Peacekeeping:  Status of Long-standing Operations and U.S. 
Interests in Supporting Them (GAO/NSIAD-97-59, Apr.  9, 1997). 

United Nations:  Limitations in Leading Missions Requiring Force to
Restore Peace (GAO/NSIAD-97-34, Mar.  27, 1997). 

Bosnia:  Costs Are Uncertain but Likely to Exceed Estimates
(GAO/NSIAD-96-120BR, Mar.  14, 1996). 

Peace Operations:  U.S.  Costs in Support of Haiti, Former
Yugoslavia, Somalia, and Rwanda (GAO/NSIAD-96-38, Mar.  6, 1996). 

Peace Operations:  Effect of Training, Equipment, and Other Factors
on Unit Capability (GAO/NSIAD-96-14, Oct.  18, 1995). 

Peacekeeping:  Assessment of U.S.  Participation in the Multinational
Force and Observers (GAO/NSIAD-95-113, Aug.  15, 1995). 

Peace Operations:  Update on the Situation in the Former Yugoslavia
(GAO/NSIAD-95-148BR, May 8, 1995). 

Peace Operations:  Estimated Fiscal Year 1995 Costs to the United
States (GAO-NSIAD-95-138BR, May 3, 1995). 

Peace Operations:  Heavy Use of Key Capabilities May Affect Response
to Regional Conflicts (GAO-NSIAD-95-51, Mar.  8, 1995). 

Peace Operations:  Information on U.S.  and U.N.  Activities
(GAO/NSIAD-95-102BR, Feb.  13, 1995). 

United Nations:  How Assessed Contributions for Peacekeeping
Operations Are Calculated (GAO/NSIAD-94-206, Aug.  1, 1994). 

Humanitarian Intervention:  Effectiveness of U.N.  Operations in
Bosnia (GAO/NSIAD-94-156BR, Apr.  13, 1994). 

Peace Operations:  Withdrawal of U.S.  Troops from Somalia
(GAO/NSIAD-94-175, June 9, 1994). 

U.N.  Peacekeeping:  Lessons Learned in Recent Missions
(GAO/NSIAD-94-9, Dec.  29, 1993). 

Haiti:  Costs of U.S.  Programs and Activities Since the 1991
Military Coup (GAO/NSIAD-93-252FS, Aug.  5, 1993). 

U.N.  Peacekeeping:  Observations on Mandates and Operational
Capability (GAO/T-NSIAD-93-15, June 9, 1993). 

Serbia-Montenegro:  Implementation of U.N.  Economic Sanctions
(GAO/NSIAD-93-174, Apr.  22, 1993). 

United Nations:  U.S.  Participation in Peacekeeping Operations
(GAO/NSIAD-92-247, Sept.  9, 1992). 


*** End of document. ***




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