Does humanitarian intervention 'work'? Could it work better if approached differently? Or should we just, in the words of one critic, 'give war a chance'? Since the end of the Cold War and the subsequent surge in civil and international conflicts, the UN has been faced by an ever-increasing set of demands on its military capacity. This book traces the evolution of its armed humanitarian intervention from the grand ambitions for forceful collective security through the 'brushfire' peacekeeping of the cold war years to its engagement with the present's fractured globalisation. Norrie MacQueen looks at the theory behind humanitarian interventin, and compiles a balance sheet of the UN's success and failure in practice, confronting hard questions about their short and long-term value.