SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Plesch, Dan and Weiss, Thomas G. (2015) '1945’s Forgotten Insight: Multilateralism as Realist Necessity.' International Studies Perspectives, 17 (1). pp. 4-16.

Text - Accepted Version
Download (588kB) | Preview


The 70th anniversary of the signing and entry into force of the UN Charter provided an occasion to explore the historical underpinnings of contemporary global governance. This article redresses the neglect of the United Nations as a multilateral structure before the conference that drafted the Charter in 1945. It rehabilitates an underappreciated aspect of the period that began on January 1, 1942, with the “Declaration by United Nations,” namely, the combination of multilateral strategies for military and human security to achieve victory in war and peace. The wide substantive and geographic resonance suggests the extent to which the pressures of the second war to end all wars helped states to overcome their disinclination to collaborate. Today’s fashionable calls for “good enough” global governance abandon the strategy of constructing robust intergovernmental organizations; they are not good enough, especially, because our forebears did much better. Many insights and operational approaches from 1942 to 1945 remain valid for addressing twenty-first-century global challenges.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: First published online: 4 November 2015
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Interdisciplinary Studies > Centre for International Studies & Diplomacy
ISSN: 15283585
Copyright Statement: This is an accepted version of the below article published online on 4 November 2015 by Oxford University Press in International Studies Perspectives at the DOI above.
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2015 09:58

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item