This article is published as part of the Small Wars Journal and Divergent Options Writing Contest which ran from March 1, 2019 to May 31, 2019. It considers from the perspective of the United States government what options are on the table in the use private military forces.
This essay therefore holds the assumption that engaging in UN-led enforcement operations is to the geopolitical benefit of the United States and endeavors to answer the following question: If the United States chooses to contribute to UN peace enforcement operations, to what extent should this effort be privatized? To answer this question, this essay defines UN peace enforcement and examines the present and potential role of private military and security companies (PMSCs), as well as the role of PMSCs in the US's current enforcement model. The advantages and disadvantages of using PMSCs are then addressed, followed by a recommendation that the United States seek to privatize its UN peace enforcement contributions by engaging PMSCs.
About the Author(s)
Private military companies can provide comparatively cheap and rapid solutions in warzones, while side-stepping messy political and international ties.