The geopolitics of Brazilian peacekeeping and the United Nations’ turn towards stabilisation in Haiti

Markus-Michael Müller*, Andrea Steinke

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review


In analysing Brazil’s contribution to the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), this article assesses the United Nations’ turn towards stabilisation and the role of Latin American actors in this process. This development, we argue, allows the material contributions of Northern intervenors to be downscaled, but at the same time opens up opportunities for the larger contributing states from the Global South. Accordingly, this enables increasingly assertive actors like Brazil, to use UN peacekeeping missions as an opportunity for pursuing their own geopolitical ambitions. In drawing upon the results of empirical fieldwork in Haiti, we point towards the ways in which the UN’s turn towards stabilisation created multiple geopolitical opportunities for Brazil that ultimately converged with the geopolitical interests of Northern actors. On top of this process, this refers in particular to the US and its search for new ways of making peacekeeping-cum-stabilisation more ‘local’, less costly, and more legitimate. This geopolitical convergence of interests, we demonstrate, transformed Haiti into a laboratory for a variety of actors from the US and Brazil that were interested in experimenting with new forms of militarised interventions.
Original languageEnglish
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)54-77
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

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