By Charles Jones
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Additional resources for International Relations: A Beginner's Guide
Nearly all the world’s states – now approaching two hundred – belong to the United Nations Organization (UNO). Formed in 1945 as successor to the League of Nations, the UNO, more often referred to simply as the United Nations (UN), was created to maintain global peace and security. At the start there were fifty-one members, almost half of them American. As European empires were dissolved, fatally weakened by the Second World War, numerous new states were formed, chiefly in Asia and Africa. They duly joined the UN.
Global trade and foreign direct investment have risen significantly and the reliance of major corporations on a ‘home’ country has diminished. These trans-border flows have been joined by migration at levels approaching those of the nineteenth century. Migration Though current migration figures look high, contemporary movement of peoples appears insignificant in proportion to total global population, hardly matching the wholesale movements of Germanic tribes into Europe in the twilight of the Western Roman Empire or the massive migrations from Europe into temperate America and Australasia from the mid-nineteenth century.
The organization Plan estimates that it reaches 27 million children and their families in more than sixty thousand locations. Not all NGOs are concerned with development. The environmental charity Greenpeace, founded in 1971 to protest against US nuclear testing in the Pacific, is more concerned with lobbying and direct action. Sea Shepherd, inclining even more towards direct action, operates anti-whaling vessels equipped with helicopters and drones to locate whaling fleets, which are then confronted.