chapter  10
The United Nations and the concept of collective security
Pages 3

The history of the United Nations is the history of a search for a global, all-embracing system of collective security. The aim was to prevent wars and if they happened to bring fighting to a swift end by finding a compromise solution. The first Anglo-American discussions resulted in the Atlantic Charter in August 1941. This led to a ‘Declaration by the United Nations’ on 1 January 1942 which stated the determination of the Allies to continue the war against the Axis forces until they were defeated. In 1943 an understanding was reached with Stalin that an international organisation to ensure international peace and security would be established. It would be based on the equality of all peace-loving states. Cordell Hull, the US Secretary of State, in 1943, expressed high hopes for the new organisation. He believed that there would be no need in the future for zones of influence, for alliances, for a balance of power or any other mechanism which had been deployed in the past by states to enhance their security or interests. He was echoing the sentiments of President Roosevelt.