Today is International Day for Peacekeepers, an annual UN affair in which we honor blue helmets around the world and remember their sacrifices. I thought might be a good moment to trot out some facts and figures about UN Peacekeeping that the average reader may find…surprising, interesting, or make for good trivia.
1) About how many peacekeepers are deployed to 18 hotspots around the world?
A) 50,000 B) 100,000 C) 200,000 D) 1.1 million
2) Which is the top troop contributing country to UN peacekeeping?
A) Canada B) Norway C) Ethiopia D) Bangladesh
3) How many Americans are serving in UN peacekeeping missions, as of April?
A) 0 B) 3 C) 129 D) 1,012
4) There are 17 Peacekeeping missions around the world. About how much do these missions cost member states per year?
A) $800 million. B) $8 billion C) $10 billion D) $150 billion
5) There have been 67 peacekeeping missions since 1948. What is the oldest current standing peackeeping mission?
A) United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) B) United Nations Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) C) United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) D) United Nations Mission for the Referendum in Western Sahara (MINURSO)
Answers as of April (which discounts the new Syria mission.)
1) B. There are about 99,000 blue helmets in 17 peacekeeping missions plus the UN mission in Afghanistan, which is not technically a peacekeeping mission, but is administered by the UN’s Department of Peacekeeping Operations. 2) Bangladesh, at 9,949 troops, followed closely behind by Pakistan and India. 3) 129 Americans were serving in UN peacekeeping missions as of April. 4) $8 billion. For comparisons sake, that is about what the USA spends in two months in Afghanistan. 5) UNTSO was created in 1948 to monitor the truce between Israel and Palestinians. It’s still in operation, particular in the Golan Heights.