The huge number of security forces stationed around the world as United Nations peace- keepers is second only to the global military deployments of the USA. But most UN peace- keepers come from the emerging powers and developing states that comprise the global South. This is the first book to analyse this phenomenon at the international level. Such unprecedented deployments show that peacekeeping is the most widely tolerated use of force in international affairs today. Far from signalling progress towards global governance, Legions of Peace argues that UN peacekeeping must be understood in the context of continuing economic inequality and the uneven distribution of global power. Philip Cunliffe contends that through UN peace- keeping Western states have used their domination of international institutions to harness the armed forces of the global South. In so doing, Western states seek to reduce the political and military costs of hegemony and stave off their inevitable, long-term decline in power. This strategy has profound political implications. Instead of transcending the 'scourge of war', by globalising peacekeeping the UN has made peace dependent on the extensive and sustained deployment of armed force - a development that bodes ill for the future.