Of all the international institutions created in the aftermath of World War II (WWII), none matches the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) in power and global influence. It is regarded by many as the “most powerful international institution in the history of the nation-state system.”
Having experienced the devastating effects of two world wars, the international community focused its efforts on the containment of inter-state conflicts, and the UNSC was charged to ensure global peace and security. To that end, it has the power to make decisions that other countries are obligated to accept and implement.
A seat at the horseshoe table at the UNSC’s chamber in New York City came to be seen as a marker of a country’s global stature and significance. The chamber is adorned by a giant oil canvas mural, which depicts a phoenix rising from the ashes of WWII. Surrounding the image of the phoenix are scenes of hope for a new world being rebuilt after the war which is bereft of conflict and human suffering.