'Fighting for peace': The psychological effect of peace operations on South African peacekeepers (part III)
This article focuses on the psychological dimensions of deployment in peace operations. The first section examines whether South African military personnel find their deployments in these missions satisfying. The concomitant aim is to determine what motivated military personnel to serve in these missions where they were required to help, protect and save mostly civilians in countries to which they owe little allegiance. The focus then shifts to how peacekeepers cope with the stress associated with these missions, not only in terms of operations but also lengthy separations from family, friends and loved ones. The final section addresses issues of adaptation and reintegration upon their return. The findings of this part of the study indicate that peacekeepers serve in peace operations for a number of reasons. Most find the missions satisfying, but there are many stressors that affect their wellbeing and willingness to redeploy. © 2012 Institute for Security Studies.