The end of the Cold War has brought about a major change in the paradigm of UN peace support action. The organization has found itself unable successfully to sustain the increasing demands placed upon it and has sought other mechanisms through which peace support might be achieved. Prominent among these has been exploration of the extent to which regional organizations and defensive alliances might assume this role as, in some sense, 'delegates' of the UN. The great diversity in both the nature and capacities of such organizations suggests, however, that this cannot be a simple or singular solution to the problem of peace support into the next century. Rather than a single unitary new paradigm, the pattern which is suggested is both more complex and more diverse, with a combination of regional organizations and 'coalitions of the willing' having to function in a system which yet combines the essential imperatives of ultimate UN oversight and practical efficacy.