United Nations Medal
Service: All Services
Criteria: Six months service with any U.N. peacekeeping mission.
Devices: Bronze Star
Notes: Above date denotes when award was authorized for wear by U.S. Armed Forces personnel.
For six months service on behalf of the United Nations in one of eleven missions (next page).
The United Nations Medal is designated as a foreign service award. It was authorized by the United Nations General Assembly on July 30, 1959 and approved for wear on the U.S. military uniform by Executive Order on March 11, 1964. The medal is awarded to any member of the United States Armed Forces for not less than six months service in support of a United Nations mission.
The United Nations Medal was designed by the United Nations. The medal is a bronze disc with the United Nations emblem (a polar projection of the world taken from the North Pole, encircled by two olive branches). Centered above this are the bold letters, “UN.” The reverse of the medal contains the raised inscription, “IN THE SERVICE OF PEACE” on two lines. The medallion for all UN operations is the same for all authorized operations. The only ribbon originally authorized for wear on the U.S. uniform is United Nations blue with narrow stripes of white near the edges. In recent years, however, U.S. policy was changed to permit the unique ribbon authorized for each United Nations operation to be worn. Individuals who have participated in more than one UN operation wear only the first ribbon/medal for which they qualify with a three-sixteenth inch bronze star for each subsequent award. For further information on United Nations medals, see: United Nations Medals and Missions by Lawrence H. Borts, Medals of America Press, 1998
This medal was not authorized for UN service during the Korean War. The correct UN medal is the United Nations Korea Service Medal