Agents of STRIKE
World Security Council
Contrary to popular belief, the World Security Council is not actually the same as the United Nations Security Council. The two entities are distinct, and SHIELD doesn’t report to the United Nations (SHIELD is NATO-derived, historically).
SHIELD’s World Security Council is technically composed of 30 members (the 28 countries that compose NATO, plus Russia and China). However, all 30 members do not sit on the Council at the same time. Much like the UN Security Council, there is a small number of members at any given time who actually are actively on the Council, with six permanent members (The US, the UK, France, Germany, Russia, and China). The rest rotate on a regular basis.
The World Security Council was created in the 1990s in response to the outing of SHIELD to the general populace as part of the Operation Gladio controversy. Prior to this, the Executive Director of SHIELD answered only to the Supreme Commander of SHAPE (as SHIELD was, up until that point, considered a division of SHAPE), giving SHIELD very little oversight.
Now, the Executive Director has to submit regular reports on SHIELD’s activities to the World Security Council, and can be over-ruled on his decisions. This makes SHIELD operations extremely difficult at times, especially as it pertains to Leviathan, which Russia vehemently denies the existence of and refuses to accept any connection between Leviathan and the FSB.