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State Failure and State Weakness in a Time of Terror


Since September 11, the threat of terror gives the failed state problem an immediacy and an importance that transcends its previous humanitarian dimension. In the past, failure had fewer implications for peace and security. Now failed states pose dangers to themselves, theirneighbors, and to people around the globe. Preventing nation states from failing, and reviving those that do fail, has become a strategic, as well as moral, imperative.The introduction to this innovative book develops a theory of state failure and suggests how it may guarded against. The subsequent chapters illustrate the state failure paradigm by examining cases of state collapse (Somalia), state failure (Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, and the Sudan), and states at risk for failure (Colombia, Fiji, Haiti, Indonesia, Lebanon, Sri Lanka, and Tajikistan). The last chapters ask when and how weak states succumb to failure, and how that fatal slide can be arrested.Contributors (all of whom have participated in a large Harvard University project on state failure): Oren Barak, Walter Clarke, Nasrin Dadmehr, Marlye Gelin-Adams, Rachel Gisselquist, Robert Gosende, Erin Jennie, Harvey Kline, Stephanie Lawson, Rene Lemarchand, Michael Malley, David Malone, Gerard Prunier, Will Reno, and Robert I. Rotberg.

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