Issue

Fragile States

The balance of power between strong states was for decades the dominant issue in discussions of international security. But today, it is fragile states that are seen by many as posing potentially greater threats. Weak infrastructures, internal conflict, and lack of economic development provide fertile ground for trafficking, piracy, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, disease pandemics, regional tensions, and even genocide.

As a result, there is a growing movement in the international community to find comprehensive ways to promote stronger states, as well as more effective solutions to deal with those that are already on the brink of failure.

In Fragile States, you'll find reporting from around the world—from East Timor to Haiti, from Guinea Bissau to Afghanistan. The reporting demonstrates the dangers weak states pose—and also the international interventions that appear to be making a difference.

Fragile States was produced by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting in partnership with The Bureau for International Reporting. Support provided by the Stanley Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York.

Fragile States

Afghanistan: Failure of Expectation

The Taliban is not the only threat facing Afghanistan. The rise in poppy cultivation places the country at risk of moving from narco-economy to narco-state, and as eradication efforts continue to prove wildly unsuccessful, the threat increases. Yet the reasons for poppy's growing influence in the country are not...

Iraq: Death of a Nation? (revisited)

"Iraq: Death of a Nation" examines how the U.S. invasion and occupation created a multi-faceted civil war in which the U.S. is now actively arming multiple factions. Last summer, the project focused on how Iraq's refugee crisis was created by the invasion and the fighting that has followed. This...

Congo's Conflict: Profit and Loss

Conflicts in the Democratic Republic of Congo have resulted in millions of Congolese lives lost, while benefiting the trade of small arms and valuable minerals like coltan.

Another Darfur

As the world watches Darfur to the West, government harassments in East Sudan have forced hundreds of thousands from their homes. Like their counterparts in Darfur, eastern rebels complain that successive governments in Khartoum have left their region under-developed, whilst exploiting its natural resources.

East Sudan is...

Our Choice Too: On the Edge in Darfur

Jon Sawyer, Pulitzer Center executive director, traveled to Sudan in early 2006 to investigate the effectiveness of the African Union's peacekeeping mission in Darfur.

Elections Do Not Mean Democracy

Elections are not a bad thing. But for the sake of our own commitment to honesty, let us not deceive ourselves into believing that Jordan is democratizing.

Pulitzer Center Visits West Coast

Pulitzer Center journalists Misha Friedman, Jon Cohen and Amy Maxmen spoke to 425 people about their work featured in the e-book "To End AIDS" at different events in the San Francisco area last week.

This Week: Bringing Home Hope from Cuba

This week: lung cancer patients travel to Cuba for a promising vaccine, South Africa is challenges the stigma attached to HIV/AIDS, climate change in Greenland is causing drought for farmers.