Issue

Governance

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 Governance, 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.

 

Governance

The Karachi Circular Railway

Ivan Sigal’s multi-channel installation KCR explores the Karachi Circular Railway, a now-defunct commuter train that once connected the disparate neighborhoods of Pakistan’s largest metropolis.

Somaliland: A Land in Limbo

Somaliland, a breakaway region of Somalia, is Africa’s only fully unrecognized country. After breaking away from Somalia and claiming independence in 1991, the Somaliland government, in stark contrast to the failed state of Somalia, has constructed many facets of a functioning, stable state. Somaliland has carried out several Presidential elections and peaceful transfers of power.

Guinea-Bissau: West Africa's New Achilles' Heel

An international network led by Latin American drug cartels and the Lebanese Islamist group Hezbollah has chosen West Africa, among the poorest and more corrupted corners of the world, as the nexus for illegal trade in cocaine, oil, counterfeit medicines, pirated music and human trafficking. International law enforcement officials...

Human Terrain: The New Counterinsurgency?

Since 2007, an experimental Pentagon program has been sending teams of civilian anthropologists and other social scientists into the hardest-fought regions of Iraq and Afghanistan to pursue a mission that's both deeply controversial and increasingly important to U.S. military strategy.

Social scientists work within frontline combat units...

The Roots of Ethnic Conflict in Eastern DRC

The 2006 election in the Democratic Republic of Congo was supposed to usher in a new period of peace and stability for the beleaguered, exhausted Congolese people. Instead, it made one of the country's most intractable problems worse. After the election, the small but powerful Tutsi community in Eastern Congo...

Yemen: In a Fragile State

The poorest nation in the Arab world struggles with high population growth, 40% unemployment and a persistent flow of refugees from Somalia. In the next decade, its 22 million citizens will compete for increasingly scarce water supplies, as aquifers are drilled, pumped and drained unsustainably.

This is...

Sudan: The Forgotten North

Northern Sudan is a region that has largely been ignored, eclipsed by rebellion in Darfur and a civil war in the south that lasted two decades. But in villages along the Nile in the Nubian desert, far from the conflicts in other parts of the country, Sudanese people are...

This Week: Is It Too Late for Hong Kong?

This week: China loses patience with sacrificing control, Chinese migrants in Singapore, and child soldiers in South Sudan; what will happen with recent Trump administration aid cuts.