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The Emergence of Failing States

Somalia, Syria, Pakistan, Iraq, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Nigeria and Egypt - at least one has failed, three are failing and the others have a conflict foot print that could lead to failure. Failed states will create multiple factions warring or colluding within a nation state to rule diverse regions and sects either with or without the endorsement of a remnant central government. Authoritarianism, corruption, conflict, the inability to solve internal differences and the handicap and the failure of the international club to safeguard peace and human rights and to render justice to victims, are all contributing factors to failed states.

Learned veteran Algerian diplomat, Lakhdar Brahimi, the United Nations(UN) envoy to Syria who stepped down last week, has sounded the alarm on the emergence of failed states. Earlier this year when Mr. Brahimi failed to get Syrian parties to agree to a path to peace; the diplomat appeared sincerely and emotionally crushed by the indifference and pettiness of parties to agree to a route for peace to the Syrian people. He apologized to the Syrian people for the failure of the international club to broker their peace. As reported by the BBC, Mr. Brahimi, in an interview with the German newspaper Der Spiegel, said Syria could become a "failed state" similar to Somalia. He also warned that the Syrian conflict would "blow up" and spread beyond Syria's borders. "It will become another Somalia...It will not be divided, as many have predicted. It's going to be a failed state, with warlords all over the place," he predicted. 

The veteran diplomat criticized Iran and Russia for supporting the Syrian government and he believes the Syrian president is "100 percent aware" of the way the war is being conducted. China should also be added to that group for criticism for joining with Russia to block resolutions aimed at punishing Bashar al Assad. Mr. Brahimi said both sides in Syria have committed war crimes and that "people will be held responsible one day." Years ago, Mr. Brahimi raised the alarm on Afghanistan, but few heeded his words until the Afghan affair had fully come to light. 

The resurgence of radical and brazen violence in Pakistan this past week reiterates the instability of that country and its vulnerability to Taliban insurgency. From Mosul in Iraq and beyond, radical Islam is destabilizing that fragile nation with seemingly perpetual death from daily insurgencies. Corruption in Nigeria has attributed to the radicalization and the development of Boko Haram. Authoritarianism has given rise to Ukraine's current affairs and should conditions continue there as they have, splinter groups will continue to molest eastern Ukraine. What will Afghanistan look like after 2015?