Breeding Ground for Non State Actors

This piece by Donald Steinberg highlights the reasons why failed states are prime breeding grounds for non state actors – Fourth Generation warriors or Global Guerrilas.

There are at least 1 million internally displaced persons in Sudan, Colombia, Congo, Uganda, Iraq, Algeria, and Turkey, and the numbers are growing every day. Because internally displaced persons – IDPs in humanitarian lingo – don’t cross international borders, they don’t automatically receive the rights, protection, and assistance that come to refugees. They have no patron among international agencies or donors, and no formal system of legal rights.

These people are the embodiment of the disconnectedness Barnett talks about.

Who are the internally displaced? They are 6 million Sudanese driven from their homes in the south and in Darfur by brutal civil war. They are 3 million Colombians who have suffered from a half-century of civil strife. They are women and children of northern Uganda, crowded into squalid and ill- protected camps to prevent murder, kidnapping, and forced recruitment by the Lord’s Resistance Army. They are Congolese civilians caught in the crossfire of ethnic militias, foreign troops, and insurgency groups. Most recently, they are hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans driven from their shacks outside Harare by Robert Mugabe’s latest atrocity.

Sounds like a map of the Gap to me.

Beyond the moral and humanitarian imperatives, mass internal displacement brings chaos that may serve as breeding grounds for terrorism; trafficking in drugs, arms, and persons; pandemic diseases; and other threats to international order. The failure to rapidly return IDPs to their homes can doom peace agreements and reconstruction.

Absolutely. I fear that returning to them to their homes will not be good enough however. Governments in the area are still too weak; social mobility will still be around 0. They will have to join the organizations providing support and sustanance (drug, smuggling, terror networks) and dismantle false units we call nation states that have done little or none for them. Or move to the Core.

Sign up for my newsletter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *