Once again the Fund for Peace has reviewed the criteria for ranking nation-states along the Fragile States Index. This was formerly known as the Failed States Index (FSI) but was changed this year to reflect what Foreign Policy called, “An acknowledgment that all states, to different degrees, face conditions that threaten the livelihoods of their citizens.” The results found that the United States had fallen in rank and did so by a degree which made them one of the top 10 worsened nation states.
Several events were taken into consideration such as the NSA documents leaked by Edward Snowden, the 2013 bombings at the Boston Marathon, and the government shut down. This downgrade of the United States rank on the FSI demonstrated the worst rank the U.S. has ever achieved in the 9 years since being included in the measurement.
Nation-States who saw improvements in their score included Iran, who finished a top the 10 most improved followed by Serbia, Zimbabwe, Cube, Mexico, and others. There were also the big winners and losers. Finland was named the most stable nation state followed by Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, New Zealand, Luxembourg, Iceland, Ireland, and Austria.
Conversely, the most fragile states started with the least stable nation state of South Sudan (a relatively new country established in 2011 as the Republic of South Sudan). Somalia, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sudan, Chad, Afghanistan, Yemen, Haiti, and Pakistan rounded out the bottom ten. The continent of Africa remains King in the land of instability.
This downgrading should be taken serious but just as the U.S. credit downgrade from AAA to AA in 2011 was shrugged off, so might this reduction in stability. Under President Obama’s administration the United States has seen more negative downgrades and reductions than at any other time in modern history. As the nation’s economy takes hit after hit, the administration continues as if nothing has happened. The only areas where the administration seems to have made major gains include in the deficit, the number of Americans out of work, the number of welfare recipients, and the number of illegal immigrants coming to America.
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