The key to untangling this mess and creating a series of tactical and strategic responses is to understand one basic truth: There are spirals of violence here that come from below, from the street, and spirals that come from above, from the state. Responses by citizens must undercut the violent spiral and address separately the state and the street.
Economic success does not assure peace, but economic failure and disintegration almost assures conflict. It is incumbent on the leaders of the major nations of the world to figure out how to achieve more rapid and sustained economic growth. A commitment to maintain strength, to uphold the international order, is an inherent and deeply-seated part of any successful global system. Great powers can never bluff. When they bluff, when their intentions are uncertain, they are tested. When they are tested, questions arise, and the prospect of conflict mounts.