A recent analysis shows we're on the cusp of a flurry of civil unrest and revolution not seen in 300 years.
We've already watched Egypt, Syria, Libya and now the Ukraine fall into unrest. And there continues to be tension in Pakistan and North Korea.
Former U.S. Ambassador Ryan Crocker attributes much of it to the ongoing fallout of the Cold War.
“We are going to be in for a prolonged period of conflict within states, probably more conflict between states, as they sort out who and what they want to be,” Crocker tells KTRH News.
While all this appears very distant to us, Joan Neuhaus Schaan at Rice University's Baker Institute insists the threat is very real.
“The close association of Iran to Venezuela is of great concern, and should be to those of us along the gulf coast, which could be well within range of nuclear missiles,” she says.
Neuhaus Schaan at Rice's Baker Institute says that opened the door for terror groups to take root.
“Lurking in the wings are organizations that have been looking for an opening to topple whatever a regime might be, and to put themselves into power,” she says.
Crocker says that's what makes Al Qaeda, Hezbollah and others so tough to deal with politically.
“Non-state actors don't sign the Geneva Convention, they don't sign the Chemical Weapons Convention,” says Crocker. “They stay outside the state system and are highly, highly dangerous.”