assistance to fragile states


Senior Member
Does "assistance to fragile states" mean "assistance to fragile states (of United States)"?

Thanks in advance

Lax U.S. Gun Controls Pose a Greater Threat Than Terrorism
U.S.-made guns wreak havoc around the world as well as in the U.S.

<....> Small arms fuel civil wars, organized criminal violence, and terrorist activities. They also undermine multimillion dollar development programs and other assistance to fragile states.”

-Scientific American

  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    It seems obvious to me that it's a reference to nation-states and not to the states of the United States, which can scarcely be called "fragile."

    WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
    na•tion-state (nāshən stāt′), n.
    1. Government - a sovereign state inhabited by a relatively homogeneous group of people who share a feeling of common nationality.
    Also from our dictionary for State
    a politically unified people occupying a definite territory;
    nation:[countable; sometimes: State]the State of Israel.​
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