The 20th century witnessed not only world wars and the rise and collapse of empires and ideologies, but also a quantumincrease in the complexity of world affairs. This resulted in the corresponding reduction of the predictability and an increased risk of strategic surprise. The 20thcentury was the most violent in history because of ideas that challenged the fundamental principles of Western civilization. Wars between nations have resulted inthe deaths of millions of people, but it is the murders supported by the States that gave it a special reputation. Some 135 million people were killed by their owngovernments, and some ideas and not the claims were behind the violence.
Despite the tragedies of Rwanda, Srebrenica and Darfur, organized mass killings did notcontinue on a scale in any way comparable to the one it had already reached. But the idea of improving the fate of humanity by using the instruments of the statecontinues to prosper despite its reprehensible records. Marxism-Leninism and fascism are still dangerous, forgiven for their "excess" and managing dozens of statesaround the world. Meanwhile, the ideology took a new violent shape in the radical Islamist, the outgrowth of a corrupted version of one of the major world religions whoseadherents aspire to establish a new world community opposed to the democratic notions of human rights and the government of the people, by the people and for thepeople. Fringe elements are delivering a "jihad" that caused devastation in Muslims and non-Muslims states and that is likely to remain a challenge for years to come.