2024: What’s the Worst That Could Happen?

Every January, CFR’s annual Preventive Priorities Survey analyzes the conflicts most likely to occur in the year ahead and measures their potential impact. For the first time, the survey anticipates that this year, 2024, the United States will contend not only with a slew of global threats, but also a high risk of upheaval within its own borders. Is the country prepared for the eruption of election-related instability at home while wars continue to rage abroad?

Play Button Pause Button
0:00 0:00
x
Host
  • Gabrielle Sierra
    Director, Podcasting
Credits

Asher Ross - Supervising Producer

Markus Zakaria - Audio Producer and Sound Designer

Molly McAnany - Associate Podcast Producer

Episode Guests
  • Paul B. Stares
    General John W. Vessey Senior Fellow for Conflict Prevention and Director of the Center for Preventive Action

Show Notes

For the first time in its sixteen-year history, CFR’s annual Preventive Priorities Survey found that the leading concern among foreign policy experts lies within U.S. borders: the possibility of domestic terrorism and political violence in the wake of the 2024 U.S. presidential election. 

 

Among the thirty other threats deemed plausible by experts were a wider regional conflict in the Middle East borne out of the war in the Gaza Strip and a mass migration crisis on the southwest U.S. border. An escalation in the war between Russia and Ukraine, a military conflict between China and Taiwan, and a highly disruptive cyberattack on U.S. critical infrastructure all present serious economic and national security risks as well.

 

 

 

Whether or not these threats come to a head in 2024 depends on how global leaders navigate growing tensions both at home and abroad.

 

Read the full 2024 Preventive Priorities Survey

 

Check out the Center for Preventive Action’s Global Conflict Tracker.

 

 

From CFR

 

Will Freeman, ”Tough New Immigration Rules Risk Empowering the Cartels,” TIME

 

Will Merrow and Kali Robinson, “Iran’s Regional Armed Network

 

David Sacks, “Why Is Taiwan Important to the United States?

 

Jacob Ware, “The Southern Border Poses Terrorism Risks. Homegrown Threats Still Loom Larger

 

From Our Guest

 

Averting Major Power War: The Logic of Mutual Assured Survival

 

In This Turbulent Year, Peace Has to Start at Home for the United States,” The Hill

 

Read More

 

Bruce Hoffman and Jacob Ware, “God, Guns, and Sedition: Far-Right Terrorism in America

 

Ten Conflicts to Watch in 2024,” International Crisis Group

 

Watch and Listen

 

What to Worry About in 2024,” CFR.org 


Israel-Hamas War: Regional Ripple Effects,” CFR.org

West Africa

West Africa is losing many of its best and brightest. Across the region, doctors, lawyers, and engineers are leaving, depriving some of the world’s youngest countries of the minds they need to develop sustainably. At the same time, coups have rocked the nearby Sahel, threatening to create a corrosive cycle of instability. Can West Africa quell the tide of emigration?

Maternal and Child Health

In the past thirty years, sixty countries have expanded access to abortion care as an underpinning of maternal health. The 2022 U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade made the United States the fourth country ever to decrease access to abortion—and the world took notice. Some countries have since reinforced protections for abortion care, while others have moved to further restrict it.

India

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the most popular man in India. On track to be elected for a third term, he has boosted the country’s global standing and propelled strong economic growth while consolidating power and galvanizing majoritarian support for his Hindu nationalist agenda—all while growing closer to the United States. How could Hindu nationalism reshape India?

Top Stories on CFR

West Africa

The split between ECOWAS and the mutinous AES states may be just what the regional body needed. 

Election 2024

Each Friday, I look at what the presidential contenders are saying about foreign policy. This Week: Republicans are gathering in Milwaukee next week optimistic about their chances in November.  

United Kingdom

CFR experts discuss the results of presidential elections in France and the United Kingdom, as well as what to expect from the 2024 NATO Summit in Washington, DC.