Conventional wisdom among policymakers in both the US and Europe holds that weak and failing states are the source of the world's most pressing security threats today. This is not surprising. The most destructive attack on the US in its history originated in one of the world's poorest countries. Deadly communicable diseases seem to constantly emerge from the world's poorest regions, and transnational crime appears to flourish in weakly governed states. However, as Stewart Patrick shows, our assumptions about the threats posed by failed and failing states are based on anecdotal arguments, not on a systematic empirical analysis that traces the connections between state failure and transnational security threats. Weak Links is the first book to do this, and is sweeping in scope. Covering terrorism, transnational crime, WMDs, pandemic diseases, and energy insecurity, its basic conclusions will surprise many. While some global threats do emerge in failed states, more often than not those states' numerous weaknesses create misery for only their own citizenry. Moreover, many of threats originate farther up the chain, in wealthier and more stable countries like Russia, China, and Venezuela. Weak Links argues for complexity and nuance, and will force policymakers to rethink what they assume about state failure and transnational insecurity.