True Axis of Evil Is Poverty, Pollution, Study Says

Acts of terrorism like the September 11, 2001, attacks on the U.S. are a worst-case symptom of global insecurity brought about by the festering interplay among poverty, infectious disease, and environmental degradation–the true “axis of evil,” according to the Worldwatch Institute in its State of the World 2005 report.

The Washington, D.C.-based research group released its annual report Wednesday. It concludes that until these conditions–and compounding factors such as the spread of small arms–are fiercely fought, political instability, warfare, and extremism will continue to thrive.