Child soldiers are the latest casualties of the Maoist violence that has claimed 7,000 lives. We seem to be moving closer towards the rank of violence-ridden, failed states of Africa. The donor community is afraid Nepal is falling into a vicious low income, low capital, low production spiral. One can easily imagine what will happen if the economic growth rate of a poor country like Nepal declines to zero.
A history of failed states around the world show three factors change a nation: they are violence, poverty and political instability. These three elements are responsible for pushing Sierra Leone, Rwanda, Congo and Afghanistan into "failed state" status.
Nepal's downfall has been poverty. In the last few decades we have failed to attain a necessary growth rate of 5 percent. The future will almost certainly see an intensification of the conflict between the security forces and the Maoists. Nepalis killing fellow Nepalis could escalate into a civil war that traps us in a circle of violence. Similarly, the political ambition of the king and the selfishness and of political parties are proof enough that Nepal has already fallen into a period of unprecedented political instability.