External-led state building is at the forefront of international security governance; it has been called “a growth industry”; and it is, against the backdrop of the USled intervention in Iraq, more controversial than ever. Since the end of the cold war, the UN have launched more than 60 missions in 24 countries. Whilst the primary objective of all of these missions was to monitor, keep, enforce or build peace, a second objective, which is intrinsically linked to the first, was to contribute directly or indirectly to the reestablishment of functioning state-hood. Peace-building mission have become state-building missions. There are two broad reasons for this. First, fragile states are seen as a risk to both their societies and to international security. And second, it is now broadly assumed that one vital condition for sustainable peace is that the state-apparatus has the capacity to exercise core functions of state-hood in an efficient, non-violent and legitimate way. Consequently, peace-building is more and more seen as state-building, and this evolution is reflected in both UN strategy documents, and the development aid strategies of most nation states.