U.S. sits at #85 in 2010 Global Peace Index

Say it ain’t so.

While peace and stability aren’t easy to come by, this year the world fared slightly worse, partly due to the global recession, according to the fourth annual Global Peace Index.

The survey, which aims to objectively measure security and violence among nations while illustrating drivers of peace, ranked 149 countries this year.

Based on 23 factors, including military expenditures, participation in United Nations peacekeeping, social unrest and jail population, the U.S. placed somewhere in the middle, falling behind China (#80) and Cuba (#72).

Its mediocre spot is due to a combination of factors. While receiving low marks for its domestic murder rate, military expenses and role in international conflicts, it received a boost for respecting human rights and strengthening international relations.

Not surprisingly, Iraq was where it was last year — in the bottom spot.

And New Zealand snagged the top spot, earning the title of most peaceful nation in the world.

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