The international community is often left to bemoan the fact that it lacks effective early warning tools for major humanitarian crises and conflicts. Yet, today in Liberia it is presented with almost a textbook case of all the major warning signs of a deteriorating situation across a range of political, military, economic and social fronts. The real question will be whether it can not only recognise these signs, but also muster the will to take effective action to prevent the situation from escalating into broader violence.