Traveling abroad presents certain risks for Americans, especially in light of the recent bombings in London, England. For the most part, terrorists are the problem, although drug, gang, and criminal activities can also be a factor. In addition, local health conditions can be a separate problem. Thankfully, the US State Department regularly issues and updates Consular Information Sheets for every country in the world. These sheets give valuable information to travelers, information you must know before you take your next trip.
As mentioned, the Consular Information Sheets provide important information for travelers. You can also check the State Department's Current Travel Warning list to see which nations the US government encourages Americans to avoid altogether. Currently, the following countries are listed:
Israel, the West Bank and Gaza
Central African Republic