Rethinking foreign aid
Krogh, Peter F. (Peter Frederic)
Person InterviewedMaynes, Charles W.
Sewell, John W.
Examines U.S. foreign aid policy in the aftermath of the Cold War with the Soviets and the Gulf War in Iraq.
Since the end of World War II, billions of dollars in American foreign aid have gone to countries around the world with the goal of promoting peace, development, and human well-being. However, the aid program has repeatedly come under criticism from policymakers for being bureaucratic, inefficient, and too closely tied to military concerns. With the fall of the Soviet Union, hopes were raised that the U.S. could begin to reevaluate its aid budget, but with the start of the Gulf War the chances of shifting money away from security programs seemed increasingly remote. As of 1991 one-third of U.S. foreign aid went to either Israel or Egypt, with most of the rest going to allies to promote security related programs. This left little money for development in the world’s poorer nations or for the promotion of democracy, causing some to question U.S. commitment to humanitarian efforts. Featuring William Maynes, editor of Foreign Policy Magazine, future Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, and John Sewell, president of the Overseas Development Council, this episode discusses the need to redefine and restructure the American foreign aid program, as well as the importance of trade liberalization and debt reduction for impoverished nations.
Russia; Former Soviet Union;
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