Author Topic: USA foreign and UN aid reform  (Read 1399 times)

shalab

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USA foreign and UN aid reform
« on: December 23, 2018, 11:17:47 AM »
I was reading Nikki Haley interview and it is interesting:

Aid to Canada in 2017, 35 million
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/CAN

Aid to China in 2017, 53 million
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/CHN

Aid to Russia in 2017, 167.7 million
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/RUS

Aid to Israel in 2017, 3.19 billion
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/ISR

Jordan - 1.5 billion
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/JOR

Aid to Pakistan in 2017, 836 million
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/PAK



UN budget and foreign aid:

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/12/nikki-haley-interview-transcript/577555/

Friedman: Beyond the question of moral leadership, you’ve had to decide what to focus on and what not to focus on. Do you push for the joint investigative mechanism in Syria? Do you push for UN internal reforms? Or do you do other work? I assume that in doing that, you’ve had to have some kind of working definition of what America’s role in the world should be beyond the question of moral leadership. What have you landed on? How do you think about what America’s role is, because you can’t do everything, right?

Haley: I wanted to make sure we had a good sector of what we focused on, and some of it was planned and some just fell in my lap that I needed to take. One, I was just honored to serve a country I love so much. I wanted to do it in a way that the American public was proud. I thought it was very important that we continue to stand by our allies, which you saw me do, whether it’s Ukraine, whether it’s Israel—all those. I thought it was very important that we go against the dictators, whether it was Iran, Syria, Cuba, Venezuela, and call them out for what they were doing. I thought UN reform mattered because the American public should get what it pays for. We took on reform efforts and were able to slice $1.3 billion off the UN budget and are still moving in that direction; reformed and brought accountability to peacekeeping; we’re now focused on the scales of assessment on what countries pay. That part was also very important. And then just the overall security in the world—making sure that we saw problems before they happened, and that we were in front of it to go ahead and put out those fires. I think those were a lot of things.

One of the things that landed in my lap that was really glaring was the foreign aid. It was probably over a year ago, our team put together a book for the president, and it basically was all of the foreign aid we give each and every country, and the voting coincidence with that, at the UN. I went and I gave him this book and I said, “I just want you to look at this.” He was shocked. He was furious. My point to him was, our aid should not be based on just this vote. But we don’t need to be giving money to countries that say “Death to America.” We don’t need to be giving money to countries that go behind our back and try and stop us from doing things. We don’t need to be giving money to those that don’t want to be our partners, because there’s a lot of countries that do want to be our partners, and we just need to be smart about it. I think it should be one of the things we look at, but I think there should be a strategic view on which countries we partner with, which ones we count on to work with us on certain things, and move forward accordingly. I think we just blindly allow money to keep going without thinking that this is real leverage. We have to use it. The one example I’ll give you is, look at Pakistan. Giving them over a billion dollars, and they continue to harbor terrorists that turn around and kill our soldiers—that’s never okay. We shouldn’t even give them a dollar until they correct it. Use the billion dollars. That’s not a small amount of change. Tell them, “You have to do these things before we will even start to help you with your military or start to help you on counterterrorism.” It’s those types of things that you really want to kind of look at.

I think the Iran deal was very telling. Everybody meant well. Everybody wanted Iran to stop what they were doing. But the reality was, they took most of what they could get and they turned a blind eye to the rest of it, and the blind eye was dangerous. The idea that you’re doing ballistic-missile testing is dangerous. The idea that you’re supporting terrorism is dangerous. The idea that you’re meddling in countries—whether it’s Lebanon, whether it’s Israel, whether it’s Syria, all of these things—and you’re meddling for the bad reasons in the Middle East. That’s serious. To give them literally a plane-load of money—is that smart? Should we not have used it as leverage and worked in a different way? That was the only point I was trying to make to the president, which is that all of the agencies need to come together, and for all of the reasons they give, we need to have a plan on what our relationship is with that country and how much do we want to do.


« Last Edit: December 23, 2018, 11:20:34 AM by shalab »


LC

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2018, 11:44:54 AM »
You are presenting a misleading story...you have to remove all the Military/Defense spending from these numbers to get a real sense of the issue here.

For example, Iraq "received" $3.7B in 2017, and this is down from $9.7B in 2006. Of course it's almost all military spending.

"Lethargy bordering on sloth remains the cornerstone of our investment style."
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shalab

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2018, 12:03:45 PM »
Not sure where you are getting defense spending from, USAid from wikipedia:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Agency_for_International_Development

You are presenting a misleading story...you have to remove all the Military/Defense spending from these numbers to get a real sense of the issue here.

For example, Iraq "received" $3.7B in 2017, and this is down from $9.7B in 2006. Of course it's almost all military spending.

EliG

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2018, 12:24:25 PM »
Aid to Canada in 2017, 35 million
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/CAN

Of $35M, $32M goes to Ducks Unlimited. The break-down is right there on the page you linked.

Ducks Unlimited is an *American* non-profit. It does some conservation work in Canada to restore and protect wetlands that are home to migratory birds. Most of those birds migrate between Canada and the US.

Conservation is just one aspect of their work. Hunting is another. Take a look at their hunting resources:

https://www.ducks.org/hunting

They do conservation work for many different reasons but one of them is to develop shooting targets for American duck hunters (not that there is anything wrong with that).

To classify this kind of spending as "Aid to Canada" is bureaucratic B.S.


LC

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2018, 12:51:36 PM »
Not sure where you are getting defense spending from, USAid from wikipedia:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Agency_for_International_Development

You are presenting a misleading story...you have to remove all the Military/Defense spending from these numbers to get a real sense of the issue here.

For example, Iraq "received" $3.7B in 2017, and this is down from $9.7B in 2006. Of course it's almost all military spending.

From the links you provided...

Take Pakistan (830MM):
https://explorer.usaid.gov/cd/PAK

Scroll down to the three categories which breakdown the ~800MM (Top Activities/Partners/Sectors)

Top Activity:
Dept of Defense/Foreign Military Financing (250MM)

Top Partner:
US Govt - Dept of Defense (280MM)

Top Sector:
Conflict,Peace,and Security (310MM)



"Lethargy bordering on sloth remains the cornerstone of our investment style."
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LC

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2018, 12:59:39 PM »
What's funny is how Military spending gets classified as foreign aid.

What's even more funny is some of the names these activities are given:
"Civilian Peace Building"
"Security System Management and Reform"
"Legal and Judicial Development"

And who knows what other Military spending items are stuffed under the more innocuous-sounding line items.
"Lethargy bordering on sloth remains the cornerstone of our investment style."
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brk.b | cash

rb

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2018, 01:29:08 PM »
Aid to Israel is 99% military.

Most of the Aid to Russia goes towards securing their nukes.

MarkS

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2018, 01:38:36 PM »
LC 

If you look at the Organizational Chart under USAid you will find The Bureau of Foreign Assistance.

https://www.usaid.gov/who-we-are/organization/bureaus/foreign-assistance

Here is the definition of Foreign Assistance.

https://www.foreignassistance.gov

Foreign Assistance is quite a bit broader than foreign aid and includes responding to conflict.

LC

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2018, 01:52:41 PM »
Call it whatever you want but when you make a point that "US spends 850MM on foreign aid to Pakistan, despite all the terrorism in Pakistan!"

And ignore that probably 300-400 of that aid is to directly deal with terrorism, you are misrepresentign the situation.
"Lethargy bordering on sloth remains the cornerstone of our investment style."
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MarkS

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Re: USA foreign and UN aid reform
« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2018, 02:01:19 PM »
LC

Please read what she said:

"The one example I’ll give you is, look at Pakistan. Giving them over a billion dollars, and they continue to harbor terrorists that turn around and kill our soldiers—that’s never okay. We shouldn’t even give them a dollar until they correct it. Use the billion dollars. That’s not a small amount of change. Tell them, “You have to do these things before we will even start to help you with your military or start to help you on counterterrorism.” It’s those types of things that you really want to kind of look at."

 She's stating that Pakistan is harboring terrorist that kill our soldiers and that as long as that situation exists they shouldn't get a penny from us.