Foreign Aid for Scoundrels

Cameroon’s President Paul Biya, center, with his wife Chantal Biya at a Bastille Day parade on the Champs Elysées, Paris, July 14, 2010. Photo: Orban Thierry/Sipa Press

Foreign Aid for Scoundrels by William Easterly | The New York Review of Books.

William Easterly has written an article in The New York Review of Books that seems fitting for reading on International Anti-Corruption Day.  Easterly writes about the “dirty secret” of the international aid system: “Despite much rhetoric to the contrary, the nations and organizations that donate and distribute aid do not care much about democracy and they still actively support dictators. The conventional narrative is that donors supported dictators only during the cold war and ever since have promoted democracy. This is wrong.”

Cameroon and Paul Biya feature prominently in the article. Easterly points out $35 billion in foreign aid during the Biya era have led neither to poverty reduction nor growth in Cameroon. “The average Cameroonian is poorer today than when Biya took power in 1982.”

You can read more by Easterly on the “Aidwatch” blog: http://aidwatchers.com/ 

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