Foreign Aid and National Security

June 17, 2011 • Volume 21, Issue 23
Will cuts in assistance undermine U.S. safety?
By Nellie Bristol


Afghanistan received $4.1 billion in U.S. aid in 2010 (U.S. Agency for International Development)
An Afghan child holds cooking oil provided by the USAID program. Afghanistan received $4.1 billion in U.S. aid in 2010, more than any other nation. (U.S. Agency for International Development)

The Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and subsequent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan prompted U.S. leaders to increase U.S. aid in the belief that improved global stability ultimately undergirds U.S. security. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert Gates are now among those calling for elevating international development assistance and diplomacy to the same status as defense. But budget debates on Capitol Hill could block aid-reform efforts. The Republican-led House calls for drastically reducing international affairs funding, but the Democratic-led Senate and the Obama administration are resisting. Complicating the arguments are questions about the efficiency of America's aid bureaucracy and, ultimately, the effectiveness of the aid itself. While aid supporters point to improved accountability, it's unclear whether future aid requests can withstand the pressure of budget cutters.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Foreign Aid
Feb. 18, 2022  Fragile States
Apr. 23, 2021  U.S. Foreign Aid
Mar. 29, 2019  U.S. Foreign Policy in Transition
Apr. 14, 2017  Rethinking Foreign Aid
May 16, 2014  U.S. Global Engagement
Oct. 02, 2012  Rebuilding Haiti
Mar. 23, 2012  U.S.-Europe Relations
Jun. 17, 2011  Foreign Aid and National Security
Apr. 26, 2002  Foreign Aid After Sept. 11
Sep. 27, 1996  Reassessing Foreign Aid
Sep. 23, 1988  Foreign Aid: a Declining Commitment
Dec. 01, 1965  Development Aid for Poor Nations
Dec. 19, 1962  Foreign Aid Overhaul
Jun. 19, 1957  Population Growth and Foreign Aid
Dec. 12, 1956  Extension of Foreign Aid
Jan. 26, 1955  Aid to Asia
Feb. 04, 1953  Trade Policy and Foreign Aid
May 03, 1951  Future of Foreign Aid
Feb. 09, 1949  American Aid to Greece
Oct. 17, 1947  Conditions for American Aid
Jun. 11, 1947  Financial Aid to Foreign Countries
Aug. 06, 1940  American Relief of Famine in Europe
Feb. 16, 1940  Loans and Credits to Foreign Countries
Humanitarian Assistance