Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Bush on aid to Africa

Some highlights from President Bush's recent speech on progress in Africa:

In a developing world, we have an unprecedented opportunity to help other nations achieve historic victories over extreme poverty with policies and approaches that are tested and proven. These victories will require new resources. The United States has tripled overseas development aid to Africa during my presidency. And we're making a strong commitment for the future. Between 2004 and 2010, I proposed to double aid to Africa once again, with a primary focus on helping reforming countries.

Yet new resources are not enough. We need new thinking by all nations. Our greatest challenge is to get beyond empty symbolism and discredited policies, and match our good intentions with good results.

  1. First, overcoming extreme poverty requires partnership, not paternalism. Economic development is not something we do for countries, it is something they achieve with us....
  2. Second, overcoming extreme poverty goes hand-in-hand with improving the environment. Stagnant economies are one of the greatest environmental threats in our world. People who lack food and shelter and sanitation cannot be expected to preserve the environment at the expense of their own survival. Poor societies cannot afford to invest in cleaner, more efficient technologies.... The long-term answer to environmental challenges is the rapid, sustained economic progress of poor nations....
  3. Third, overcoming extreme poverty will require lifting a burden of debt that we know poor nations cannot repay....
  4. Fourth, overcoming extreme poverty will require greater trade. While aid and debt relief can create better conditions for development, it is trade that provides the engine for development....
  5. Fifth, overcoming extreme poverty will require an atmosphere of peace, achieved in some cases by effective active military forces that can end terrible conflicts....
  6. Finally, overcoming extreme poverty will require humanitarian aid that focuses on results, not merely on inputs and other flawed measures of compassion. True compassion is measured by real improvements in the lives of men, women and children. And that is the goal and that is the focus of American policy.

AND IN A RELATED MATTER, who's that politician on stage with Wally Stern?

(Photo: Hudson Institute)

(Photo: The White House)

Update: Video of President Bush's speech (without the introduction) is available from BBC here.

Video of the speech (including the introduction) is available from C-SPAN here, but apparently only through mid-July.