It's 2008, not 1961

Did you know that U.S. foreign policy is backwards? Okay, I think that might be a dump question considering the people currently running the White House. No, but serious, the way America deals with providing aid overseas today is mostly based on how on the world dealt with problems under the pressures of the Cold War.

From the Center for Global Development:

The world is becoming increasingly interconnected as opportunities and challenges here in the U.S. and abroad tie us to the rest of the world in ways we are only beginning to understand.

American foreign assistance programs have proved to be an influential aspect of our engagement with the world in the past, but our foreign assistance policy was written in 1961. A lot has changed since then.

We need a new foreign assistance policy for the 21st century. The 2008 presidential elections are our chance to make that happen.

The Foreign Assistance Act was established in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy to provide goodwill to countries in need of aid, while indirectly discouraging them from taking up with the Soviets. While there were some updates to the act in 2004 to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic, there are many other enormous problems the current FA Act can not address in its current state.

CGD is running a petition drive, asking concerned Americans to encourage whoever moves into the White House in January to revisit the Act.

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