Friday, December 7, 2007

U.S. Agency’s Slow Pace Endangers Foreign Aid

U.S. Agency’s Slow Pace Endangers Foreign Aid - New York Times:
"The Millennium Challenge Corporation, a federal agency set up almost four years ago to reinvent foreign aid, has taken far longer to help poor, well-governed countries than its supporters expected or its critics say is reasonable.

The agency, a rare Bush administration proposal to be enacted with bipartisan support, has spent only $155 million of the $4.8 billion it has approved for ambitious projects in 15 countries in Africa, Central America and other regions [...]"

My Heart's In Accra

This blog covers development well. Here are some links on it today:

Dissident Voice : Ten Reasons Why “Save Darfur” is a PR Scam: Provocative article argues that US interest in Darfur is a smokescreen for interest in oil, and that if we genuinely cared about genocide, we’d be discussing intervention in Eastern Congo (tags: africa sudan oil uspolitics congo)

Can Greed Save Africa? Investors outside the African continent are building biodiesel facilities, manufacturing fertilizer from formerly flared natural gas, and generally building the commercial and financial infrastructure the continent needs.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Ending Famine, Simply by Ignoring the Experts - New York Times

Look for the article in next month's Science, by Columbia's Pedro Sanchez and Jeff Sachs, on the advances in fighting draught-based malnutrition in Malawi:

Ending Famine, Simply by Ignoring the Experts - New York Times: "...In Malawi itself, the prevalence of acute child hunger has fallen sharply. In October, the United Nations Children’s Fund sent three tons of powdered milk, stockpiled here to treat severely malnourished children, to Uganda instead. “We will not be able to use it!” Juan Ortiz-Iruri, Unicef’s deputy representative in Malawi, said jubilantly. Farmers explain Malawi’s extraordinary turnaround — one with broad implications for hunger-fighting methods across Africa — with one word: fertilizer [...]"

War and Refugees links

World Refugee Survey 2007
(Great basic statistics on refugees!)

The ICRC Code of Conduct
(If time permits, we would like to talk about humanitarian ethics and accountability in class, but the ICRC Code of Conduct should be read by everyone working in the humanitarian field)

UNHCR: Basic Facts
(UNHCR is the UN agency mandated to provide protection and assistance to refugees. This page gives a good basic introduction to the agency.

Human Rights Watch: Child Soldiers
(Good starting point to get an introduction to the problem of child soldiers; the site also has a compilation of reports on child soldiers.)

Invisible Children
(We'll be playing parts of this documentary on child soldiers in Uganda in class, but here's the entire version.)

Yi-Ling & Neda

LA Times article on breastfeeding studies

Breast or bottle? No final answer yet - Los Angeles Times