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August 30, 2005

Bolton Fights for Global Starvation

Bush's war in Iraq is criminal, but its efforts there are far less deadly than its approach to global economic development, where it has actively sabotagued efforts to fight AIDS with its abstience-only policy and with its opposition to real economic aid. Now, Bolton has spent his first few weeks on the job attacking the Millennium Development Goals, thte plan for developed nations to increase support for those countries. As this LA Times editorial lays out:
[Bolton's] most odious change was to delete all references to the Millennium Development Goals, which commit industrialized nations to cutting world poverty in half by 2015. Part of the deal was that rich countries would eventually contribute 0.7% of their gross national product to foreign aid... Most of Europe is moving closer to the 0.7% goal, but the United States has long lagged; last year it contributed 0.16% of national income to foreign aid. Bolton's amendments make it clear that the Bush administration would like to pretend the millennium agreement never happened. This is a slap in the face for the aid organizations and international donors that have been working for years toward meeting the Millennium Development Goals. But it's far worse than that for the Third World, where their abandonment would be a death sentence for millions.
History will no doubt remember Iraq as Bush's largest debacle, but its efforts to undermine global poverty relief should rank higher on its attributed body count.

Posted by Nathan at August 30, 2005 08:19 AM