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The United States: Morgenthau's Puzzle

The United States: Morgenthau's Puzzle

Chapter:
(p.62) Chapter 3 The United States: Morgenthau's Puzzle
Source:
Foreign Aid
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226470627.003.0003

This chapter discusses the history and evolution of US foreign aid. US foreign aid had long been an instrument of Cold War containment, an expression of American altruism, and much more. The combination of diplomacy and development as its most prominent purposes was no accident of history. It was the result of the peculiarities of US domestic politics: the especially controversial nature of foreign aid, both on the right and left of the American political spectrum, and its usefulness to both; the struggle between diplomatic and development interests over the purposes of aid—the latter strengthening over time but never strong enough alone to carry forward aid appropriations year after year; and the nature of American political institutions, which tended to amplify controversies involving foreign aid.

Keywords:   American foreign aid, Cold War containment, American altruism, diplomacy, domestic politics, political institutions

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