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Continuing PEPFAR In Africa Important Humanitarian Effort, Critical To U.S. Interests

New York Times: America First, in Africa
David Leonhardt, columnist at the New York Times

“…The Chinese government is financing and subsidizing $1 trillion in spending, mostly in low-income countries around the world. … It’s a wonderful development in many ways. It’s also a reminder of China’s rising strategic challenge to the United States. … Our country is not exactly in the midst of a sustained campaign of reaching out to the rest of the world. … On [Thursday’s] Op-Ed page, Bill Frist, the former Republican Senate leader, makes an urgent plea for continuing the PEPFAR program. … President Trump and some close aides have spoken favorably about PEPFAR, but the administration has also raised questions about its ‘massive’ (sic) cost. The overwhelming reason to continue PEPFAR is humanitarian. Yet it has the ancillary benefit of promoting American interests on a continent where our main rival for global influence is very active. As Frist writes: ‘PEPFAR is the greatest humanitarian effort undertaken by the United States in more than 60 years. But it also makes us safer by making afflicted countries stronger, more stable, and more grateful to us'” (2/9).