Nationalism Threatens Britain’s Successful Foreign Aid Efforts
The Guardian: Brexit-led nationalism is destroying Britain’s overseas aid effort
Steve Bloomfield, deputy editor of Prospect magazine
“…The most prominent outriders for a cut to the aid budget … are also Brexit’s loudest cheerleaders. That’s no coincidence: a form of nationalism, particularly the idea of a generous Britain being taken for a ride by foreigners, fuels [these] campaigns. … Yet what none of those who propose scrapping [the Department for International Development (DfID)] or reducing its budget like to acknowledge is that it’s actually very good at spending money. It ranks third in the annual Aid Transparency Index, and among international aid experts has one of the best reputations in the world. A report published this month by the ONE campaign also praised DfID for its effectiveness, transparency, and focus on poverty. In short, DfID is working. … British aid is not perfect. But it has transformed millions of lives, helped end humanitarian emergencies, and boosted British soft power. It would be a tragedy if, post-Brexit, we retreated further into our shell and destroyed one of the few things we’re actually good at” (2/18).