The Washington Memo Blog offers quick updates on current issues and news relevant to work here at the MCC Washington Office. Here are some excerpts from recent blog posts:
Preventing Mass Atrocities: Development Aid
July 19, 2010
“U.S. foreign assistance can be a powerful tool for helping societies recover from or avert violent conflict. However, aid can also undermine stability and deepen societal divisions if not designed and implemented with conflict sensitivity in mind. Years of underinvestment, the prioritization of short-term interests, and a disorganized foreign aid system hamper the United States’ ability to leverage its assistance to prevent conflict….”
Diplomacy: First Line of Prevention
July 15, 2010
“Did you know that the Pentagon has more musicians in its military bands than the State Department has diplomats?
“The State Department’s lack of capacity has translated into the Department of Defense filling in the cracks. The result? U.S. foreign policy relies heavily on defense policies rather than peaceful tools to prevent conflict before it starts.
“This trend is perpetuated by the State Department’s small budget and greatly reduced capacity to respond to emerging crises. A well-trained and resourced diplomatic corps is the first line of prevention–and the best chance we have of making the slogan “never again” a global reality….”