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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Foreign Aid Reform: Studies and Recommendations
This report gives a brief history of modern U.S. foreign aid and modern legislative efforts to reform foreign aid practices. The report also examines various recommendations from recent studies relating to foreign aid reform. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462653/
Afghanistan: U.S. Foreign Assistance
The U.S. program of assistance to Afghanistan is intended to stabilize and strengthen the Afghan economic, social, political, and security environment so as to blunt popular support for extremist forces in the region. Since 2001, nearly $38 billion has been appropriated toward this effort. This report provides a "big picture" overview of the U.S. aid program and congressional action. It describes what various aid agencies report they are doing in Afghanistan. It does not address the effectiveness of their programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26186/
Afghanistan: U.S. Foreign Assistance
The U.S. program of assistance to Afghanistan is intended to stabilize and strengthen the Afghan economic, social, political, and security environment so as to blunt popular support for extremist forces in the region. Since 2001, nearly $38 billion has been appropriated toward this effort. This report provides a "big picture" overview of the U.S. aid program and congressional action. It describes what various aid agencies report they are doing in Afghanistan. It does not address the effectiveness of their programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26185/
Mérida Initiative for Mexico and Central America: Funding and Policy Issues
In October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Mérida Initiative, a three-year program of U.S. assistance to Mexico and Central America to combat drug trafficking, gangs, and organized crime. This report provides an overview and discussion of the funding provided for Mérida, and presents several issues that Congress may consider as it oversees implementation of the Initiative and shapes its future direction. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26131/
Millennium Challenge Corporation
In a speech on March 14, 2002, President Bush outlined a proposal for a major new U.S. foreign aid initiative. The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) provides assistance through a competitive selection process to developing nations that are pursuing political and economic reforms in three areas: ruling justly, investing in people, and fostering economic freedom. This report describes the MCC and how it differs from other past and current U.S. aid practices. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26218/
U.S. Security Assistance to the Palestinian Authority
This report describes U.S. security assistance in Palestine and how such assistance might lead to progress on (1) the Israeli-Palestinian political track, (2) Palestinian civil society, governance, and economic development, and (3) efforts to end geographical and factional divisions between Palestinians in the West Bank and in Gaza. Policymakers disagree on this issue in various ways, all of which are outlined in this report. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26170/
Instability in Chad
The political and security situation in Chad remains volatile. Ethnic clashes, banditry, and fighting between government forces and rebel groups, both Chadian and Sudanese, have contributed to a fragile security situation in the east. The instability has forced many into exile from their homes due to ongoing violence. The presence of the displaced in refugee camps contributes to the escalated tension in the area. This report discusses these issues, as well as joint efforts between the United Nations and the European Union to deploy aid and improve regional security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26340/
Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, focusing particularly on the influence of the Taliban and other militant groups and on the leadership of Afghan President Hamid Karzai. This report also discusses the U.S.-Afghanistan relationship and U.S. efforts under the Obama Administration to provide military, reconstructive, and stabilization aid. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26199/
Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of Jordanian politics and current issues in U.S.-Jordanian relations. It provides a brief discussion of Jordan's government and economy and of its cooperation in promoting Arab-Israeli peace and other U.S. policy objectives in the Middle East. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26244/
Honduran-U.S. Relations
This report discusses the current state of Honduras, which is one of the Western Hemisphere's poorest countries and has a high poverty rate, high infant mortality rate, and a widespread HIV/AIDS epidemic. This report also discusses the relationship between the U.S. and Honduras, focusing on the countries' important trade partnership, the U.S. military presence in Honduras, and U.S. foreign aid. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26260/
El Salvador: Political, Economic, and Social Conditions and U.S. Relations
This report discusses the state of the El Salvadoran government and recently elected President Mauricio Funes. This report also discusses the relationship between El Salvador and the United States, notably U.S. efforts to restore democracy and initiate economic reform in El Salvador. This report also briefly addresses the effects of the current financial crisis on El Salvador's economy, poverty levels, and crime rates. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26319/
Afghanistan: Government Formation and Performance
This report discusses the current Afghan government, which is rife with corruption and very limited in power, hence the continued presence of the Taliban and general worldwide pessimism about Afghanistan stabilization efforts. This report addresses issues such as ethnic diputes, President Hamid Karzai's re-election bid for August 2009, and the U.S.-Afghanistan relationship in particular. The Obama Administration is currently promoting, among other Afghanistan stabilization efforts, a "civilian surge" of additional U.S. personnel to Afghanistan. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26322/
Mérida Initiative for Mexico and Central America: Funding and Policy Issues
In October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Mérida Initiative, a three-year proposal for $1.4 billion in U.S. assistance to Mexico and Central America aimed at combating drug trafficking, gangs, and organized crime. This report provides an overview and discussion of the funding provided for Mérida, and presents several issues that Congress may consider as it oversees implementation of the Initiative. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26132/
Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006: A Fact Sheet on Department of Defense Authority to Train and Equip Foreign Military Forces
This report provides background on Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act, which provides the Secretary of Defense with authority to train and equip foreign military forces and foreign maritime security forces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463450/
U.S.-Funded Assistance Programs in China
This report explores the United States' relationship with the People's Republic of China (PRC) in the context of law and civil society programs that promote democratic change in China, discussions of human rights, and public diplomacy programs. This report explores in particular the economics of said relationship, including U.S.-funded programs to promote democratic-leaning policy changes. This report also discusses the opinions of analysts and other experts who both defend and oppose such efforts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc26335/
Assistance to North Korea
This report summarizes U.S. assistance to the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea (DPRK, also known as North Korea). It will be updated periodically to track changes in U.S. provision of aid to North Korea. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463094/
Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006: A Fact Sheet on Department of Defense Authority to Train and Equip Foreign Military Forces
This report provides background on Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act, which provides the Secretary of Defense with authority to train and equip foreign military forces and foreign maritime security forces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462763/
Foreign Aid: An Introduction to U.S. Programs and Policy
This report addresses a number of the more frequently asked queries regarding the U.S. foreign aid program, its objectives, costs, organization, the role of Congress, and how it compares to those of other aid donors. In particular, the discussion attempts not only to present a current snapshot of American foreign assistance, but also to illustrate the extent to which this instrument of U.S. foreign policy has changed from past practices, especially since the end of the Cold War and the launching of the war on terror. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463165/
Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia: Political Developments and Implications for U.S. Interests
This report discusses the relationships between the United States and Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, as well as these three nations' political and economic conditions. The report also discusses key related issues in the second session of the 111th Congress, including the question of the United States' role in the South Caucasus, the significance of regional energy resources to U.S. interests, and other pertinent issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462544/
Mérida Initiative for Mexico and Central America: Funding and Policy Issues
In October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Mérida Initiative, a three-year program of U.S. assistance to Mexico and Central America to combat drug trafficking, gangs, and organized crime. This report provides an overview and discussion of the funding provided for Mérida, and presents several issues that Congress may consider as it oversees implementation of the Initiative and shapes its future direction. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463112/
Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006: A Fact Sheet on Department of Defense Authority to Train and Equip Foreign Military Forces
This report provides background on Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act, which provides the Secretary of Defense with authority to train and equip foreign military forces and foreign maritime security forces. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462381/
Pakistan's Capital Crisis: Implications for U.S. Policy
Pakistan - a key U.S. ally in global efforts to combat Islamist militancy - is in urgent need of an estimated $4 billion in capital to avoid defaulting on its sovereign debt. The Pakistani government is seeking short-term financial assistance from a number of sources, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), China, and an informal group of nations (including the United States) known as the "Friends of Pakistan." The current crisis has placed some strain on U.S.-Pakistan relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10820/
Pakistan's Capital Crisis: Implications for U.S. Policy
Pakistan - a key U.S. ally in global efforts to combat Islamist militancy - is in urgent need of an estimated $4 billion in capital to avoid defaulting on its sovereign debt. The elected government of President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani is seeking short-term financial assistance from a number of sources, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), China, and an informal group of nations (including the United States) known as the "Friends of Pakistan." The current crisis has placed some strain on U.S.-Pakistan relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10819/
Haiti: Post-Hurricane Conditions and Assistance
In August and September 2008, four major storms directly hit or passed close to Haiti, causing widespread devastation. As of early October, 2008, the U.S. government has either provided or pledged just over $30 million in humanitarian assistance to affected Haitian populations in response to the hurricanes in Haiti. Congress provided not less than $100 million for hurricane relief and reconstruction assistance for Haiti and other Caribbean countries in the FY2009 continuing appropriations resolution signed into law September 30, 2008. The Haitian government says it needs $400 million over the next 18 months for hurricane recovery and reconstruction, and that so far the international community has committed $145 million. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10811/
Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of Jordanian politics and current issues in U.S.-Jordanian relations. It provides a brief discussion of Jordan's government and economy and of its cooperation in promoting Arab-Israeli peace and other U.S. policy objectives in the Middle East. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462280/
U.S. Foreign Aid to the Palestinians
U.S. aid to the Palestinians has fluctuated considerably over the past three years, largely due to Hamas's changing role within the Palestinian Authority (PA). Since Hamas's forcible takeover of the Gaza Strip in June 2007, the U.S. has dramatically boosted aid levels to bolster the PA and President Mahmoud Abbas vis-à-vis Hamas. Because of congressional concerns that, among other things, U.S. funds might be diverted to Palestinian terrorist groups, much of this assistance is subject to legislative restrictions. Experts advise that PA stability hinges on, now more than ever, improved security, economic development, Israeli cooperation, and the continuation of high levels of foreign assistance. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10805/
Haiti: Legislative Responses to the Food Crisis and Related Development Challenges
Haiti faces several interrelated challenges, the most immediate being a lingering food crisis that in April 2008 led to deadly protests and the ouster of Haiti's prime minister. Haiti also suffers from a legacy of poverty, unemployment, and under-development that is compounding security problems for its new and fragile democracy. This report describes in detail the amount and types of emergency food aid and other relief aid that the United States has sent and will continue to send to Haiti. This report also outlines relevant pieces of legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10742/
Honduran-U.S. Relations
This report examines current political and economic conditions in Honduras as well as issues in Honduran-U.S. relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462225/
Weak and Failing States: Evolving Security Threats and U.S. Policy
This report first provides definitions of weak states and describes the links between weak states, U.S. national security, and development challenges. Second, the report surveys recent key U.S. programs and initiatives designed to address threats emanating from weak states. Finally, it highlights relevant issues about U.S. policy toward these states that Congress may consider. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463455/
International HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria: Key Changes to U.S. Programs and Funding
This report discusses changes in coordination and funding for HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria programs as directed in the Reauthorization Act. It provides background on the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) implementation including results and funding through FY2008. It then discusses similarities and differences between H.R. 5501 as passed by the House on April 2, 2008, and H.R. 5501 as passed by the Senate on July 16, 2008. Finally, it details key outcomes in the legislation as enacted. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462577/
Iraqi Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons: A Deepening Humanitarian Crisis?
This report provides an analysis of the current crisis, including the conditions for those displaced in Iraq and the refugee situations in Syria, Jordan, and elsewhere. It also provides information on the U.S. and international response and examines refugee resettlement options in the United States. Aspects of this crisis that may be of particular interest to the 110th Congress include a focus on an immediate response (providing humanitarian relief funding), examining resettlement policies, and developing a strategy to manage the displaced, particularly within Iraq. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463398/
Central Asia: Regional Developments and Implications for U.S. Interests
This report provides an overview of U.S. policy concerns and relations with countries in central Asia. The report discusses issues such as Fostering Pro-Western Orientations, Obstacles to Peace and Independence, Democratization and Human Rights, Security and Arms Control, Trade and Investment, and provides an Aid Overview. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463452/
U.S. Assistance to North Korea
This report summarizes U.S. assistance to the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea (DPRK, also known as North Korea). It will be updated periodically to track changes in U.S. provision of aid to North Korea. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10605/
The U.N. Population Fund: Background and the U.S. Funding Debate
This report provides an overview of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), its current mission and operations, and recent funding trends. It further discusses the role of the United States in supporting the UNFPA programs, the varying interpretations by several Administrations of legislative authorities pertaining to UNFPA's eligibility for American resources, and congressional debates over how much and under what conditions the United States should voluntarily contribute to UNFPA operations. Finally, it reviews the findings of several private and U.S. government investigations of China's family planning programs and the role UNFPA plays in their implementation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462310/
Iraq: United Nations and Humanitarian Aid Organizations
This report provides an annotated list of U.N. agencies, international organizations, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), key U.S. government agencies, and a sample list of major international and U.S.-based aid organizations that are providing humanitarian assistance to Iraq. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463498/
International HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria: Key Changes to U.S. Programs and Funding
This report describes U.S. efforts to combat international HIV/AIDS through the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) including an overview of its implementation structure, key program elements, results, and funding from FY2004 through FY2008. It also details funding for tuberculosis, malaria, and U.S. contributions to the Global Fund during that time. This report discusses similarities and differences between H.R. 5501 and S. 2731 including proposed changes in program authorities and funding for HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462500/
Central Asia: Regional Developments and Implications for U.S. Interests
This report provides an overview of U.S. policy concerns and relations with countries in central Asia. The report discusses issues such as Fostering Pro-Western Orientations, Obstacles to Peace and Independence, Democratization and Human Rights, Security and Arms Control, Trade and Investment, and provides an Aid Overview. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc461982/
International Food Aid Provisions of the 2008 Farm Bill
The report discusses the international food aid provision (2008 Farm Bill) of U.S. agricultural commodities for emergency relief and economic development. This provision addresses the United States' major response to food security problems in developing countries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc94239/
Global Health: Appropriations to USAID Programs from FY2001 through FY2008
This report details the funds Congress appropriated from FY2001 through FY2008 to the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) for global health programs. The report includes which key programs said appropriations supported and also discusses the role of other U.S. agencies and departments in this context, including the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10767/
Afro-Latinos in Latin America and Considerations for U.S. Policy
This report reviews and analyzes the situation, concerns, and activities of Afro-descendants in the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking nations of Latin America. It then discusses current U.S. foreign aid programs, as well as multilateral initiatives, that have directly or indirectly assisted Afro-Latinos. The report concludes with a discussion of potential policy options that have been proposed should the United States elect to provide further support for Afro-Latinos. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462286/
Haiti: Legislative Responses to the Food Crisis and Related Development Challenges
Haiti faces several interrelated challenges, the most immediate being a lingering food crisis that in April 2008 led to deadly protests and the ouster of Haiti's prime minister. Haiti also suffers from a legacy of poverty, unemployment, and under-development that is compounding security problems for its new and fragile democracy. This report describes in detail the amount and types of emergency food aid and other relief aid that the United States has sent and will continue to send to Haiti. This report also outlines relevant pieces of legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10740/
Merida Initiative: Proposed U.S. Anticrime and Counterdrug Assistance for Mexico and Central America
In October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Mérida Initiative, a multi-year proposal for $1.4 billion in U.S. assistance to Mexico and Central America aimed at combating drug trafficking, gangs, and organized crime. This report outlines the various appropriations and other foreign aid measures outlined in the Mérida Initiative and what future actions regarding this ongoing effort will include. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10729/
U.S. Assistance to North Korea
This report summarizes U.S. assistance to the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea (DPRK, also known as North Korea). It will be updated periodically to track changes in U.S. provision of aid to North Korea. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10604/
State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs: FY2009 Appropriations
This report analyzes the FY2009 request and recent-year funding trends; it tracks major foreign policy issues Congress may consider and highlights congressional action throughout the appropriations process. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463319/
Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E): Background, Status, and Selected Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) design. The report discusses the legislative origins and policy debates prior to ARPA-E authorization and Bush administration response to ARPA-E authorization. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463302/
International Food Aid Provisions
Provision of U.S. agricultural commodities for emergency relief and economic development is the United States' major response to food security problems in developing countries. Title III in the omnibus farm bill enacted in June 2008, the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, reauthorizes and makes a number of changes in U.S. international food aid programs. Farm bill debate over U.S. food aid programs focused generally on how to make delivery of food aid more efficient and more effective. This report explores this and related legislation, as well as the areas of this ongoing and international issue that are continually debated. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10760/
Merida Initiative: Proposed U.S. Anticrime and Counterdrug Assistance for Mexico and Central America
In October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Mérida Initiative, a multi-year proposal for $1.4 billion in U.S. assistance to Mexico and Central America aimed at combating drug trafficking, gangs, and organized crime. This report outlines the various appropriations and other foreign aid measures outlined in the Mérida Initiative and what future actions regarding this ongoing effort will include. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10730/
Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2006: A Fact Sheet on Department of Defense Authority to Train and Equip Foreign Military Forces
Section 1206 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2006 provides the Secretary of Defense with authority to train and equip foreign military forces. Thus far, the Department of Defense (DOD) has used Section 1206 authority primarily to provide counterterrorism support. Section 1206 obligations totaled some $100 million in FY2006 and $279 million in FY2007. Obligations for FY2008 total almost $25 million as of May 20, 2008. Funds may only be obligated with the concurrence of the Secretary of State. This authority expires at the end of FY2008. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10732/
International Food Aid: U.S. and Other Donor Contributions
The United States is the world's major provider of international food aid to low-income developing countries. This report provides three indicators of the U.S. contribution to global food aid: (1) shipments of major donors compiled by the International Grains Council, (2) U.S. contributions to the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), and (3) the U.S. commitment under the Food Aid Convention (FAC). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10577/
Iraq: Reconstruction Assistance
This report describes recent developments in the large-scale assistance program, the Iraq Relief and Reconstruction Fund (IRRF), undertaken by the United States and the international community in an effort to rehabilitate economic infrastructure and introduce representative government to post-war Iraq, and examines key issues of potential interest to Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc461915/