WOLA put out a good statement this morning about the Trump administration’s dumpster fire of a budget proposal.
“This budget plan, if enacted, would have disastrous results. By increasing military spending by $54 billion while cutting spending on civilian diplomacy and assistance, the Trump administration is militarizing foreign aid,” said Adam Isacson, WOLA Senior Associate on Defense Oversight. “The risk is that our relations with Latin America and the world will be based on military priorities, on threats—not on shared values, human rights, economic ties, or other vital U.S. interests. Alongside an already militarized approach to border security, this plan will worsen U.S. relations with the rest of the hemisphere at a fragile moment for democracy,” said Isacson.
As WOLA will detail in a forthcoming report, the post-9/11 security climate has already fueled a dramatic shift in responsibilities, with more and more foreign aid programs being managed by the Department of Defense rather than Department of State. This shift has serious implications for transparency and democratic oversight. This proposal would further accelerate that trend.