As President Trump moves to fulfill his campaign promises across a wide range of issues, the response from the left is always the same: you can’t do that. Reduce immigration and travel to the U.S.? Left-wing judges purport to enjoin it. Try to build a southern wall? Forget it. Revoke by executive order the “clean power plan” that Barack Obama imposed by executive order? Multiple lawsuits have already been filed. Repeal Obamacare? Impossible.
Liberals can’t deny that it is possible to cut foreign aid in favor of domestic spending, as the president has promised to do. But they will resist any change from Barack Obama’s policies and, wouldn’t you know it, the greatest humanitarian crisis since World War II has come along just in time to shore up their case:
The world’s largest humanitarian crisis in 70 years has been declared in three African countries on the brink of famine, just as President Donald Trump’s proposed foreign aid cuts threaten to pull the United States from its historic role as the world’s top emergency donor.
What a coincidence!
If the deep cuts are approved by Congress and the U.S. does not contribute to Africa’s current crisis, experts warn that the continent’s growing drought and famine could have far-ranging effects, including a new wave of migrants heading to Europe and possibly more support for Islamic extremist groups.
I would call this a subtle form of blackmail, except it isn’t subtle.
The conflict-fueled hunger crises in Nigeria, Somalia and South Sudan have culminated in a trio of potential famines hitting almost simultaneously. Nearly 16 million people in the three countries are at risk of dying within months.
This is an absurd claim, unless “at risk” means “at almost no risk.” Worldwide, only around 55 million people die each year, of all causes, mostly old age. That includes, as of 2011, approximately 9.5 million in all of Africa, of whom approximately “400,000 people died in Africa as a result of ‘nutritional deficiencies’ in 2011.” So it appears ridiculous to assert, as the Associated Press does, that 16 million may die of famine in just three countries–Nigeria, Somalia and South Sudan.
But the Associated Press never lets facts stand in the way when bashing Donald Trump is at stake! The AP’s story goes on ad nauseam, but you get the drift. The AP turns to an authoritative source, a former Obama administration official:
“I’ve never seen this kind of threat to what otherwise has been a bipartisan consensus that food aid and humanitarian assistance programs are morally essential and critical to our security,” Steven Feldstein, a former deputy assistant secretary of state in the Obama administration, told The Associated Press.
Individual Americans donate more to humanitarian efforts overseas than does our government. Americans give to responsible charities (i.e., not the United Nations) who do much more with the money than government programs can. I would encourage our readers to consider contributing to one or more of the excellent private charities that fight hunger in Africa.
But if you take seriously the AP’s claim that 16 million people are in danger of dying–approaching three times the toll of the Holocaust–the moral case for military intervention is overwhelming. The AP explains that the projected famine in three African countries is not because rain isn’t falling, it is because Islamic terrorist groups are making agriculture difficult:
South Sudan has been entrenched in civil war since late 2013 that has killed tens of thousands and prevented widespread cultivation of food. In Nigeria and Somalia, extremist groups Boko Haram and al-Shabab have proven stubborn to defeat, and both Islamic organizations still hold territory that complicates aid efforts.
Rather than trying to feed many millions of terrorized people indefinitely, why don’t we go to the source and send in troops to kill the Islamic terrorists? I would support that policy, but somehow I don’t think that is what the Associated Press or other elements of the Democratic Party have in mind. They just want to bash President Trump, relying on fake news and fake statistics.