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I had the privilege of speaking at Dambisa Moyo’s first Washington DC event, held recently at the Cato Institute (watch the webcast here). Her book Dead Aid is a full-frontal attack on aid to Africa (and has attracted an extraordinary amount of media attention). As much of my own work has been highly critical of the aid business, it was somewhat unusual (and a little awkward) to find myself mostly defending foreign aid. While I disagree with her characterization and have several major problems with the book, I do believe her frustration is both genuine and widely held across Africa. For no other reason than this, it should not be dismissed, as some reviewers have tried to do.
For those of you who haven’t yet heard her, or want to continue the debate, Dambisa will be speaking again in Washington at AEI on April 20th, with comments by former World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz.