Chris Nelson Takes Issue With Andrew Natsios’ OpEd in the Washington Post

[Under the heading “The North Korea Nuke/Food Conundrum” Chris Nelson critiques an OpEd entitled “Stop feeding North Korea’s nuclear ambition” by Andrew Natsios that appeared in the 8 March edition of The Washington Post. Andrew Natsios is currently a professor at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service. He was administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (AID) from May 2001 through December 2005. He is the author of the 2001 book entitled “The Great North Korean Famine”. The following critique is taken from the 9 March 2012 edition of The Nelson Report, with kind permission by the author. –CanKor.]

US-AID food aid at a Kindergarten in Popdong, DPRK (photo by Erich Weingartner)

Another terrible, conflicting example for the international community is food aid to N. Korea, currently being negotiated as part of a larger US effort to regain some negotiating leverage with Pyongyang’s nuclear weapon, missile and proliferation threats far beyond the confines of the DPRK.

W. Bush’s AID Administrator, Andrew Natsios, has an OpEd in the Washington Post this morning which illuminates the risks of fatuousness “goo-goo” demands for “humanitarian assistance” from regimes which are the embodiment of inhumane governance…although he takes a while to wander through a thicket of his own mistaken assertions.

We’re going to indulge in a fairly extensive deconstruction of his discussion, as it manages to illuminate, even when wrong, key dilemmas inherent to deciding “what is the right thing to do?” when dealing with difficult regimes, especially regimes which can fight back. Read the rest of this entry »

Reaction to the NK food crisis by Mitchell Reiss

[This continues the discussion on food aid published in the Nelson Report on 5 April 2011. Mitchell Reiss, President of Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland, was a former US State Department policy planner.]

Starting in the first term of the Bush 43 Administration, USAID director Andrew Natsios articulated the three prongs of a humanitarian relief strategy: (i) real need, (ii) more severe need than other places, and (iii) our ability to monitor the food distribution to ensure that it reaches its target audience. This was a more complete articulation of the first Reagan Doctrine that stated that “a starving child knows no politics.” Read the rest of this entry »

%d bloggers like this: