Look, the West can’t help everyone and the regimes would be insulted if we tried. But they don’t need our help. The greatest poverty in our time has been in China and India. Did these countries reduce poverty because of our help? No. They did it themselves.

Giving is problematic. We take money from poor people in rich countries and give it to rich people in poor countries.

That’s Shimon Peres, on foreign aid. The debate over the efficacy of anti-poverty efforts abroad is too complex to reduce to a give-or-don’t-give dichotomy, but I think it’s definitely worth thinking about how India and China have done so much to reduce poverty themselves and the best ways to replicate those dynamics.

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