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Condemned to Repeat? The Paradox of Humanitarian Action 1st Edition

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ISBN-13: 978-0801487965
ISBN-10: 080148796X
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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

The director of research and former head of the French section of Medicins sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), Terry has written a compelling book about the failure of international humanitarian organizations to take into consideration a wider political context before providing aid. This shortsightedness, argues Terry, results in the paradox that humanitarian aid aimed at alleviating suffering instead sustains the oppressive action that caused it. In clear and concise analysis, she begins with the controversial claim that the aid agencies respond in knee-jerk fashion to any conflict without further investigating or even considering the ramifications of their aid. In four documented cases, Afghan camps in Pakistan, Salvadoran and Nicaraguan camps in Honduras, Cambodian camps in Thailand, and Rwandan camps in Zaire Terry details how aid given to help people often ends up in the coffers of the combatants. Terry backs up her claim with photocopies of documents that will be of special interest to scholars of the 1996 Rwanda massacres. Recommended for all libraries. Glenn Masuchika, Rockwell Collins Information Ctr., Cedar Rapids, IA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Fiona Terry has spent most of the last 20 years involved in humanitarian operations in different parts of the world, including northern Iraq, Somalia, the Great Lakes region of Africa, Liberia and Sudan. She was a research director for Médecins Sans Frontières in Paris from 2000 to 2003 working on North Korea, Sierra Leone and Angola, before spending three years with the ICRC in Myanmar. She holds a Ph.D. in international relations and political science from the Australian National University.


Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press; 1 edition (May 31, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 080148796X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801487965
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #869,116 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Ananda Liyanapathiranage on November 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
Fiona Terry provide a practical aspect of Humanitarian aid through her experince in the field. Humanitarian aid involves working with goverments and rebels sometimes it is hard to avoid workig with people who has blood in their hands to help the innocents or victims. Further she talks about the negative consequences of humanitarian intervention. Great book from an author who has hands on experience on Humanitrian aid.
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23 of 39 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 12, 2004
Format: Paperback
Excellent book- well documented. The author's arguments are furthered bolstered by other writers that have exposed the corrupt, hypocritical, self-serving "aid" industry and their cynical collaboration with the kleptocrats and dictators of the world's vampire states. These other authors include:
Road to Hell: The Ravaging Effects of Foreign Aid and International Charity by Michael Maren
Famine Crimes: Politics & the Disaster Relief Industry in Africa (African Issues) by Alex de Waal
Africa in Chaos : A Comparative History by George B.N. Ayittey ---
A Bed for the Night: Humanitarianism in Crisis by David Rieff
The data is clear, but self-serving elites will continue to prosper and gullible Western taxpayers will continue to vote them into power. They will both continue prop up the kleptocrats and dicators of the world.
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