Friday, April 05, 2024

The US Foreign Assistance Map

animated world map showing US foreign assistance to individual countries from 1948-2024

The US government's Foreign Assistance website provides detailed information and data on U.S. foreign assistance programs. The website serves as a central platform for transparency and accountability in U.S. foreign aid efforts. It also provides a fascinating insight into the shifting geo-political ambitions of the United States over the last 75 years.

The Foreign Assistance Dashboard reveals the amount of foreign assistance provided by the US to countries around the world by year. The size of the circular markers on the map indicate the amount of money provided by the US to each country in the displayed year. Click on a country on the map and you can view a detailed breakdown of the funding programs provided by the US in that selected year.

The Foreign Assistance Trends map provides a really interesting overview of the changing geo-political priorities of the United States over time. In the early 1950's the majority of US foreign assistance was being provided to European countries, presumably to help them rebuild after WWII. For example in 1953 the US provided $4.2B in foreign assistance to the UK, $4.6B to Italy, $5.3B to France and $2.3B to Germany.

During the 1960's US foreign assistance was directed away from Europe and towards South-East Asia. In 1967 $8.3B in foreign assistance was provided to Vietnam, $3.1B to Korea and $780M in Taiwan ( n.b. the U.S. military presence in Vietnam peaked in April 1969).

Since the late 1970's Israel has increasingly become by far the largest recipient of US foreign assistance. As a result of the Afghan War (2001 to 2021) Afghanistan temporarily became the largest recipient of US foreign assistance between 2008 and 2020. Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022 Ukraine has become the largest recipient of US foreign assistance.

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