Search the Site

Plan Colombia: A $5 Billion Failure?

The U.S. has spent more than $5 billion on military and anti-narcotics aid for Colombia in recent years. In a new article for Slate, Ray Fisman points to a new paper that analyzes conflict and coca production in areas with and without Army bases to determine the impact of all that aid. The researchers found that U.S. military aid is associated with increased paramilitary attacks and fewer anti-narcotics operations. “There’s also some evidence that U.S. dollars may have been channeled to paramilitaries to intimidate voters and keep its government allies in power,” writes Fisman. “Greater U.S. aid is associated with a decline in voter turnout, concentrated in municipalities with Army bases.” (HT: Daniel Lippman) [%comments]