IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/unm/unumer/2017010.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

U.S. and Soviet foreign aid during the Cold War: A case study of Ethiopia

Author

Listed:
  • Broich, Tobias

    () (UNU-MERIT, and Maastricht University)

Abstract

This study provides a historical perspective of Ethiopia's position in the international aid game at the Horn of Africa during the Cold War era (1945-1991). The main conclusions of this study are threefold. First, the countries of Ethiopia and Somalia became classic examples of pawns in Cold War politics. The two superpowers, the United States of America (USA) and the Soviet Union, switched sides to support countries to which they had been previously furnishing assistance at the apex of the Cold War. Second, recipient governments are able to use international development assistance as a tool to implement as much of their policy agenda as possible. Both the Imperial Government of Ethiopia (1941-1974) and the Ethiopian communist government (1974-1990) aimed at maximising external financial resources while minimising the amount of loss of sovereignty over the policy agenda. Third, the 1984-86 famine in the Horn of Africa region convincingly highlights the moral dilemma that the international donor community faced when assisting non-democratic recipient states. Ethiopia's history has provided two valuable lessons for the successive Ethiopian Government during the post-Cold War era: (i) the extent to which a lack of economic development and widespread death caused by famine contributed to the demise of both Ethiopian governments during the Cold War era; (ii) the extent to which large financial and military dependence of both the imperial government and the communist government on one major ally (USA and Soviet Union, respectively) during the Cold War played a decisive part in the overthrow of both governments.

Suggested Citation

  • Broich, Tobias, 2017. "U.S. and Soviet foreign aid during the Cold War: A case study of Ethiopia," MERIT Working Papers 010, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  • Handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2017010
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.merit.unu.edu/publications/wppdf/2017/wp2017-010.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Elias Papaioannou, 2014. "National Institutions and Subnational Development in Africa," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(1), pages 151-213.
    2. Robert C. Feenstra & Robert Inklaar & Marcel P. Timmer, 2015. "The Next Generation of the Penn World Table," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(10), pages 3150-3182, October.
    3. Osafo-Kwaako, Philip & Robinson, James A., 2013. "Political centralization in pre-colonial Africa," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 6-21.
    4. Gaaitzen de Vries & Marcel Timmer & Klaas de Vries, 2015. "Structural Transformation in Africa: Static Gains, Dynamic Losses," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 51(6), pages 674-688, June.
    5. Michalopoulos, Stelios & Papaioannou, Elias, 2015. "Further evidence on the link between pre-colonial political centralization and comparative economic development in Africa," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 126(C), pages 57-62.
    6. Jutta Bolt & Jan Luiten Zanden, 2014. "The Maddison Project: collaborative research on historical national accounts," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 67(3), pages 627-651, August.
    7. McVety, Amanda Kay, 2012. "Enlightened Aid: U.S. Development as Foreign Policy in Ethiopia," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199796915.
    8. Mascagni, Giulia, 2016. "A Fiscal History of Ethiopia: Taxation and Aid Dependence 1960-2010," Working Papers 12777, Institute of Development Studies, International Centre for Tax and Development.
    9. Nicola Gennaioli & Ilia Rainer, 2007. "The modern impact of precolonial centralization in Africa," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 12(3), pages 185-234, September.
    10. Collier, Paul & Dollar, David, 2002. "Aid allocation and poverty reduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(8), pages 1475-1500, September.
    11. Bermeo, Sarah Blodgett, 2011. "Foreign Aid and Regime Change: A Role for Donor Intent," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 39(11), pages 2021-2031.
    12. Gibson, Clark C. & Andersson, Krister & Ostrom, The late Elinor & Shivakumar, Sujai, 2005. "The Samaritan's Dilemma: The Political Economy of Development Aid," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199278855.
    13. Broich, Tobias & Szirmai, Adam & Thomsson, Kaj, 2015. "Precolonial centralisation, foreign aid and modern state capacity in Africa," MERIT Working Papers 025, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Ethiopia; Foreign Aid; United States; Soviet Union; Cold War;

    JEL classification:

    • F35 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Aid
    • F50 - International Economics - - International Relations, National Security, and International Political Economy - - - General
    • N47 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - Africa; Oceania
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:unm:unumer:2017010. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ad Notten). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/meritnl.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.