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Editions. War Games . Linda Polman ‘Polman shines a light on the multibillion dollar juggernaut that is today’s humanitarian aid network. But as Linda Polman’s War Games reveals, the delivery of aid can often have unintended consequences. Relying on decades of experience as. Conor Foley: Of course there are problems with the aid industry, but books like Linda Polman’s War Games only simplify the debate.

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Because life-saving aid sometimes goes to the wrong people, it would be better to give it to no one in certain situations, she opines — without seeming to have followed through the polkan ethical and moral implications.

Giving aid sometimes means lengthening civil wars, supporting oppressive regimes and helping people that committed genocides before helping their victims. If you’ve ever thought about donating or helping for an international cause, especially wad it comes to material aid, have a look at this book. I debated with Polman at the Frontline club last week and have no doubt that she is sincere and committed.

The inevitable conflict and use of aid agencies that arises when they are llinda major potential source of income. Not very good at all. I honestly had expected a list of factoids assembled in an effort only to bash Bush and any other Republicans in power at the time of its publishing. Seems to me that it can easily become rather polnan for most of the people, who still hold an altruistic vision and believe in the principles of organisations such as the Red Cross. Aid agencies also have growing political clout, playing a leading role in shaping foreign policies of western governments towards humanitarian crises linva sometimes even helping to trigger foreign military interventions.

What does a solution look like? There are no discussion topics on this book yet.

Nikolai Lang rated it it was ok Jan 08, Return to Book Page. Eye-opening look at some of the problems with the aid ‘industry’, I kept reading paragraphs of this aloud and irritating people, highly recommended! It’s an essential read for anyone pursuing a career in humanitarian aid and who wants to know more about how aid is implemented and practiced. While reading this book, I was surprised at myself for not having the presence of mind to previously doubt the intentions and motives of various “humanitarian efforts” in countries far away from here, as well.


I was very wrong. Paperbackpages.

Attacking humanitarian aid with cliche

She just lumps them all in together, and as such, her views lack nuance or understanding. She concludes this chapter by saying “just as [aid workers] do little, if anything to keep their local employees safe [they] do little to reduce the risks for aid recipients” — a remark as untrue as it is insulting. Her pacy, readable ear concise book is full of vivid and disturbing anecdotes: Books by Linda Polman. Be prepared for a long disaster filled history lesson But, I guess that’s one reason we read books – to open our minds to things we wouldn’t necessarily think about ourselves.

No human system is perfect and the aid industry — with its blurred lines of ploman, lack of independent scrutiny and gamed opaque spending channels — is in particular need of reform. Food, medical care, shelter, etc While not alleviating any one person of fault, it is obvious that Linda Polman’s interest lies strictly in illustrating a realistic portrayal of life in the world of aid volunteers in the third wad.

Great expose of the development environment and how it is practiced.

Of course there are problems with the aid industry. But, just as importantly, the aid system needs to be made more accountable to the wishes and preferences of the pollman we are trying to help. It was easy to read in short spurts – a few pages on lind train or a couple quick pages while the kettle was boiling. The research is also often just bad. A collection of the best contributions and reports from the Telegraph focussing on the key events, decisions and moments in Churchill’s life.

The merit of such books is that they should force those who believe that aid can do good to respond, rather than just assuming that the arguments for saving lives or reducing poverty are self-apparent. The case for international aid has been won at the macro-political level — as shown by the cross-party consensus about Britain’s aid budget — but Polman’s book will tap an underlying sentiment, which should not be underestimated.

Attacking humanitarian aid with cliche | Conor Foley | Opinion | The Guardian

It has made me more sceptical and will make me question even more how my actions impact development on the ground. The book shows a ton of criticism to the current humanitarian industry, and gives plenty of reasons to back up said criticism, but lacks any concrete suggestions toward a solution. The evidence, by way of anecdotes of regions or conflict zones, are threaded throughout the book; as though the anecdotes are in conversation with each other.


Somewhat annoying, as the subtitle of the book, The Story of Aid and War in Modern Times, suggests a more structured and researched approach. An Introduction” which you can find at https: War Games has rightly been compared to Dead Aid — although Dambisa Moyo specifically exempts humanitarian aid from her “shock therapy” proposal — and it will appeal to a similar readership.

A large number of agencies had pulled out of the camps long before Polman arrived and her failure to acknowledge this weakens what is otherwise a fairly standard treatment of the issues.

Trivia About War Games: A very provocative account on everything that has happened during the years of humanitarian aid supply and distribution. Marina Morales rated it really liked it Jan 04, It has been shown that democracies do not suffer from famine and that the amputations in west Africa, gzmes the Sierra Leonan civial war, were fueled by the media’s attention for it.

Anyone wxr has spent time in a war zone knows that aid gets diverted. Further, although the book pooman published inshe bases all of her arguments on observations she made in the s, failing to account for the massive push in professionalization and standards-based delivery of humanitarian assistance that has changed the humanitarian movement since the more amateurish 90s which, to be clear, was 20 years ago.

Show 25 25 50 All. One of the most interesting book I’ve read recently.

Polman, as she freely admits, is stronger on diagnosing problems than proposing cures. Monday 31 December Highlights deep corruption in much humanitarian work. Interesting though they are, they also quickly feel old. Jul 16, Liisa rated it it was amazing Shelves: I laugh because of the absurdity and I am angry because of the constant Catch There does not seem to have been an expat war-zone bar or luxury hotel in which Polman has not stopped to gather evidence, eavesdropped a conversation or noted a double-standard.