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Obama-USA doing it right with aid to Haiti

Less than a penny of each dollar the U.S. is spending on earthquake relief in Haiti is going in the form of cash to the Haitian government, according to an Associated Press review of relief efforts.

Two weeks after President Obama announced an initial $100 million for Haiti earthquake relief, U.S. government spending on the disaster has nearly quadrupled to $379 million, the U.S. Agency for International Development announced Wednesday. That's about $1.25 each from everyone in the United States.

Each American dollar roughly breaks down like this: 42 cents for disaster assistance, 33 cents for U.S. military aid, nine cents for food, nine cents to transport the food, five cents for paying Haitian survivors for recovery efforts, just under one cent to the Haitian government, and about half a cent to the Dominican Republic.

Relief experts say it would be a mistake to send too much direct cash to the Haitian government, which is in disarray and has a history of failure and corruption.

"I really believe Americans are the most generous people who ever lived, but they want accountability," said Timothy R. Knight, a former US AID assistant director who spent 25 years distributing disaster aid. "In this situation they're being very deliberate not to just throw money at the situation but to analyze based on a clear assessment and make sure that money goes to the best place possible." MORE>>>>>

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