Dear VQR Readers,
As many of you already know, today is World AIDS Day . At VQR, we want to mark this important day by offering you a sneak preview of our upcoming Winter issue--a full month before it hits newsstands. The special portfolio focuses on AIDS in Africa. We have commissioned essays by epidemiologist Philip Alcabes, noted AIDS reporter Helen Epstein, award-winning South African journalist Jann Turner, and photographer Charter Weeks.
To view the essays, please CLICK HERE .
WHY AFRICA? WHY NOW?
We felt that now was an especially important time to focus attention on this problem. To say we have forgotten the problems of Africa since we began our "war on terror" would be an understatement. Our government has suspended many of the programs that allow for resettlement of political refugees. We have turned away from enforcing UN demands on African dictators. Worst of all, the Bush administration has made promises for political gain, then broken them for political expediency. In March 2002, for example, President Bush proposed the Millennium Challenge Account, a program by which the United States would increase aid by 50% over the next three years, resulting in an annual increase of $5 billion by fiscal year 2006. Yet, in January 2005, as FY06 approached, Bush requested only $3 billion to fund Millennium Challenge, and Congress cut that amount to $1.75 billion without a struggle from the White House--leaving barely a third of what was originally promised. Little notice has been paid to this broken promise or what it means for Africa. (more in original email).