The United States of America is at the very top of the list of countries that give the most foreign aid to other countries. Although this is very generous action, many people turn to fault finding and thus foreign aid often becomes the basis of various conspiracy theories. The first myth that needs to be debunked is the belief that the U.S. spends around 25% of the Federal budget on foreign aid. This is not true and the amount is actually only 1%, although the sums of money seem pretty large. Data for U.S. foreign aid by country in 2016 shows that the largest amount went to Israel ($3.10 billion) just as it was the case in 2015. Things have changed a little bit since then, and Insider Monkey experts compiled a list of top 15 countries that get the most foreign aid from the US using the newest data for the year 2017.
Of course, it is logical that the money goes to developing countries but sometimes, in case of emergencies (usually natural disasters) some funds go to developed countries as well, mostly in form of humanitarian aid. Foreign aid is not only financial, although it is the most common way of offering aid to countries in need. Sometimes, countries offer military aid and this is often the most controversial form. Military aid technically means enabling US allies to acquire American military equipment and training. Since this is usually the case with countries that have a strategically important location for fighting terrorism, conspiracy theorists use the opportunity to claim that the U.S. is actually arming the terrorists. However, the reality (as far as we know) is different and military aid is necessary in order to fight the common enemy, terrorism. Also, there is a so-called “bilateral aid” which is given by the U.S. government directly to another country with a purpose of promoting economic progress and stability in developing countries. In the case of the U.S., the importance of foreign aid is immense despite the fact that it is only 1% of the Federal budget. This 1%, ladies and gentlemen, is saving thousands of lives and attempting to improve the quality of life in developing countries.