Henry F. Jackson

Essay
Summer
1985
Henry F. Jackson

The foreign debt of African nations has increased so rapidly in recent years that threats of bankruptcy hover across the continent, raising the prospect that Africa's most serious crisis will be triggered not by drought, but by debt. The debt problem is not only slowing economic growth and increasing poverty; it is fomenting political upheaval by forcing these nations to neglect social and economic development in order to make debt payments. People in many countries are denied the most basic public services as their governments devote dwindling export earnings, their main source of income, to economic and political survival.