Thursday, December 30, 2004

Coalition of the Willing - Not Just a Catchy Name

Here is a listing of what individual nations and organizations are pledging to the disaster relief is Southeast Asia. The monies quoted are in Australian dollars and the exchange rate to get to US dollars is 1.3 (hat tip to Betsy's Page for the article).

When you add up the monies being donated by the so called "Coalition of the Willing" (the countries that have put troops into Iraq to remove Saddam Hussein and bring democracy to Iraq) - you get $192.52 million ($148.09 million US dollars).

The "coalition of the Willing" nations include: the United Kingdom, Portugal, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Albania, Moldova, Macedonia, Romania, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Estonia, Kazakstan, Mongolia, Japan, Thailand, Philippines, Azerbaijan, Georgia, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Honduras, New Zealand, Australia, and the United States of America. I did not include Spain because they later changed their mind.

When you add up the contributions from the remaining countries you would get $60.68 million ($46.68 million US dollars) plus $5.25 million ($4.04 million US) from the European Union with another $52.6 million ($40.46 million US) pledged. The European Union money is hard to count because many members of the Colalition of the Willing are also EU members.

Please note that I did not count monies from relief organizations in my calculations - because again - much of those monies also probably originate from members of the Coalition of the Willing.

The one thing that is clear is that the Coalition of the Willing is doing the lion's share of the giving. Whoever came up with the name "the Coalition of the Willing" knew what they were talking about.

The coalition nations also won more than 50% of the medals at the last Olympics - even though they represented just 31 of the 202 participating nations.

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