Here’s an interesting article from the First Things blog. It’s a book review of The Bottom Billion and speaks of the traps that the poorest populations of the world continue to stumble into.
And if you’re not sure what to think about Iraq, let me tell you… j/k. There is an interesting note in there regarding our non-interference in Rwanda because of the Somalia “fiasco” and the current debate on involvement in Iraq. So if you’re heart bleeds for victims of genocide (and it probably should) but at the same time it bleeds for civilians (and/or soldiers) killed in Iraq (and it probably should), consider the argument in this article before you decide that troop withdrawal is the best thing for Iraq and its neighbors. And don’t forget all the genocide that happened under Hussein. However, that’s all really just a corollary.
The real thrust of the book is to talk about how to help our human brothers and sisters in the depths of poverty. As a Christian, I’m particularly concerned about the state of my spiritual brothers and sisters in said deplorable conditions. (At least, I am theoretically. I don’t see past the end of my own belly most of the time.) So, tighten your belt, pull out your sweet tooth, let go of your taste for luxury, pluck out your eyes, whatever you need to do, but do something to contribute to the lives of your brethren, near and far.