The U.S. foreign-aid budget, visualized




The map for military funding is far more skewed. About three-quarters of all direct military aid goes to just two countries: Israel and Egypt. Israel is the largest recipient of U.S. aid since World War II — the country was forged into existence only in 1948. And Egypt procured such robust funding only by agreeing to an American-brokered peace deal with Israel in the 1978 Camp David Accords.

U.S. military aid also comes with major strings attached. Primary among them: Recipient countries have to spend that money on U.S. defense contracts. The only country partially exempted from this rule is Israel, which, according to the current agreement, can spend up to 26 percent of the aid it receives on products of its own defense industry. This provision was included to help Israel grow its fledgling defense industry decades ago. The new agreement does away with the provision, gradually phasing it out, to Israel’s chagrin.

The $3.8 billion, it’s worth mentioning, is less than the $4 billion to $5 billion a year that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had sought.

Put together, the data from both maps, and the list of the top-10 aid recipients overall, shakes out like this:


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