Foreign Aid: Argosy of Trivia

"Some days you can't make a nickel," groaned William S. Gaud last week after Congress called for an accounting of corruption and mismanagement in the Agency for International Development. The AID administrator's dejection—if not his figure of speech—was understandable. In the past month, three separate cases of "irregularities," resulting in the suspension or resignation of five officials, have plagued the agency. At the same time, a State Department report on AID'S operations catalogued at least $6.5 million worth of waste and inefficiency in 30 countries from Afghanistan to Viet Nam.

The report,...