Latest Issue

MSF’s tough succour

Why did Médecins Sans Frontières refuse to accept public donations?

By David Rieff   February 2005

The French medical relief agency, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), has always been viewed by other mainstream humanitarian organisations as the nonconformist of the relief world. This is not meant as a compliment. The great mantra of contemporary humanitarian action is co-ordination. The assumption is that private organisations like Oxfam, World Vision, and MSF must not set their policies by themselves, or even in consultation with the people on the ground they have come to assist, but must adhere to common frameworks for their actions that they thrash out together and in consultation with the relevant UN agencies such as the…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect