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It remained a source for raw materials and sometimes was used as a dumping ground for both low-quality goods and waste products from the industrialized countries. The gap between wealthy and poor nations continued to grow in the latter part of the 20th century despite economic conferences attended by leaders of wealthy nations that called for the refinancing of global debt, especially for poor nations in Africa. In the Millennium Summit in 2000, rich nations promised assistance to help poor nations out of the cycle of poverty by increasing education and health care and eradicating hunger while fighting virulent diseases such as malaria and AIDS by working with poor nations.

Many also adopted the Mediterranean diet heavy with fruits and vegetables with little meat. The poor in the West and the rest of the world were generally unable to afford these more expensive foodstuffs or diets. Hence although much of the world’s population was better fed by the beginning of the 21st century, people in Europe, North America, Japan, and Australasia consumed about one-third more 1950 to the Present xxxiii calories per day than people in poor nations. The discrepancy in consumption of protein, particularly meat, was even greater.

Pashtuns ended up on both sides of the border. The departure of the British in 1947 gave Shah Mahmud and other Pashtuns in Afghanistan hope for Pashtun unification. Mahmud and others called for an independent “Pashtunistan” and encouraged rebellion on the Pakistan side of the border. In 1950 in retaliation, Pakistan halted shipments of petroleum to Afghanistan. Crippled without oil, Afghanistan turned to the Soviets and signed a major trade agreement. Pakistan, meanwhile, became an important part of the American military alliance.

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