Democracy And Human Rights

Do not forget those who suffer under tyranny and violence. Do not abandon them to the evils of totalitarian rule or democratic neglect. For the freedom we celebrate is not the freedom to starve, or the freedom to languish in a long starless night of the soul. This, at least, is something that should be beyond debate.

– President Ronald Reagan, 1992

 

The Latest

A new report from the United Nations and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has found traces of nerve agents in facilities that Syria never disclosed as being part of its chemical weapons program. These findings, the report says, “indicate potentially undeclared chemical weapons-related activities” on the part of Assad, despite a 2013 plan from the United States and...
On August 24, 1991, Ukraine declared independence from the Soviet Union following a referendum that received 90 percent support. Twenty-five years later, the country is still struggling to escape the shadow of its neighbor.  Russia now controls Crimea and is increasing its military presence there. Moscow supports separatist forces in a conflict that has already cost 10,000 lives. In recent...
August 24, 2016 | Bulletin | Europe | Evan Moore
Russia’s recent use of an Iranian airbase to bomb targets in Syria reflects a burgeoning strategic partnership rooted in shared regional objectives. Though Tehran terminated the arrangement today likely due to domestic perceptions that it rendered the Islamist regime a subordinate of Moscow, the episode demonstrates that both countries, working in tandem, seek to undermine U.S. interests and...
August 22, 2016 | Bulletin | Tzvi Kahn
This month, Russia has dramatically increased its military presence in Crimea and along its border with Ukraine. On August 10, Vladimir Putin denounced Kyiv for an alleged campaign of infiltration and sabotage. The Kremlin may simply want to arouse the nationalism of Russian voters ahead of parliamentary elections next month, or it may have a more sinister purpose in mind. No matter what, Russia’...
August 17, 2016 | Europe
Tensions between Iran and Bahrain are rising. Over the past year, Tehran not only has repeatedly threatened to overthrow the Gulf island state, a key American ally that hosts the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet, but also continued to support terrorist proxies seeking the Sunni monarchy’s ouster. At the same time, Manama’s repression of the Shiite majority has persisted, exacerbating the country’s...
August 15, 2016 | Bulletin | Middle East | Tzvi Kahn
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August 10, 2016 | James Kirchick
The Washington Post reports that “President Obama has decided to seek a new United Nations Security Council resolution that would call for an end to nuclear testing.” Going to the Security Council could represent a deliberate effort to bypass the Senate, which rejected the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) in 1999. Despite Obama’s adamant support for CTBT, senior officials have...
August 8, 2016 | Bulletin | David Adesnik | Defense
Yesterday, The Wall Street Journal confirmed what observers have long suspected: In January, the Obama administration paid Iran a $400 million ransom to secure the release of American hostages. On the same day as the prisoners’ departure from the country, an unmarked U.S. cargo plane carrying stacks of euros, Swiss francs, and other foreign currencies landed in Tehran — funds the Islamist regime...
August 4, 2016 | Bulletin | Tzvi Kahn
In "Congress was right: The Iran deal is a travesty — and Obama is to blame," Salon's Carrie Sheffield writes:Tzvi Kahn, senior policy analyst at the Foreign Policy Initiative, also pointed out that what happens in Tehran doesn’t stay in Tehran. The ransom not only incentivizes Iran to take more Americans hostage, but it also effectively declared open season on Americans for every rogue regime...
August 4, 2016 | Middle East | Tzvi Kahn
President Obama will visit the Pentagon tomorrow for an update on the war against the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL). Following the Orlando attack in June, the President insisted, “We are making significant progress…ISIL is under more pressure than ever before.” Yet two days later, CIA Director John Brennan told Congress that “our efforts have not reduced the group's terrorism...

Mission Statement

The Foreign Policy Initiative seeks to promote an active U.S. foreign policy committed to robust support for democratic allies, human rights, a strong American military equipped to meet the challenges of the 21st century, and strengthening America’s global economic competitiveness.
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