Coalition Urges U.S. to Spend More on Global Democracy | Freedom House

Coalition Urges U.S. to Spend More on Global Democracy

New York

Together with a broad coalition of individuals affiliated with non-governmental organizations and think tanks, Freedom House today appealed to US Secretary of State Colin Powell and key Members of Congress to consider increasing financial resources for democracy building worldwide.

In a letter to Members of Congress and Secretary Powell, the 52 signatories requested that the United States increase its funding for democracy and human rights programming to at least $1 billion, from its current level of $700 million.

"In the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, there is widespread determination to redouble our efforts to strengthen democratic institutions, processes and values, and respect for rule of law and human rights," the letter states. "Substantially increased funding is essential not only in critical regions such as the Middle East, South and Central Asia but elsewhere across the world, where civil society has taken up the democratic challenge and/or where nascent democratic regimes remain fragile."

The letter emphasizes the nexis between political extremists and non-democratic regimes. Democratic development and human rights protections, new conditions applied by the Bush Administration in its foreign aid programs, can address fundamental threats to national and global security.

"Any effective long-term strategy to combat terrorism and other extremist violence must place democratic governance, accountability, transparency, rule of law, human rights, a robust civil society, civic education and regular competitive elections at its core," the letter states.

The signatories:

Mort Abramowitz, Board Member, International Crisis Group
David Anable, President, International Center for Journalists
Ned Bandler, Vice-Chairman, Freedom House
Kurt Bassuener, Co-Director, Democratization Policy Institute
Nina Bang-Jensen, Executive Director, Coalition for International Justice
Bette Bao Lord, Chairman Emeritus, Freedom House
Joel Barkan, Professor, Iowa State and Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center
Susan Blaustein, Coalition for International Justice
Zbigniew Brzezinski, Board Member, Freedom House
Daniel Brumberg, Georgetown University
Thomas Carothers, Vice President for Studies, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Robert Chase, Vice President, World Learning
Jim Denton
Larry Diamond, Professor, Hoover Institute, Stanford University
Anthony Garrett, Vice President for Policy and Development, Internews Network
Morton H. Halperin, President, Open Society Policy Center
John Heffernan, Board Member, Coalition for International Justice
James Hooper, Managing Director, Public International Law and Policy Group
Scott Horton, President, International League for Human Rights
Todd Howland, Director, Center for Human Rights of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial
Robert Hunter, Chairman, Council for a Community of Democracies
Dennis Jett, Dean of the International Center, University of Florida
Douglas Johnson, Executive Director, Center for Victims of Torture
Harry Kamberis, Executive Director, American Center for International Labor Solidarity
Max Kampelman, Chairman Emeritus, Freedom House
Adrian Karatnycky, President, Freedom House
Jeane J. Kirkpatrick, Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations
Stephan Klingelhofer, President, International Center for Not-for-Profit Law
Tony Lake, Former National Security Advisor
Tom Malinowski, Washington Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch
Jay Mazur, Board Member, Freedom House
Edward McMahon, Director, Center in Democratic Performance, Binghamton University
Gay McDougall, Executive Director, International Human Rights Law Group
Tom Melia, Georgetown University
Diana Negroponte, Board Member, Freedom House
Sarah Newhall, President and CEO, PACT
John Norton Moore, Board Member, Freedom House
Joe Onek
P.J. O'Rourke, Board Member, Freedom House
Mark Palmer, Former Ambassador to Hungary
Mark G. Pomar, President, IREX
Walt Raymond, President, Council for a Community of Democracies
Bill Richardson, Chairman, Freedom House
Stephan Rickard, Director, The Nuremberg Legacy Project
Leonard Rubenstein, Executive Director, Physicians for Human Rights
Eric Schwartz
David Tolbert, Executive Director, American Bar Association CEELI
Nicolas van de Walle, Professor of Political Science, Michigan State University
Jennifer Windsor, Executive Director, Freedom House
Eric Witte, Co-Director, Democratization Policy Institute
Kenneth Wollack, President, National Democratic Institute
David Yang, Institute for Global Democracy

Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

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