It has been an encouraging year for our partnership with Africa. Alongside our African partners, we have made significant progress advancing democracy, peace, and prosperity throughout the continent, though challenges, of course, remain.
Past presidents have tried to use "soft power" strategies to bolster the United States' cultural appeal abroad and lend moral weight to the country's standing as the free world's leading alternative to communist or authoritarian systems. Such tactics are not a substitute for military and economic "hard power," foreign affairs analysts said, but can help shape global perceptions of the United States and its motives.
The US must return to a policy that prioritises providing both moral and material support for Cuba’s dissidents and human rights activists. Funding for Cuba democracy programmes was redirected by the Obama administration to other activities on the island. [...] Human rights in Cuba must also be reprioritised at the United Nations, other international forums, and in US public diplomacy campaigns.
For much of the past two decades, progressive foreign policy has been defined by what it is against—[...] But it is much less clear what a progressive foreign policy stands for, and what it would look like in practice. It is especially important to try to define one now, after the election of Donald Trump.
Aside from reunification of the Korean peninsula, if denuclearization in North Korea is to be the central goal, how can one possibly achieve it? What could bring the North Korean regime to its knees and to the negotiating table? [...] for the ears of one pivotal or sitting on the panel of speakers if things continue as they are. That audience, of course, is the 24 million North Korean citizens still in the country.
Negotiations need to be proactive, intensive and include concrete, partial and measureable propositions in two or three months maximum. “Large sets of measures” shouldn’t be negotiated because they will only further root the positions of both parties. Transparency is a necessary condition for drawing concrete agreements which are fulfilled with a public declaration made by both parties about what they agree on and what they are forced to do, and when.
“Upholding human rights is in the interest of all. Respect for human rights advances well-being for every individual, stability for every society, and harmony for our interconnected world,” U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said.