What Did We Accomplish in 2004?
Promoting Peace & Security
Executive Vice President Don Kraus and Program Manager Harpinder Athwal are working closely with Senator Joe Lieberman (D-CT) and his staff in crafting a series of amendments to the State Department Authorization and the Defense Department Authorization bill to support greater regional and United Nations peace operations capacity.
Citizens for Global Solutions co-sponsored a series of events in Washington, D.C. in March to mark the 10th anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide, joining the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and the Embassy of Rwanda.
Don Kraus met with Assistant Secretary of Defense Joseph Collins about a U.S. initiated "Global Peace Operations Initiative" that was part of the Heads of States discussions at the recent G-8 meeting.
An op-ed by Harpinder Athwal and Amb. Dennis Kux (a new member of our Board of Directors) was published in January in the Christian Science Monitor following their recent trip through Afghanistan, Pakistan and India sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations.
In the House of Representatives we are lobbying for the creation of a UN Civilian Police Corps (HR 1414). "The International Rule of Law and Antiterrorism Act" is highlighted in a new report by the Congressional Research Service. In the Senate, we lobbied on S. 2127, legislation introduced by Richard Lugar (R-IN) designed to establish a U.S. Response Readiness Corps to "provide assistance in support of stabilization and reconstruction activities in foreign countries or regions that are in, or are in transition from, conflict or civil strife".
Promoting International Law and Justice
International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo appointed former U.S. federal prosecutor Christine Chung to head up the court's case against Ugandan warlords. We immediately responded with two press releases, resulting in press coverage quoting Vice President for Programs Heather Hamilton.
Program Manager Maggie Gardner recently delivered a briefing on our Victims Trust Fund Campaign to the international Board of Directors of the VTF. Board members include Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Dr. Oscar Arias Sanchez, and Her Majesty Queen Rania of Jordan, Tadeusz Mazowiecki, and Simone Veil.
In other VTF Campaign news, actor Mike Farrell – and member of the Citizens for Global Solutions Board of Advisors – sent out another appeal to his friends and colleagues in Hollywood asking them for additional support prior to our meeting with the VTF Board. His efforts resulted in additional gifts raised for the fund from the following artists: Harry Belafonte, E.L. Doctorow, Jamie Farr, Chevy Chase, Bonnie Franklin, Elliot Gould, Jackson Browne, Diane Baker, Hector Elizondo, Jill Clayburgh, Shelley Fabares, and more.
Citizens for Global Solutions sponsored a Senate briefing for Hill staffers and leaders in the NGO community on "War Crimes in Uganda: Seeking Peace through Accountability." Panelists included Susana Sa'Couto (Executive Director, War Crimes Research Office, Washington College of Law) and David Scheffer (former U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues). In March we engaged Rep. Tom Allen (D-ME) in a strategy session with the Washington Working Group on the International Criminal Court, which we co-chair.
In May Heather Hamilton participated in a featured debate at a conference in Stockholm, Sweden on the International Criminal Court. She had a vigorous debate about whether the US should join the ICC with a Pepperdine University law professor who argued the Bush Administration position. The conference was cosponsored by Amnesty International and the Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society.
Promoting Effective & Democratic International Institutions
In January Don Kraus delivered a talk at a special United Nations briefing at UN HQ. He was joined on a panel about Reforming the UN by Ambassador De Alba, Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN of Mexico; Paul Hoeffel, Chief of the UN NGO Section; and Steven Stedman, Research Director of the Secretary-General's "High Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change" -- aka, the UN Reform panel.
Citizens for Global Solutions joined as an organizational partner of the "United Nations and Global Security Initiative" being carried out by the UN Foundation, partnering with a number of other distinguished organizations in recognition of our promotional efforts of including information about the initiative in our last policy brief, as well as posting a link to www.un-globalsecurity.org from our own website.
We are currently working with the Stanley Foundation in promoting an excellent new radio program on the UN hosted by NPR's David Brancaccio.
Don Kraus worked with Senator Joseph Biden (D-DE) and his staff to introduce S.Con Res 83 supporting a UN Democracy Caucus. As a follow-up we also collected signatures on an organizational sign-on letter supporting the bill.
In January we released the report of a global democracy retreat that we co-hosted with Oxfam America, attended by NGO leaders around the world and addressed by Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs Kim Holmes.
Citizens for Global Solutions played a key role in rallying to support a successful amendment to the Senate Budget resolution that restored funding to the International Affairs Budget. Sponsored by Senators Lugar (R-IN) and Feinstein (D-CA), the amendment sought to restore $1.1 billion to the International Affairs Budget that had been cut earlier in Senate deliberations – a tremendous victory in a time of massive cuts.
In April, Heather Hamilton delivered the keynote address on "What Americans Really Think about U.S. Global Engagement" at a conference sponsored by the Drake University Center for Global Citizenship in Des Moines, Iowa.
In June, Don Kraus was quoted in a Washington Post article about President Bush’s nomination of John Danforth as UN Ambassador.
Promoting Environmental Protection
We are coordinating a bi-partisan coalition consisting of major environmental organizations and petroleum trade groups, as well as our more traditional allies who advocate a peaceful and multilateral foreign policy, in support of U.S. ratification of the Law of the Sea treaty. With assistance from the Better World Fund, we placed a Law of the Sea ad in "Roll Call" – the newspaper of Capitol Hill. As an added bonus, Rep. Tom Lantos (D-CA) referenced the ad during a House International Relations Committee hearing on the Law of the Sea treaty and had it formally noted in the "Congressional Record."
Because of the success of our first Internet fundraising campaign where we raised nearly $5,000 in the space of a few days, we were able to run ads in two newspapers in Tennessee– the home state of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN). We also spearheaded a campaign for organizations to send letters to President Bush requesting that he pressure Majority Leader Frist to bring the treaty to the Senate floor for a vote.
We continue to play a leading role on the steering committee of Earth Legacy, a collaboration of a diverse group of civil society organizations seeking to restore U.S. leadership in the protection of the global environment. Earth Legacy launched in June with a declaration calling for U.S. leadership on the global environment signed by leading environmental and foreign policy experts, including Citizens for Global Solutions President Emeritus John B. Anderson. E-Advocacy Manager Valerie Schrock also designed the beautiful site:www.EarthLegacy.org.
See what else we've done:
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+ CLICK HERE FOR 2005 ACCOMPLISHMENTS
+ CLICK HERE FOR MID-2004-2005 ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Updated February 10, 2006