How Best Can the U.S. Engage Civil Society To Strengthen Democracy?

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
July 2, 2010
People Are Reflected in the Sunglasses of a Man in London

On July 3, 2010, Secretary Clinton travels to Krakow to participate in the 10th Anniversary of the Community of Democracies and deliver remarks at this celebration that brings together about 75 governments and representatives of civil society. In her speech, Secretary Clinton will explore ways in which civil society is key to a broad notion of democracy and address challenges that human rights and advocacy groups face around the world. Secretary Clinton's visit underscores the Obama Administration's commitment to democracy promotion and principled engagement.

How best can the United States engage civil society to strengthen democracy?

Comments

Comments

Alaa B.
|
Egypt
July 3, 2010

Alaa B. in Egypt writes:

In Cairo, gave a President Obama's speech from Cairo University, said that the United States often been selective in supporting countries in order to democratization, is actually the United States still selective in its support for democracy around the world, what about the position of the United States of America, in a question of human rights in Egypt?

John P.
|
Florida, USA
July 3, 2010

John P. in Florida writes:

Secretary Clinton, we could begin by unequivocally opposing coups that depose democratically elected leaders and refuse to acknowledge any illigitimate government elected under such a coup.

We cannot at the same time accept and legitimize a coup in Honduras, then say that we have a "commitment to democracy promotion and principled engagement."

BV
|
Tennessee, USA
July 3, 2010

B.V. in Tennessee writes:

Education

palgye
|
South Korea
July 3, 2010

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Dear to,

Lives, the economy again, I figured I'd stop to the revival of democracy again. To rescue this economy back of your new layer occurs, suggesting a new theory and ideas of ordinary citizens are thought to lead to a new world. Although not revolutionary, while providing new ways of thinking to think you were going to push.

Thank You.

but,
Immigration Reform is, Is starting.
and,
I think the minimum requirements. Please believe me, I pray to God to think is applying.

OysterCracker
|
United States
July 3, 2010

O.C. in U.S.A. writes:

How does that saying go again? You can catch more bees with honey than with bitterness?

I think my idea of America becoming a massive educational complex will work. Go to Afghanistan and ask? Who wants to be a doctor?

A lot of people will raise their hand and then you say. Come here tomorrow and we will get you started. You then implement a very interesting, rigorous hands-on doctor course with potential to be educated in surgery schools and colleges in America and Europe. Do not dash people's dream, they can eventually wash out later but by then you steer them towards a more acceptable career path.

If everyone can become whatever they dreamed of with America's help then no one will have a need to kill the American infidel. The choice is this. Come over to our side and the sky's the limit or waste your life in a Madrassa and get killed. When people are busy improving their lives they don't want to fight other people's wars. America needs to give Afghani's what they really want and need. Get everyone engaged in their interests and no one will show up for war.

OysterCracker
|
United States
July 3, 2010

O.C. in U.S.A. writes:

@ Palgye, Everyday your english is improving. Keep up the good work!

palgye
|
South Korea
July 4, 2010

Palgye in South Korea writes:

i agrees, the that

Alaa B.
|
Egypt
July 4, 2010

Alaa B. in Egypt writes:

Ms. Scobey - U.S. Ambassador in Cairo - said early today about the corruption deal - bribes Mercedes - announced in the whole world except Egypt, she does not know any thing about it !!!, What does she means by this talk, she hurt the credibility of the United States in killing, and became all U.S. policy with the Arab and Islamic states on line, the most important thing was Obama persuaded the audience in Cairo, that American democracy often been selective, promising to change that, Obama change and hope, make the hearts of audiences in Cairo the Islamic world which were set on, Now, through these statements, she has made sure that all those conversations allegedly, only just interviews, not policy and approaches, and even put the credibility of the administration were at stake, the logical conclusion is that the U.S. government protects corruption in Egypt and supported the dictatorial regimes, and became the credibility of the United States are all on the line and so they are not a new page US-Islamic relations, but page end , the reward for the spirit of militancy for Ben Laden & Qaعeda in Afghanistan, Pakistan and all the Middle east.

W.B.
|
Tennessee, USA
July 5, 2010

W.B. in Tennessee writes:

With civil society being a sphere of influence that exists separate from any government, answering the question would be best based on a country by country basis. Although one might argue that we have a global civil society, it is more rational and reasonable to engage civil societies within the governmental realms in which they exist and operate. There you find the will of the people; there you find the institutions that they have created or seek to create, outside of their government, in order to achieve personal growth and development so as to eventually influence their own governments. We might look to see which governmental spheres lack civil societies; usually where basic human rights are absent.
I feel the U.S. should focus on so-called civil societies that deny women not just basic civil rights, but human rights and seek to establish parity in education in these places. This will help advance those countries' notions of civil society and how they interact with others on the global stage.

OysterCracker
|
United States
July 5, 2010

O.C. in the U.S.A. writes:

We can talk about democracy and human values until the cows come home but women in the U.S.A still make less money than men for equal work. That's an undeniable reality! When will we match our actions with our rhetoric?

Kenneth T.
|
Canada
July 6, 2010

Kenneth T.T. in Canada writes:

The U.S. is in no position to teach the world about DEMOCRACY, because at its very birth, it declared itself to be a REPUBLIC, and not a DEMOCRACY.

Just do some research to get at facts, and it is facts that will bear out what I am saying to be true.

Yes! Thomas Paine had hoped to help create a Democracy out of the American Colonies, but that was never to be. Read Common Sense or the Rights of Man by Thomas Paine to get a better vision of what True Democracy is all about. You in the U.S. do not possess it now, nor did you ever possess it.

Throughout your history, you have used aggression to advance you territory by atrmed force, no less than France or Britain, and at some points can be compared to the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the Gross Deutschland of Adolf Hitler.

The joke about the U.S. to me is your pseudo patriotism which at times reminds me of the Nationalism of Nazi Germany replete with slogans.

Look around you and see the devastation that you have wreaked worldwise, and ask yourself did we the U.S. do this to humanity?

Someone had to tell you the American people the truth, because your own politicians would never be honest enough to tell it to you.

Kenneth T.
|
Canada
July 6, 2010

Kenneth T.T. in Canada writes:

South Ossetia and Abkhazia are as sovereign as Kosovo. Remember your aggression against the sovereign nation of Serbia helped create Kosovo. If the break-up of the territory of a sovereign nation like Serbia is acceptable to the U.S. as in the case of Kosovo,then I would also agree that the break-up of the very United States of America is equally valid.

Flavius
|
Virginia, USA
July 6, 2010

Flavius in Virginia writes:

Yes. Kenneth knows why the Fifth Mountain Division is stationed in Ft. Drum, New York. All this training in Afghanistan will serve it well when we seize Toronto and Ottowa. And Quebec will finally be free!

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 7, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Flavius Maximus, you never cease to wave the sword of wit about, and mostly at my expense...but I think we can put our common differences aside for the moment in the interests of best serving the historical record which has been so blatently subject to revisionism by our Canadian friend.

As to our intent, I submit for the record we had our chance to clean the continent of British colonialism round about 1814 or so, with some help from the French, and so while we may retain the capacity to clear Canada of any attitudes of the likes of Kenneth's, I personally don't believe it to require invasion and occupation, do you?

If there was an ultimate "non-starter" that would be it I think.

What Kenneth needs to remember is that should my fair state of New Mexico declare itself a separate nation from the good old US of A (not including all the existing soveriegn territories held by various native American peoples), we'd be the world's leading nuclear power-period, hands down-Russia included, and America would be sans its only bomb factory.

With about 2000 nuclear warheads stored in the Manzanos, Sandia Labs, Kirtland AFB, LANL and all the scientists, the USA would no longer be a "hyper power", "super power" but on par with today's UK in strike capability, and Kenneth would do well to be careful what he wishes for.
Because if that ever becomes the case, I'd be sorely tempted to recomend my governor declare our friend Kenneth a "national security threat" and demand he be extridited to face ridicule, up front and in person or if that is refused by the Canadian Gov...to declare war on Canada for harboring an idiot.

I think that about covers it, would you like to add anything for the record?

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 7, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Back to the topic of the week, I've already posted my recomendations for engaging civil society, and you can start with having an ongoing dialogue with the various Iranian/American groups here in the US with family inside Iran; who are trying their best to breath life into people's aspirations for freedom, without a crash-cart to render emergency assistance and few resources.

Now if you want that patient to be declared "D.O.A." just ignore the national asset in our midst.

And if you do, ultimately one has to decide whether the "pressure track" includes the elements of regime replacement therapy as the end result of the Iranian Gov.'s failure to comply with UN decisions.

What right do we have to proceed in this manner?

The same right future generations not yet present have to a world worth living in.

Sans terrorism. Keep that in mind as one proceeds to make it so.

Flavius
|
Virginia, USA
July 8, 2010

Flavius in Virginia writes:

First, thank you for the compliment, Eric. And I am delighted to join you in defending the historical record.

I don't really have anything to add except that it is my understanding that a minority of Canadian citizenry believes that the location of the Fifth Mountain just across the border at Ft. Drum is not an "accident."

I mentioned this because I thought that Kenneth might be a "fellow traveler" with those that hold that the United States is just waiting for the right moment to fulfill its manifest destiny.

The funny thing is, he is right on one point, though only partly. We are a constitutional republic, not a democracy (at least not in the pure sense). The word democracy is thrown around so much that it has lost much of its meaning. Pure democracy is... a mess. Ask any ancient Athenian.

It bothers me when we refer to ourselves as a "democracy." After all, what does it say in the Pledge? "And to the republic for which it stands." As everyone knows, I'm a little freaky about words and the way that they're used. So we are "democratic" but our system of government is a "republic." Everybody got that? Good!

I'm also ready to challenge some common perceptions among Americans that we have never done and can do no wrong. But to compare us to Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union under Stalin is, well, stupid. Inane. Moronic. Just plain wrong.

I'll stroll over to the edge of the ring and tag Eric, if the referee doesn't think my pin made it to three.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 8, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

I haven't talked with any ancient Athenians lately, but as messy as this republic gets, it must be a democracy, no?

Just judging by the symtomology of the process.

Worst form of government ever invented by man, save all other forms...

Churchill was right, it is worth all the trouble we get into because of it.

You know, I think it's called Fort Drum for a reason, and not because it is a puppy farm.

Anyone who advocates the breakup of our union is not paranoid about us invading Canada anytime soon, but rather has the insane notion that that will somehow have a positive effect on Canada's power and influence globally.

Instead it would have exactly the opposite effect. And if that ever happens, I believe the circumstances that created it would involve an invasion of Canada by hundreds of thousands of American refugees.

Because it would take a disaster on the scale of nuclear war to initiate, and the decapitation of government and the breakdown of C.O.G.(continuity of government) planning.

In other words, even if al-quaida detonated a ten kiloton nuke just outside the capital building in DC, The American government has not only planned for the continuity of government, but to ensure that democracy as an institution and national treasure is preserved as well as the functioning of government.

Notice both the Sec of State and VP were out of country during the Fouth of July weekend, and while they had public reason to be, the fact is that they were, just in case anyone tried to get cute with us over the holiday.

Standard procedure in a post 9/11 world.

Flavius
|
Virginia, USA
July 8, 2010

Flavius in Virginia writes:

If the VP and Her Worship were out of the country over the Fourth to protect the succession, monkeys will fly out of my nether regions.

You are too paranoid my friend. That's such a long stretch you must be Mr. Fantastic.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 8, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@Flavius,

If you wish me to treat what you say with respect and an open mind you might try doing the same.

This personal BS is going to end now, and if you don't cease and desist I'm sure the moderator can sort you out.

In fact, at this point I insist that they do so if they truly value my imput on this blog as they say they "love" my participation here.

I don't think you are going to be earning any brownie points by insulting the Sec. of State either.

Now, when you get off work, take in a movie;

veevr.com/videos/kKM3K7r2

We'll discus your digestive problems later.

Flavius
|
Virginia, USA
July 9, 2010

Flavius in Virginia writes:

Guffaw!

OysterCracker
|
United States
July 9, 2010

O.C. in the U.S.A. writes:

If security is a national foreign policy and most people in the world want access to education to improve their lives then why isn't the USA providinhg it on a grand scale? I know we're broke but surely a whole educational network could be established on a shoestring budget through a combination of classes, computer networks etc. Everyone would welcome learning something. Getting people quickly into jobs and training should be priority one in the fight against extremist ideology. As people participate, they might say, "Hey, this isn't so bad it's actually fun!" This is how to win people over to your side.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
July 10, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

"Attitude is everything." -EJ

Need proof?

www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8fIl8UPfvg

Enjoy...I know I did.

This clip gets my nomination for inclusion in the next State Dept. sponsored democracy video challenge.

There's obviously more than one way to win hearts and minds...(chuckle).

OysterCracker
|
United States
July 10, 2010

O.C. in the U.S.A. writes:

The only people laughing at your video are the Zionists. The rest of the world weeps!

.

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