Colombia’s President Ivan Duque met with President Trump at the White House last week, and at the top of their agenda was Venezuela. Colombia has played a critical role in managing the regional migration crisis, taking in more than 1.7 million Venezuelan refugees—more than a third of the 4.5 million who have fled the country in recent years following political upheaval and economic collapse.
Despite a new vaccine, the Ebola outbreak in the DRC has escalated into the second most deadly Ebola outbreak in history and crossed the border into neighboring Uganda, in part because conflict and violence are preventing an effective response. On July 17th, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
Around the world, Pride celebrations are recognizing the enormous strides for human rights of LGBTQ individuals. However, despite improvements in a number of countries, many LGBTQ individuals face significant hurdles to living openly and without fear. I spoke with former Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) about the transformation she’s seen in the United States, and the impact our domestic shift has had on the global movement for equality.
The Memorial Day congressional recess was upon us— a time to reflect and remember the men and women who have served our country and made the ultimate sacrifice to keep America safe – and we thought, what better time to travel the country to talk about how and why what happens overseas affects us here at home. So, we packed our bags and took to the skies, landing first in Phoenix, Arizona.
In recent weeks, our nation’s top national security experts – the military leaders of America’s combatant commands – briefed Congress on the national security threats facing the United States. While the challenges of great power competition from China and Russia were central to their testimonies, they also highlighted threats that require investing in development and diplomacy to keep America safe by addressing the drivers of extremism and instability, building allies and partner capacity, and promoting American values and diplomatic solutions to conflict.
1992 was the “Year of the Woman.” America saw a record number of women elected to 106th U.S. Congress. One of those new members was Marjorie Margolies, the first woman elected to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives from the commonwealth of Pennsylvania in her own right. I spoke with Congresswoman Margolies— who founded nonprofit Women’s Campaign International after serving in Washington— about the implications of this new era in women’s empowerment, not only for the United States, but for communities around the world.
There’s new hope this week for the tens of millions of trafficked and enslaved persons around the world as new bipartisan legislation has been signed into law in an effort to fight sex and labor trafficking both here at home and abroad. The Frederick Douglass Trafficking Victims Prevention and Protection Reauthorization Act, championed by Representatives Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Karen Bass (D-CA) and signed by President Trump on Tuesday, is designed to further the U.S. fight against modern slavery.
The newly-minted 116th Congress boasts the youngest freshman class in history. And as a record number of millennial lawmakers have taken their seats in Washington for the first time this month, a question arises: where will this new generation of lawmakers choose to focus their attention? These members of Congress may have just begun calling their votes, but new information suggests that how they prioritize American leadership on the world stage could be quite different from some of their elder peers. A recent study sheds light on the foreign policy interests of younger Americans.
As the partial government shutdown extends into its third week, federal agencies – including the State Department and USAID – are feeling the very real effects of the furloughs. And with the consequences of a prolonged shutdown still unclear, Ambassador Karl Hofmann, former U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Togo and a career diplomat, explains how the ongoing shutdown is impacting America’s diplomatic and development capabilities right now.
With time running out for Congress to meet a midnight funding deadline, the possibility of a partial government shutdown looms large. And though many in Washington are holding out hope for a last-minute deal to keep much of the government – including the State Department and USAID – open, it’s worth taking a look at how a shutdown would impact America’s diplomatic and development programs overseas.