This report from Human Rights Watch released in January concludes that President Hamid Karzai’s government and its international backers have largely failed to meet the compact’s benchmarks on improving human rights and basic security. It says that the government and its international backers have made little progress in providing basic needs like security, food, electricity, water and health care, and says that the United States and the European Union should provide greater economic, political and military assistance, while President Karzai’s government should improve the rule of law and hold militias and warlords accountable for abuses.
This report from the US Institute for Peace (USIP) details the first meeting of the Liberia Working Group, in November 2006. The Group was convened to address the major topics in Liberia's peacebuilding efforts, with a view to maintaining international interest, support, and engagement in Liberia to ensure a durable peace following the election of a democratic government led by President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf in November 2005. This briefing highlights the central points of the meeting and panelists' recommendations for the way forward: participants lauded Liberia for its efforts to reform the security sector, the establishment of the truth and reconciliation commission, and strong support from the United States. On the other hand, they raised concerns about the incomplete disarmament process, persistent bias in the media, lagging legal reform, and the continuing fragility of the sub-region.
Joshua Kurlantzick discusses democracy's decline and his new book, Democracy in Retreat: The Revolt of the Middle Class and the Worldwide Decline of Representative Government in an interview with the Los Angeles Times.
Terra Lawson-Remer argues that three factors will determine whether the renewed national dialogue ignited by the Wall Street occupations will result in substantive changes that have a meaningful impact on peoples' lives.
Economic growth stimulated by small and medium-sized enterprises can foster stability in fragile states. Comprehensive approaches that offer entrepreneurs access to finance, markets, networks, and skills should be offered.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.