Argument

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, March 21, 2016

To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook.  In an open letter, over a hundred leading experts urge the U.S. presidential candidates to put democracy and human rights at the center of their foreign policy platforms. Christopher Sabatini argues that President Obama is right to engage with Cuba ...

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To keep up with Democracy Lab in real time, follow us on Twitter and Facebook. 

In an open letter, over a hundred leading experts urge the U.S. presidential candidates to put democracy and human rights at the center of their foreign policy platforms.

Christopher Sabatini argues that President Obama is right to engage with Cuba — as long as he seizes this opportunity of this week’s trip to press the government on human rights.

Firat Demir insists that the Turkish government’s recent assault on democracy is also partly to blame for the spate of recent terrorist attacks.

Michael Meyer-Resende warns that talk of federalism in Syrian peace negotiations will do more harm than good.

Javier Corrales sees disturbing echoes of Latin American outsider presidents — many of whom became strongmen — in Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency.

Srdja Popovic and Raphael Mamoun explain how nonviolent tactics can be used to undermine the Islamic State.

And Christian Caryl argues that today’s political incumbents need to offer a fresh sense of conviction and zeal if they hope to challenge the rise of the populists.

And now for this week’s recommended reads:

As President Obama travels to Cuba, Carl Gershman explains in the Washington Post why international support for Cuban democracy is more urgent than ever. And PBS Newshour interviews Democracy Lab contributor Christopher Sabatini about what the president’s trip is likely to mean for both countries.

The New York Times editorial board takes Poland’s new government to task for its open defiance of the country’s highest court.

The Atlantic Council’s Melinda Haring and Alina Polyakova look at Crimea’s dim prospects after two years of Russian occupation.

In the Guardian, Nicolai Petro argues that Ukraine must recognize that its economic future depends on Russian investment.

Writing for LSE’s European Politics and Policy blog, Andrea Fumarola explains how electoral reform can help to safeguard democracy in Hungary.

For the Transnational Justice Institute, Lahpai Seng Raw reminds us of the huge challenges faced by Burma’s new civilian government.

The Economist reviews Rebooting India, a book in which Nandan Nielekani and Viral Shah tell the story of a technology-driven reform that is set to revolutionize governance in the country.

In the Intercept, Glenn Greenwald, Andrew Fishman, and David Miranda warn that the corruption of Brazil’s governing class is not limited to President Rousseff’s left-wing Workers Party.

In the photo, U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro review troops before bilateral meetings at the Palace of the Revolution March 21, 2016 in Havana, Cuba.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

 

Ilya Lozovsky is assistant editor of Democracy Lab. Prior to joining Foreign Policy, he worked as program officer for Eurasia at Freedom House, providing emergency support to human rights activists and organizations across that continent. @ichbinilya

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