Hawks and Doves: Building Bridges Across the American Divide
BY ARAM HAMPARIAN
ANCA Executive Director
Did you know that the ANCA advances issues of special concern to Armenian Americans by engaging with elected officials, decision-makers, interest groups, and concerned citizens across the American political and policy landscape – left to right, hawks and doves, Democrats and Republican?
Here are some examples of how the ANCA, amid all the divisiveness of modern American civic life – finds common ground with a remarkably diverse set of stakeholders on our core Armenian American foreign policy priorities, freedom for Artsakh, justice for the Armenian Genocide, and stronger U.S.-Armenia relations.
- Foreign policy hawks (who prioritize hard power): Enforcing U.S. sanctions against Turkey over its increasingly anti-American conduct.
- Foreign policy doves (who prioritize diplomacy): Supporting the pro-dialogue U.S.-Artsakh Travel and Communication Resolution.
- Genocide and atrocities prevention community (lead by the FCNL/Quakers): Adopting the Elie Wiesel Genocide and Atrocities Prevention Act.
- Environmental movement: Advancing the Haiti and Armenia Reforestation Act to help these two nations restore their historic levels of forest cover.
- IT innovators and educators: Promoting a Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math education MCC grant for Armenia’s public schools.
- Business community: Promoting increased U.S.-Armenia trade and investment, via a new Double Tax Treaty, TIFA, Social Security Agreement, and other accords.
- Anti-mine movement: Appropriating funds for HALO Trust’s life-saving demining and mine-education work in the Artsakh Republic.
- International development community: Securing U.S. humanitarian, technical, and democracy aid to Armenia and Artsakh (to date, over $2.5 billion).
- Arms control community: Limiting reckless U.S. weapons sales and transfers to the Turkish and Azerbaijani militaries.
- Conflict-resolution community: Deploying Royce-Engel gunfire locators and additional observers along the Artsakh-Azerbaijan line of contact.
- Advocates for democratic self-determination: Securing state level recognition of Artsakh by California, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, and Rhode Island.
- Human rights advocates: Promoting H.Res.537 and other legislation imposing human rights-based economic sanctions on Azerbaijan and Turkey.
- Holocaust and Genocide educators: Teaching the Armenian Genocide in California, Michigan, New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Georgia, Kansas, Minnesota, New Jersey, Ohio, Arizona, Texas, Virginia, Illinois, and other states.
- International religious freedom movement: Supporting “Return of Churches” legislation, the freedom of Pastor Andrew Brunson, and the rights of Middle East Christians and other religious communities.
- Pro-peacekeeping groups: Supporting Armenia’s participation in U.S./NATO-led peacekeeping operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Kosovo, and Mali.
- Tourism and commercial aviation interests: Promoting economically viable non-stop Los Angeles-Yerevan commercial and cargo flights.
- American cultural institutions: Sponsoring the Smithsonian Folklife Festival’s Armenia exhibit on the National Mall (including screenings of The Promise and Intent to Destroy).
- Pentagon and the U.S. defense community: Supporting U.S. military aid and military-to-military cooperation with Armenia, including via the Kansas National Guard.
- Pro-Hellenic legislators and leaders: Ending Turkey’s occupation of Cyprus as part of a broader effort to curb its aggressive posture toward Armenia, Greece, Cyprus and other regional states.
- Assyrian/Chaldean/Syriac community: Helping Armenia serve as a safe haven for Christians and other religious minorities fleeing regional violence and unrest.
- Pro-Kurdish community: Defending the rights, interests, and aspirations of persecuted ethnic and religious minorities in Turkey.
- U.S. industry and manufacturers: Challenging Turkey’s undeserved preferential treatment of exports to the United States.
- Nuclear disarmament community: Seeking the redeployment of U.S. nuclear weapons currently stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base.
- Law enforcement: Pressing for the extradition of Erdogan bodyguards charged with assaulting peaceful U.S. protesters at Sheridan Circle in May of 2017.
- College students and recent graduates – Helping young Armenian Americans start public policy, political, media, and government careers in Washington.
On these issues, and many others, the ANCA constantly leverages coalitions, cooperating with a divers array of stakeholders.
If you have ideas for how we can better engage with any of these interests, or – even better – suggestions about how we might undertake new cooperation with any other groups, please drop us a note at email@example.com or share your recommendations on your favorite social media platforms.
For a full review of the ANCA’s strategic priorities, record of results, and current advocacy objectives, visit www.anca.org/anca360pdf.
Link: Hawks and Doves: Building Bridges Across the American Divide