B U L L E T I N

Happy New Year!

1. New Year Message - A purposeful life – Huffington post
2. A Note about Sean Hannity, Stuart Varney and Fox News –request
3. Note about Bridgette Gabriel’s comment on Fox News – upon request
4. American Muslims are proud of taking the right step - Link
5. Moderate Muslims Speak out? Link

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Religion and the Making of U.S. Foreign Policy

The Chicago Council released its task force report, Engaging Religious Communities Abroad: A New Imperative for U.S. Foreign Policy, on February 23, 2010, in Washington D.C. at Georgetown University.

Religion Task ForceThe task force cochairs discussed report findings and recommendations at a media breakfast and a lunchtime public release. E.J. Dionne, Washington Post columnist and professor at Georgetown University; and Afeefa Syeed, senior culture and development advisor, Asia and Middle East Bureaus, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), provided commentary on the report during the public program.

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs convened a task force of thirty-two experts and stakeholders – former government officials, religious leaders, heads of international organizations, and scholars – to bring a diverse perspective to the debate over how to successfully engage religion on an international level.

Religious communities are central players in the counterinsurgency war in Afghanistan, development assistance, the promotion of human rights, stewardship of the environment, and the pursuit of peace in troubled parts of the world. The success of American diplomacy in the next decade will be measured in no small part by its ability to connect with the hundreds of millions of people throughout the world whose identity is defined by religion.

President Obama's historic speech in Cairo on June 4, 2009, with its promise to engage with Muslim communities, was an important step in the right direction. The report of this task force takes the next step in developing a strategy to engage religious communities of all faiths in addressing foreign policy challenges.

Generous support from the Henry Luce Foundation and the Carnegie Corporation of New York has made this Task Force possible.

For online resources related to the report and to religion and U.S. foreign policy, visit Georgetown University's Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs.

MEDIA COVERAGE:

American foreign policy's God gap
David Waters, "On Faith" blog, Washington Post
February 23, 2010

US can benefit by understanding religion's role worldwide, report says
Dennis Sadowski, Catholic News Service
February 23, 2010

Should religion be part of foreign policy? Uncompromising Western Secularism
Michael Stone, Portland Progressive Examiner
February 23, 2010

'God gap' impedes U.S. foreign policy,
task force says

David Waters, Washington Post
February 24, 2010

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