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Human Rights First

Revolvers: Blurred Lines Between Human Rights Organizations and the State Department

Jack Healey | Posted 07.02.2014 | World
Jack Healey

Helping is now big business. Human rights groups have become big industries with big salaries. While I do not believe activism is better with poorly paid staff, the focus should be on helping others rather than personal gain.

Legal Showdown: 6 Experts Destroy Obama's Drone Policy

Robert Greenwald | Posted 10.26.2013 | Politics
Robert Greenwald

If the administration has nothing to hide and insists that our drone policy is entirely legal, why not create an open and transparent process for the use of drones? It would bring the legal debate out of the shadows, a move that is desperately needed.

Silent Witness -- The U.S. Government and the Trial of Bahraini Human Rights Defender Abu Deeb

Brian Dooley | Posted 06.05.2013 | World
Brian Dooley

Washington has been relatively muted about the Bahrain crackdown. While the United States sent observers to the joint trial of human rights defenders Abu Deeb and Jalila al Salman, it has not publicly stated whether it thinks their trial met international standards.

On Aid to Egypt

Neil Hicks | Posted 05.14.2013 | World
Neil Hicks

The costs to the United States of failure to promote peaceful democratic transition in Egypt should not be underestimated. The uprising in Egypt, and in other countries of the region, has presented the U.S. commitment to promoting human rights and democracy around the world with a stern test.

Morsi's Illusory Power Grab

Neil Hicks | Posted 01.30.2013 | World
Neil Hicks

Assertions that Morsi exercises unprecedented powers in his current role as nominal head of the executive should be taken with a large grain of salt.

One Year Later, Bahrain Reform Remains Shallow Promise

Brian Dooley | Posted 01.20.2013 | World
Brian Dooley

The Bahrain government has concentrated on creating bureaucratic processes for implementation instead of producing real change that can be felt by those peacefully pressing for reform.

Free Expression Not a Catch Phrase

Brian Dooley | Posted 12.31.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

By stifling the possibility of legal street protests, the Bahraini regime has made more illegal protests a certainty. There isn't much left for those pressing for democratic reform.

Human Rights Priorities for the Next U.S. President

David J. Kramer | Posted 12.02.2012 | Politics
David J. Kramer

The United States should review its relations with all authoritarian regimes to give human rights greater attention. While it may cooperate with them on counter-terrorism and other shared interests, it cannot turn a blind eye to the abuses these regimes commit.

Derision on Prison Indecision

Brian Dooley | Posted 10.14.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

While time drags on without meaningful reform, the protests across Bahrain intensify, some of which have developed a violent edge. The regime needs to find something better than its current Ostrich Strategy if it's to convince anyone that it is serious about reform.

Five Things to Look for in the Egyptian Presidential Elections

Neil Hicks | Posted 07.22.2012 | World
Neil Hicks

Egyptians will go to the polls tomorrow to vote in their first-ever competitive presidential election. Whoever wins will have legitimacy in a contest in which tens of millions of voters will choose from a broad range of candidates.

Facebook: Before You Buy

Human Rights First | Posted 07.17.2012 | Business
Human Rights First

By Meg Roggensack and Marshall Thompson Business and Human Rights What investors should know ahead of Facebook's IPO. View PDF Version» Much of Fa...

Egypt's Presidential Elections: A Moment for the U.S. Government to Lead on Human Rights

Neil Hicks | Posted 07.09.2012 | World
Neil Hicks

The collapses of authoritarian regimes of the last 15 months should have taught U.S. policymakers one lesson: the old formula of tolerating and colluding with authoritarianism in return for (an often illusory) stability does not work.

ICE's Detention Reform Promises - A Second Look

Human Rights First | Posted 05.28.2012 | Politics
Human Rights First

By Ruthie Epstein Refugee Protection Program My drive back from Karnes County, Texas, to San Antonio, two weeks ago, was long and empty. Not long by ...

Don't Return to Business as Usual in Egypt: Link Foreign Aid to Democratic Progress in Egypt

Neil Hicks | Posted 05.18.2012 | World
Neil Hicks

Ignoring the human rights and democracy conditions that Congress has placed on U.S. foreign assistance to Egypt would be seen as the U.S. government giving its unconditional support to anti-democratic forces in Egypt.

Obama and Karzai Talk, but the Fate of 3000 U.S. Prisoners in Afghanistan Remains a Mystery

Daphne Eviatar | Posted 05.16.2012 | World
Daphne Eviatar

President Obama is surely negotiating U.S. troop withdrawal carefully so as to keep U.S. soldiers from facing unnecessary risks. He should take the same care with the lives of Afghans.

Scenes From a Bahraini "Courtroom"

Brian Dooley | Posted 05.16.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

There they sit, squeezed onto two benches in Bahrain's criminal court: the 20 medics who were tortured into making false confessions.

ICE Pledge on Immigration Detention Tested Today at Karnes Facility

Human Rights First | Posted 05.13.2012 | Politics
Human Rights First

Karnes County, I hope, will provide a new model for more appropriate detention conditions -- a model that will mean little if it is not just a first step in transforming all facilities where ICE holds immigrants.

Dear DHS: My Husband Is Not a Terrorist -- Can He Come Home?

Human Rights First | Posted 04.04.2012 | Impact
Human Rights First

When Arben's visa was denied, a staffer at one office told me that my only options were to divorce Arben or move to Kosovo. I don't think I should have to do either of those things. I married Arben for better or for worse. I take that vow seriously, and I want to make my life with him.

Was it Something I Said?

Brian Dooley | Posted 03.18.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

With delicious irony, the Government of Bahrain sent out a press release last week declaring that it "welcomes visits by all human rights organization...

Egyptian Elections: Five Reasons to Stick With the Process

Neil Hicks | Posted 02.01.2012 | World
Neil Hicks

Egypt's democratic transition faces two main threats: subversion by anti-democratic religious extremists; and obstruction by an authoritarian military junta loathe to yield power to civilian rule. Those who support continuing democratic progress in Egypt must oppose both.

U.S. Giving Undue Deference to Bassiouni Commission Report

Brian Dooley | Posted 01.23.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

The U.S. Government appears to have too many eggs in the Bassiouni basket. It's the standard the Bahraini Government wants to be judged by, and the U.S. should not so readily agree.

"Troll" Attacks on #Bahrain Tweets Show Depth of Government Attempts to Silence Dissent

Brian Dooley | Posted 01.17.2012 | World
Brian Dooley

As human rights abuses persist in Bahrain, human rights defenders on the ground there are forced to take their fight for political freedom to other mediums, including Twitter.

Al-Nashiri Case Will Highlight All That Is Wrong With Military Commissions

Human Rights First | Posted 01.03.2012 | Politics
Human Rights First

The first Guantanamo detainee case will yet again demonstrate that the military commissions are inherently flawed and that terror suspects should be tried in federal courts.

Activists Continue to Take Stand in Bahrain Despite Hostile Crackdown

Brian Dooley | Posted 12.20.2011 | World
Brian Dooley

Bahrainis who stand up publicly to promote human rights risk harassment and arrest. Human rights defenders remain in constant jeopardy from the Bahraini dictatorship. Despite those threats, they continue to document human rights abuses and work for political freedom.

Not Giving Egypt's Military Junta What It Wants

Neil Hicks | Posted 12.11.2011 | World
Neil Hicks

The quality of the U.S. relationship with Egypt will be determined by the progress Egypt makes towards democratic governance that protects and upholds the basic rights and freedoms of all of its people.