Community of Democracies

A community of democracies is the commitment to strengthening and deepening democratic values and practices worldwide. At the Warsaw Conference in Poland in 2000, over 100 nations gathered to discuss the expansion of democratic values and integration of the world's democracies. At the close of the conference, participants signed the Warsaw Declaration; the signatories agreed "to respect and uphold...core democratic principles and practices" including free and fair elections, freedom of speech and expression, equal access to education, rule of law, and freedom of peaceful assembly. This conference resulted in the creation of the Council for a Community of Democracies, an organization dedicated to supporting ongoing efforts for increased cooperation among the world's democracies.

Many have spoke on the benefits of a community of democracies, including Ivo Daalder, Robert Kagan, and Sen. John McCain. Daadler and Kagan both argued that the best way for the United States to act internationally is through a consensus of the world's democracies. The world's democracies could provide important support for the efforts of the United States to solve some of the world's most pressing international problems. In their August 2007 column in the Washington Post, they suggested just that - a concert of democracies, where the world's democracies could meet and cooperate in dealing with the many global challenges they confront.

Sen. John McCain, encouraged by the prospect of global peace, called for a League of Democracies, an organization of like-minded countries working together in the cause for peace. Sen. McCain went on to say that this organization would be supplemental to the United Nations, acting as a body in which democratic nations can discuss problems and solutions on the basis of shared principles and a common vision of the future. Even before this idea became one of the hallmarks of his 2008 presidential campaign, Sen. McCain addressed the Hoover Institute in 2007, elaborating his idea of League of Democracies.

The Streit Council has supported the project for a Community of Democracies since its birth. Some of our members participated in initiating this process, long before it became known to the general public. We plan to continue being involved in it, adding to its unfolding our emphasis on the institutional aspect of inter-democracy unity. We recently have joined the Members of the Campaign for a UN Democracy Caucus in signing a letter urging the Convening Group of the Community of Democracies to lead the Democracy Caucus to work actively in the negotiations for a strong and effective Human Rights Group.

Recent work

Liberal democracy and the path to peace and security, Madeleine Albright and Medhi Jomaa, September 2017

Debate on the concept of a Community of Democracies

Democracies of the World, Unite by Ivo Daalder and James Lindsay, January 2007 (in support)

The Case for a League of Democracies by Robert Kagan, May 2008 (in support)

Minor League, Major Problems
by Charles A. Kupchan, November 2008 (opposed)

This mini-league of nations would cause only division by Shashi Tharoor, May 2008 (opposed)

A League of Their Own by James Lindsay, March 2009 (response to Kupchan)


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