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From the WACA National Office 

Dear Colleagues and Friends:

Greetings from the nation's capital, where each passing week is more interesting than the last. 

We began with Monday's forced resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and moved to President Trump's breathtaking press conference yesterday. It is said that his scheduled Saturday rally in Florida will kickoff the 2020 presidential campaign. 

Below, please see two examples of what will be many frequent efforts by WACA to engage the Trump administration, members of Congress, policy experts, and thought leaders on the critical issues facing this country, our communities, and the world.     

A happy Friday and peaceful weekend to all of you,  

Bill Clifford
President and CEO
Invitation to President Trump for Key Address on Russia 

February 16, 2017

President Donald J. Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Trump:

I write to invite you to address the World Affairs Councils of America, the country's largest nonprofit nonpartisan grassroots organization dedicated to informing the American public about U.S. foreign policy and national security affairs. 

In your Inauguration Day speech, you proclaimed that the arrival of your administration signals that you are "transferring power from Washington, DC, and giving it back to the people.... To all Americans, in every city near and far, small and large, from mountain to mountain, from ocean to ocean, hear these words: you will never be ignored again." 

We, the World Affairs Councils of America, appreciate those words. We represent more than 90 member organizations nationwide. And the people, in small and large communities served by our Councils, want and need to hear from you. Specifically, we would like to understand your comprehensive policy toward Russia.
Now, as your administration enters its second month in office, we think the time is propitious for a major public address on this critical topic. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker, who has been supportive of you, this week warned that the Russia issue risks destabilizing your broader agenda on foreign affairs and domestic priorities like healthcare and tax policy. 

After attempts by the previous two administrations to reset relations with Russia foundered, the American public is keen to know how your approach - the rationale and policy details - would succeed in improving ties with an erstwhile rival power, whose leader you've expressed admiration for.

We would like your assessment of the damage from Russian violations of European security and international law over Ukraine (where fighting has picked up), with a view to defining clearly U.S. security goals in Central and Eastern Europe. The security questions include reports that Russia's military is developing a new missile in violation of the U.S.-Soviet Intermediate Nuclear Forces treaty negotiated by Presidents Reagan and Gorbachev.

While Americans support policies to destroy the Islamic State and eradicate terrorism, less clear is the notion of cooperating with President Putin toward those goals in Syria, where evidence is mounting of Russian bombing of civilians and a hospital in Aleppo.

The threat posed by Moscow's alleged interference in the democratic process in America and European democracies, through cyber operations and other means, calls for clear answers and a robust remedy for U.S. vulnerabilities.
The World Affairs Councils of America and any of our Councils from Portland, Maine to Hawaii, and from Alaska to Palm Beach, Florida, would be pleased to host you. Thank you for your consideration.


Bill Clifford
President and CEO
KNOW NOW Conference Call :
The U.S., Ukraine and Russia's Western Ambitions

The World Affairs Councils of America is pleased to present the KNOW NOW conference call series. These calls will feature global thought leaders hosted by WACA as well as local authorities in government, business, academia and cultural fields who are identified and moderated by local Councils, using our national conference call platform to bring local and national issues of global dimensions to our network.
WACA is pleased to feature Anne Applebaum, Professor in Practice at the London School of Economics Institute of Global Affairs, to discuss "The U.S., Ukraine and Russia's Western Ambitions"  on Tuesday, February 21, at 2 PM ET.

Anne Applebaum is a journalist and historian with a particular expertise in the history of communism and the experience of post-communist "democratization" in the Soviet Union and central Europe. At LSE's Institute of Global Affairs, she will run ARENA, a program on disinformation and 21st century propaganda, and build the Transformation Lab, a program focused on the political and economic transformation of individual countries. She writes a biweekly foreign affairs column for the Washington Post and is the author of several books, including Gulag: A History, which won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for non-fiction, and Iron Curtain, which won the 2013 Cundill Prize for Historical Literature and was nominated for a National Book Award. Applebaum is featured in a short 15-minute documentary about the Holodomor, the genocidal famine in Ukraine engineered by the USSR's Joseph Stalin. The call comes days before the first Hollywood-style feature film set during the Holodomor, Bitter Harvest , will be in theaters on Feb. 24.  ( Full bio ).

The World Affairs Councils of America 

1200 18th St., NW, Suite 902, Washington, DC 20036

Phone (202) 833-4557  Fax (202) 833-4555

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