DAWN celebrates its first year of achievements and growth.
My friend Jamal Khashoggi knew this. That's why a few months before his brutal state-sponsored murder, he founded Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN)—an organization dedicated to making our vision of a MENA region led by democratic, rights-respecting governments a reality.
Through rigorous research and analysis, relentless media outreach targeted advocacy with policymakers, and convenings of leading human rights and foreign policy experts, DAWN challenges conventional wisdom about the MENA region and the U.S. role in it, rallies support for policies that uphold rather than hinder human rights, and leads the brainstorming of new solutions to long-standing regional problems. Our online journal, Democracy in Exile, provides a platform through which MENA exile and activist voices can not only speak freely, but be heard by those in power. And our signature research projects document emblematic cases of unjust prosecutions in the region; expose and pursue accountability for the government officials who perpetrate violations; and target the U.S.-based lobbyists paid to keep U.S. support flowing to abusive regional governments.
DAWN knows that achieving our objectives won't be easy. We are up against the most powerful lobbying interests in the world: the American defense industry and the abusive regional governments themselves. We also face an uphill battle with the U.S. government, which has long provided political and military support to some of the most repressive governments in the region.