DAWN celebrates its second year of achievements, advancements, and growth.
We are pleased to share this message from Executive Director Sarah Leah Whitson introducing DAWN's Annual Report for 2022.
Dear Friends and Supporters,
DAWN completed its second year of operation in 2022, marked by its progress as the leading advocate for reforming U.S. policies that support the worst governments in the Middle East and North Africa and holding accountable not just serial human rights abusers but also the U.S. lobbyists who aid and abet them. In seeking both enforcement and reform of U.S. laws that permit foreign influence in our government, we are working to preserve America's democracy as well.
DAWN's clear diagnosis of the failed U.S. approach to the region and unequivocal demands about what needs to change resonated in the media and among policymakers, broadening the parameters of debate and discussion among the foreign policy community. We are heartened by the expansion of support for our organization from donors and the public, both in the U.S. and from the region. We know we speak for the many when we—along with DAWN's renowned fellows and board members—assert and magnify the basic principles that the people of the MENA region deserve democracy and respect for their human rights—the essential ingredients for peace, freedom, equality, and justice.
DAWN also expanded its policy work this year, producing a series of analysis and recommendations to the U.S. government, some of which we were pleased to see adopted, including an FBI investigation into the murder of Shireen Abu Akleh by Israeli forces, and a Congressional inquiry into payments by Saudi Arabia to former Trump administration officials Jared Kushner and Steven Mnuchin. DAWN also focused a great deal of its advocacy on the U.S. foreign policy and human rights communities, seeking to reform our methodologies and update our collective approaches to the MENA region. In 2022, DAWN organized a second major symposium critically examining and urging an end to calls for "humanitarian military intervention" by rights groups.
Moreover, DAWN continued its efforts to demand justice for our slain founder, Jamal Khashoggi. While the Biden administration intervened in our lawsuit to provide immunity for Khashoggi's murderer, Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman, we secured a permanent memorial for Khashoggi, successfully renaming the street in front of the Saudi Embassy in Washington "Jamal Khashoggi Way." We succeeded in securing the introduction of legislation that will codify the Khashoggi Ban and support advocacy groups seeking to prevent and punish extraterritorial repression in our country.
Finally, DAWN's premier publication, Democracy in Exile, expanded its reach this year, not only centering the voices of MENA activists but spearheading discussions on the most pressing issues from the region, including the impacts of the Ukraine war and the Iran protests, and interviewing some of the sharpest analysts and activists of the region.
We are proud of all that we have accomplished this year, which I hope you will take some time to learn more about in this report. Let me take this moment to thank our board and our supporters for your help in building and strengthening our organization, but most of all, my colleagues, each of whom served as a tireless and dedicated champion for rights and freedom in their own right.
Sarah Leah Whitson