Hungary Visa Waivers and US Foreign Policy
4/7/2008 - American Hungarian Federation Raises Visa Waiver at America Abroad Media Town Hall Meeting: "Foreign Policy and the Presidential Election: America's Image in the World" (Washington, D.C.) The American Hungarian Federation attended a special town hall discussion, presented by WAMU 88.5, America Abroad Media, and The American Interest magazine, and senior foreign policy advisors from the presidential campaigns of Senators Hillary Clinton, John McCain, and Barack Obama. The participants discussed strategies for improving America’s standing abroad.
Foreign policy advisors from each of the presidential campaigns participated in the discussion: Richard Danzig, Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to Senator Barack Obama's presidential campaign; Lee Feinstein, National Security Director for Senator Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign; and John Lehman, Foreign and Defense Policy Advisor to Senator John McCain's presidential campaign.
The live event took place on Monday, April 7 and was subsequently broadcast on Thursday, April 9.
Frank Koszorus, Jr., Chairman of the Federation’s International Relations Committee, represented the organization and asked the foreign policy advisors about the visa waiver program. He prefaced his question by stating that failure to extend visa free travel to citizens of our new allies and friends in Central Europe has needlessly given us a black eye at a time the United States needs staunch friends.
Lehman and Feinstein responded. According to Lehman, Senator McCain supports granting of visas for education, but views visa waiver separately. While supporting visa waiver, Lehman placed considerable emphasis on the need for strong security measures. He cautioned that if the new allies do not have the same security safeguards as the U.S. does, visa free travel could provide an open window for terrorists.
Feinstein disagreed, noting that with proper precautions visa waiver is not an open window. He stressed that it is essential as well as an obligation to grant our new allies visa free travel. That policy should be a top priority.
“It’s important to stay engaged on this significant issue and not just react to developments,” noted Koszorus after the event. “The Federation has raised visa waiver in various fora and will continue to participate in the debate surrounding this issue,” he added.The program, including the question and answers relating to visa waiver, can be heard on the right column of this page or on www.Americaabroadmedia.org/election_townhall.html
April 7, 2008: "Foreign Policy and the Presidential Election: America's Image in the World," America Abroad Media, WAMU 88.5 and The American Interest Magazine present a special town hall event at American University's Kay Spiritual Center.
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Lee Feinstein, National Security Director for Senator Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. An international lawyer, Mr. Feinstein was a Senior Fellow for foreign policy and international law at the Council on Foreign Relations and a Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Kerry for President Campaign. He served in senior positions at the Defense and State departments during the Clinton administration, including as the Principal Deputy Director of the Policy Planning Staff under Secretary of State Madeleine Albright. Mr. Feinstein has written widely on U.S. foreign policy, and is a frequent commentator for the media.
John Lehman, Foreign and Defense Policy Advisor to Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign. Dr. Lehman served as Navy Secretary under President Ronald Reagan, as a staff member to Dr. Henry Kissinger on the National Security Council, and more recently as a member of the 9/11 Commission. He has also acted as a delegate to the Force Reductions Negotiations in Vienna and as Deputy Director of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency. Currently, Dr. Lehman is Chairman of J.F. Lehman & Company, a private equity investment firm.
3/28/2008 - Washington Times publishes AHF Letter to the Editor: "America and its Eastern European allies
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