Engaging Autocratic Allies to Promote Democracy

The democracy-promotion toolbox has been filled for more than two decades with various standard assistance programs, including technical support for reforming government agencies; training for lawyers, journalists, political party leaders, and trade unionists; direct financial aid for civil society organizations; and exchanges and scholarships for students. Today, the U.S. government, particularly the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and an army of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) often funded by USAID, the National Endowment of Democracy, or the Asia and Eurasia Foundations, continue to use such nonmilitary methods to promote democracy in dozens of countries around the world.