The following are the principles listed by former Secretary
of State Madeline Albright, in her own words, to guide America's
efforts to promote democracy abroad. She spoke April 28 during a
Princeton colloquium honoring Woodrow Wilson 1879. For a story on
her speech in the June 7, 2006 PAW, click here.
1. It is both right and smart for America to assist those who
want our help in establishing and strengthening democratic institutions.
2. Democracy must grow from within. … We cannot create
the desire or the discipline to establish a durable basis for democratic
3. We should increase our support for building democracy around
the world, including in Iraq.
4. Democracy-building is a team exercise. The United States should
be working … to bolster the pro-democracy programs of the
United Nations and of regional organizations.
5. Building democracy is a bottom-up, not a top-down, proposition.
6. Free elections, while essential, are not sufficient. …
[Democracy's] purpose is to create a system in which everyone has
a voice, on election day and in between.
7. Democracy must deliver. … A strong economy, like a
strong democracy, is built from the ground up.
8. We must recognize what democracy can and cannot do. [Democracy]
is not a ticket to some fantasyland where all evil is vanquished
and everyone agrees with us.
9. Democracy should be inclusive. No political party should be
excluded out of hand, but every party … should be required
to refrain from intimidation, embrace constitutional procedures,
and respect minority rights.
10. In promoting democracy, we should adopt a global approach. … We
cannot expect democracy to gain ground in the Middle East if it
is slipping backward in Latin America, Africa, and the former Soviet
11. To support democracy, we must also support those … who
have been working to promote democratic norms [such as non-governmental
12. We must be ourselves true to democratic values. The spectacle
of Abu Ghraib, the detention without charge at Guantanamo, the
waffling over torture, and the warrantless surveillance of domestic
targets have … done great harm to our nation.
13. As America continues to support democracy, we should do so
with some degree of introspection.
14. Our promotion of democracy should revolve around a simple
and basic idea: that every individual counts.