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Foreign Policy Begins At Home

Dr. Zvobgo penned an essay in the 50th anniversary special issue of Foreign Policy Magazine on how domestic transitional justice in a Biden-Harris administration could improve the United States' foreign relations and national security.

In the essay, she challenges a conventional wisdom that domestic policy and foreign policy are distinct when issues like human rights actually sit at the intersection. What the U.S. does at home matters for what happens abroad, for example in immigration. The Trump administration's travel bans on several Muslim-majority nations (later joined by a ban against some African nations) hurt both U.S. and global security. She draws on examples like Chad, which withdrew from fighting Boko Haram with the U.S. when the Trump administration put the country on the ban list.

In addition to describing human rights challenges like this one, Zvobgo suggests a range of transitional justice remedies, including legal reforms. One is the No Ban Act, sponsored by Democratic Rep. Judy Chu. The act, which was passed by the House of Representatives in July 2020 and has since languished in the Senate, would repeal the existing travel bans and prevent similarly biased policies in the future.


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