American-Russian Dialog: Mission Statement
The current state of U.S.-Russia relations in no way reflects their real potential, nor does it serve the vital national interests of the two countries. In a world where the United States and Russia face so many common threats and challenges, they all too often view each other more as a foe than a friend.
The roots of this animosity go back to the time of the Cold War with both countries being cast as inevitable opponents incapable of finding common ground on any issue. Even today, the United States and Russia are separated not only by history and culture, but also by their geopolitical goals and domestic priorities. Contributing to the problem is the shortage of direct communication between civil institutions and business groups interested in better relations between the two countries.
No two nations can ever achieve total harmony in their world views. This, however, should not prevent the United States and Russia from trying to develop a constructive working relationship. Closer U.S.-Russia cooperation is not only in the best interests of both countries but the history of the past 10 years also provides ample evidence that a coordinated U.S-Russian response to world challenges tends to reduce tension and produce positive results.
Communication is a key factor here. In order to better U.S.-Russia relations, the quality of bilateral dialog must be dramatically improved. Political and civil institutions in both countries must have a solid platform to discuss issues, exchange opinions, and resolve outstanding problems.
With this in mind, we have created American-Russian Dialog (ARD), an organization whose major goal is to promote political, economic, and civil cooperation between the United States and Russia. We are committed to fighting old stereotypes, building trust and identifying areas of common interest. And while we perfectly understand that bringing friendship and genuine cooperation into U.S.-Russia relations is a difficult goal, this goal is realistic. Moreover, achieving this goal will have enormous positive impact for our two countries and for the whole world community.
To achieve this goal, ARD is planning to realize a number of initiatives:
1. Creating a public forum for identification of problems complicating the bilateral relationship and actions capable of resolving these problems;
2. Establishing effective permanent venues for explaining the positions of each country to its counterpartâ€™s decision makers;
3. Facilitating the dialog among civil, business, and academic groups and individuals interested in improving U.S.-Russia relations;
4. Confronting misinformation and fighting stereotypes in the mass media of both countries;
5. Promoting and assisting joint public projects and personal contacts to advance the goals and objectives of the ARD.
ARD brings together people of different nationalities, cultural backgrounds and political views to advance the goal of improved U.S.-Russian relations, and we welcome the participation of those who are willing to join in the effort.
To join or for additional information please write to: Forum@RussiaHouse.org