TransAfrica Forum Issue Brief
THE U.S. AND UNESCO
(Vol. 2, Nos. 13-14)
by TransAfrica Forum
Washington, DC, United States
Contents: WHAT IS UNESCO? • REAGAN WATCH: WHY UNESCO? • THE NEW WORLD INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION ORDER • Since the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) was formed in 1945, the U.S. has been an active member and moving force in the organization. At the Founding Conference, William Benton and Archibald MacLeish led the U.S. delegation, and MacLeish contributed substantially to writing the UNESCO constitution. Americans continued to play key roles in the administration and operation of UNESCO, and the U.S. became UNESCO’s largest contributor. More recently, UNESCO has increased its membership and broadened its focus, and the U.S. has become dissatisfied with UNESCO, its policies, and its programs. The Reagan administration decided to withdraw from membership at the end of this year. This decision has raised questions about the administration's attitudes toward both UNESCO in particular and multilateral institutions in general. This ISSUE BRIEF examines charges against UNESCO leveled by the administration and reasons behind the decision to withdraw, beginning with an interview with Dr. Herschelle Challenor, Director of the UNESCO Washington Liaison Office. The newsletter quotes President of Tanzania Julius Nyerere and mentions Alan Romberg, the League of Nations, salaries, the Soviet Union, the United Nations system, Rep. Jim Leach, the House Subcommittee on Human Rights and International Organizations, Assistant Secretary of State Elliott Abrams, Secretary of State George Shultz, Assistant Secretary of State Gregory Newel, the World Bank, the IMF (International Monetary Fund), UNESCO's General Conference in Paris, USIA (United States Information Agency) Director Wick, the Republican right wing, Director General M'Bow, the General Accounting Office (GAO), the New World Information and Communications Order (NWICO), the Overseas Press Club of America, the MacBride Report, and the International Commission on the Study of Communication Problem.
Used by permission of TransAfrica Forum.
Collection: Private collection of David Wiley and Christine Root