BBG Watch has learned that individuals associated with U.S. human rights, labor, and media freedom organizations have formed the Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting (CUSIB) with the aim of working with the Administration, Congress and media to promote free flow of uncensored news from the United States to countries in which journalists are threatened or lack sufficient resources. Many of CUSIB members have been active in defending Voice of America radio and TV broadcasts to China, which the Broadcasting Board of Governors tried to eliminate until it met with strong bipartisan opposition in Congress.
The CUSIB website — http://cusib.org/cusib or http://cusib.org — describes the Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting is a nonpartisan, nongovernmental organization working to strengthen free flow of uncensored news from the United States to countries with restricted and developing media environments. CUSIB supports journalism in defense of media freedom and human rights and intends to work closely with the executive branch, Congress, and media to promote effective multi-channel delivery of news and information to overcome press censorship.
CUSIB says that its members come from various backgrounds, including human rights and labor organizations, journalism, new media, and U.S. Foreign Service. Some of CUSIB members are former dissidents and political prisoners now living in exile in the United States. According to its announcement, CUSIB also consults with independent journalists fighting censorship in China, Russia and other countries ruled by authoritarian regimes. CUSIB plans to share these findings with the Broadcasting Board of Governors and other Administration officials, as well as members of Congress and U.S. and international media, a CUSIB member told BBG Watch.
CUSIB was formed at the initiative of Ann Noonan, who has been active in human rights organizations, including those working for religious freedom. She is the former President of the New York Chapter of the Visual Artists Guild. Another CUSIB founding director is Ted Lipien, president of Free Media Online and former Voice of America acting associate director. He was in charge of VOA broadcasts to Poland during Solidarity’s struggle for labor rights and democracy.
Inquiries about CUSIB and its activities can be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
BBG Watch welcomes the formation of the Committee for U.S. International Broadcasting as a major step toward restoring the original mission of U.S. broadcasts to countries without free media.