NSN Ceases Operation
After a decade at the forefront of shaping safer, saner U.S. foreign policy, the board of the National Security Network announces that the organization has closed its doors due to financial difficulties.
NSN brought together national security, political and community leaders who shared a set of foundational principles: that American leadership is most effective when exercised in partnership with other nations, strongest when carried out in tandem with American values, and only durable when subject to the oversight and approval of the American people.
Noted for its pioneering role in bringing policy experts and progressive advocates together under the 2006-2008 “Iraq Campaign” that ultimately sparked change both in a disastrous policy and in Washington’s political makeup, NSN was also lauded for its organizing, messaging and agenda-setting roles in the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections and the campaigns to pass the New START Treaty, implement the Iran deal, and repeal Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.
“We leveled the playing field for a set of ideas about how America best serves our interests and values beyond our borders, and I’m very proud of that,” said founding President Rand Beers. “But changes in our politics, and in non-profit funding models, meant that it was time for a new model of organization to emerge. After fifty years in the field, I’m more convinced than ever that national security advocacy will have to be embedded within our larger political and social institutions, rather than carried out by small single-focus organizations.”
Under the leadership of Heather Hurlburt from 2008 to 2013 and John Bradshaw from 2013 to 2016 as Executive Directors, NSN made a significant contribution to shaping the national security debate and trained many analysts and advocates who now work throughout the field.
“I’m proudest of the generation of substantive, politically-savvy national security leadership we built,” said Brian Katulis, NSN Board chair. “We’ve got network and staff alumni serving across government, on presidential campaigns, in think tanks, the private sector, the military, overseas, and in local government.”
“In the near term, the loss of NSN’s messaging leaves a hole,” said Beers. “But I’m confident that we’ve fulfilled our core mission: securing a place for a better foreign policy combined with intelligent politics.”