Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

Susan Yoshihara is Senior Vice President for Research and Director of the International Organizations Research Group at the Center for Family & Human Rights where she advises UN delegations and U.S. policy makers on women, peace and security, maternal and child health policy, population, and human rights.

She has participated in UN negotiations on development and human rights since 2006 as a member of civil society, and served on the Holy See delegation to the UN Commission on Population and Development.

Dr. Yoshihara has given expert testimony before UN and U.S. government bodies, including the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, UN Security Council, and the UN Economic and Social Council, on the human rights treaty system, human trafficking, women and children in post-conflict peace building, and the role of the family in sustainable development.

Before joining C-Fam, Susan served for 20 years as an active-duty U.S. Navy helicopter pilot in the Western Pacific. She led combat logistics missions in the Gulf War, conducted humanitarian assistance missions in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific Islands, and served on the personal staff to the combatant commander of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet/NATO Striking Fleet, Admiral William J. Flanagan. Dr. Yoshihara was on the faculty at the U.S. Naval War College where she taught national security affairs, international relations, strategic leadership, and organizational management.

As a White House Fellow (1996-97) she conducted research on Nazi theft of gold and other assets of Jewish families (the Nazi Gold Project) for the Under Secretary of Commerce, Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat. The effort led to the repatriation of $8 billion to the victims of the Nazis.

Dr. Yoshihara is the author of Waging War to Make Peace: U.S. Intervention in Global Conflicts (Praeger, 2010), which examines why the great powers enter small wars. She is also co-editor of Population Decline and the Remaking of Great Power Politics (Potomac Books, 2012). The book challenges a widely-held, but false, view that population growth harms global security. Instead, it argues that demographic decline is making the world less secure.  The study has been translated into Japanese as The Life and Death of Nations (2014) and has inspired several international conferences on the nexus of population and security.

Her scholarly work on human rights has influenced the debate at the UN for more than a decade. Her groundbreaking monograph (with Douglas Sylva), “Rights by Stealth,” examines for the first time the use of the UN human rights system to create new rights. Its findings have informed efforts by UN member states to compel UN reform, specifically greater transparency and accountability.  Her law review article, “Lost in Translation,” is the first to document and analyze the debates about reproductive health leading to the latest UN human rights treaty, the Convention on Rights of Persons with Disability. In her law review article, “Abortion and the Laws of War,” Dr. Yoshihara unmasked the emerging attempt by activists and European governments to redefine the laws of armed conflict, including the Geneva Conventions, with novel new rights and impose them upon the United States. Scores of personal interviews with immigrant populations in the U.S. and Canada led to her monograph, “Chicken Kiev,” which uncovered the role of domestic lobbies working with Congress to change a half century of U.S. foreign policy and grant recognition of sovereignty to Ukraine, hastening the demise of the Soviet Union.

Dr. Yoshihara is a frequent public speaker and her commentary has appeared in Fox News, Yomiuri Shimbun, Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Times, Providence Journal, Roll Call, Human Events, and National Review Online.

She holds a Ph.D. in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, received an M.A. in National Security Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School, and a B.S. from the U.S. Naval Academy. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband Dr. Toshi Yoshihara and their two daughters.

Abortion Politics Threaten U.S. Budget Battle

Abortion has roiled the ongoing budget battles in the U.S. Congress.  

Friday Fax

New UN Ambassador’s Challenges Executing Trump Pro-life Foreign Policy

The U.S. Senate confirmed their top diplomat at the United Nations last week, Kelly Knight Craft. She now faces several major challenges if she is to succeed in executing President Trump’s international pro-life agenda.

Friday Fax

UN Women to Replace “Women” with “Gender”

The UN agency for women announced last week it is no longer focused on women’s rights but rather “equality of all genders,” including LGBTIQ+.

Friday Fax

Will White House Women’s Initiative be Hijacked by Abortion and Gender Advocates?

Democratic Congresswoman Lois Frankel spoiled the White House plans for a controversy-free event last week when she took to the podium and said women can’t be empowered without contraception and abortion.

Friday Fax

UN Women Calls Families “Dark” Place for Women

Are divorce, cohabitation, same sex marriage, out of wedlock birth and adolescent sex good for women? The latest report from UN Women considers them “a positive reflection of women’s empowerment.”

Friday Fax

UN Treaty Apparatus Furious with Trump Over Abortion and Money

A three-day feminist conclave last week shows that Trump’s pro-life policy is hitting abortion activists where it hurts: in the pocketbook.

Friday Fax

Terrorism Court Case May have Impact on Social Issues

Two years ago, the United Arab Emirates broke off diplomatic relations with Qatar and gave Qatari nationals fourteen days to leave the country.

Friday Fax

Ivanka Trump’s Africa Trip Sparks Abortion Controversy

Though she is known to favor abortion rights, Ivanka Trump has tried to steer clear of the abortion debate in her role as Presidential advisor.

Friday Fax

UN Official Says “F-You” to Trump and Pro-Life Delegations

Spokespersons for two UN agencies outlined a plan to counter the U.S. pro-life position by seeking a new international consensus on sexual rights without the consent of sovereign states.    

Friday Fax

Commentary: The End of Human Rights?

While massive atrocities have experts lamenting a general retreat from human rights, abortion groups say they are making progress using the field to further their agenda.

Friday Fax

Selected Publications:

Dr. Susan Yoshihara on The Larry O’Connor Show (WMAL), September 19, 2019

What really happened with the breastfeeding scandal in Geneva,” The Hill, July 13, 2018

Does USAID Blame Women for the World’s Wars?,” The Stream, April 28, 2018

Time to let Trump lead on women, peace and security,” The Hill, February 12, 2018

The World Doesn’t Need the UN Population Fund,” The Stream, May 9, 2017

Abortion and the Laws of War: Subverting Humanitarianism by Executive Edict,” University of St. Thomas Journal of Law & Public Policy (2016)

New contraception rule for immigrants hogties faith-based groups,” The Hill, March 11, 2015

The World’s Worst Law,” Townhall, January 8, 2015

Lost in Translation: The Failure of the International Reproductive Rights Norm,” Ave Maria Law Review, Spring 2013

Cooler heads prevailed on Disabilities Treaty,” The Hill, December 5, 2012

Hardships and Fears of an Aging Population,” Human Life Review,  Spring 2012

The quiet revolution in Asia,” Human Events, March 8, 2012

The one thing Putin wants Russians to do like Americans,” Fox News, March 2, 2012

Defense cuts are poised to squander America’s demographic advantage,” Philadelphia Inquirer, February 26, 2012

Seizing America’s Demographic Advantage,” Roll Call, February 15, 2012

As China Goes Geriatric, We Have the Advantage,” Washington Times, February 14, 2012

Book Review: “Human Rights and the Unborn Child,” National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly 11, no.3 (Autumn 2011), 599-602

Waging War to Make Peace- U.S. Intervention in Global ConflictsBook: Waging War to Make Peace: U.S. Intervention in Global Conflicts, Praeger Security International, 2010.

Book Review: “Terrorism and the Ethics of War,” International Philosophical Quarterly, vol.51, no.2, issue 202 (June 2011)

Does CEDAW Promote Abortion?,” Testimony for U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Human Rights and the Law.  November 18, 2010

Women Deliver a Ruse,” Washington Times, June 4, 2010

Brickbats for Pope Benedict,” Washington Times, April 20, 2010

Aging World Population is Profound Crisis,” Human Events, April 15, 2010

“Clinton Promises Global Push for Abortion Rights,” National Review Online, January 15, 2010

The Quest for Happiness: How the UN’s Advocacy of Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights Undermines Liberty and Opportunity,” in Brett D. Schaefer, ed., ConUNdrum: The Limits of the United Nations and the Search for Alternatives (New York: Rowman & Littlefield, 2009)

Obama Nominee Wants U.N. Committees Setting U.S. Social Policy,” Human Events.com, April 7, 2009

Book Review: “Fatal Misconception: The Struggle to Control World Population,” National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, vol.8, no.4 (Winter 2009)

Book Review: “Agenda Setting, the UN, and NGOs: Gender Violence and Reproductive Rights,” National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, vol.8, no. 3 (Autumn 2008)

How to Think About the Responsibility to Protect,” First Things online, June 16, 2008

The False Choice Between Development and Daughters,” First Things online, August 23, 2007

EU at the UN: The Effects of its New Rights Agenda on International Social Structures,” EUSA, May 17 2007, Montreal

Rights by Stealth: the Role of UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies in the Campaign for an International Right to Abortion,” National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, vol.7, no.1 (Spring 2007)

“Kosovo,” in Flashpoints in the War on Terrorism, Derek Reveron and Jeffrey Murer, eds. (New York: Routlege, 2006)

“The Trouble with Mixed Motives: Debating the Political, Legal, and Moral Dimensions of Intervention,” Naval War College Review vol. LVII, no. 3/4 (Summer/Autumn 2004)