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In 1945, the United States helped establish the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as a means to promote international peace. During the 1970s, UNESCO was criticized for becoming too politicized. In 1984, the United States left the organization, contending that it was poorly managed and had failed to restrain budget growth. At that time, the United States urged UNESCO to reform its management practices and adopt zero real growth budgets. In 2002, the United States announced that UNESCO had made progress in adopting reforms and that the United States would rejoin UNESCO to help advance the organization's mission. The United States plans to rejoin UNESCO on October 1, 2003. To facilitate oversight of U.S. reentry into UNESCO, the House committee on International Relations asked us to review the organization's reform efforts and budget trends, as well as issues associated with the U.S. reentry.

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