Clinton reiterates diplomacy as critical to successful U.S. foreign policy

Last week, at a foreign policy meeting of U.S. ambassadors from all over the world, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reemphasized the importance of civilian power, especially in light of the recent unrest in Egypt and Tunisia. Clinton and the current administration have made diplomacy and development and integral part of their strategy on national defense, as outlined in the Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR), which was released at the end of 2010.

At last week’s gathering, representatives from 260 U.S. posts abroad were brought to Washington, D.C., for a policy discussion in which Clinton emphasized again the importance of civilian power. The political climate in a country can change rapidly, requiring an even greater need for quality U.S. representation abroad. “Diplomats,” stressed Clinton,” are the on the front lines of America’s engagement with the world.” She also encouraged them to represent the U.S. in the digital world, engaging with current social media trends to stay up-to-date on what is being said and to respond effectively.

Clinton called this “a critical time for America’s global leadership,” and stressed again the importance of diplomacy and development alongside of defense as the primary components of national security and foreign policy. “We have spent two years renewing our alliances, forging new partnerships and elevating diplomacy and development,” she said. “ Now as we look to the next two years, it is time to build on that progress and deliver results.”

For more information on Clinton’s remarks and the gathering, see:

Hillary Clinton to diplomats: Respect ‘civilian power’

Hillary Clinton calls historic meeting of U.S. Ambassadors

Clinton: Critical Time for American Leadership

Clinton: American Diplomacy Must Be Accountable