Last week, I had the incredible opportunity to accompany Secretary Clinton on her trip to Asia, along with over 200 American government officials. According to the Secretary, this may be the largest U.S. delegation ever to attend a meeting anywhere in the world.
First, we touched down in Tokyo, where Secretary Clinton met with Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada and Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama. Second, we headed to Shanghai for my favorite portions of the trip, the 2010 Shanghai Expo and soup dumplings. While at the Expo, the Secretary visited the U.S. and Chinese Pavilions, delivered remarks at the carbon-neutral USA Pavilion and met with U.S. Student Ambassadors.
After visiting Shanghai, we traveled to Beijing for the U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue and the People-to-People Exchange. At the Dialogue, Secretary Clinton, U.S. Treasury Secretary Geithner, and key leaders from both delegations exchanged ideas about challenges facing both of our countries. U.S. Ambassador to China Huntsman described the Dialogue as a great success.
At the People-to-People Exchange, Secretary Clinton and Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong focused on expanding citizens' engagement between our countries. This initiative will bring our countries closer together and advance vital educational exchanges between our countries. Following the signing of the Exchange, we witnessed a spectacular production put on by young students from both China and the United States.
While in Beijing, I also had the chance to catch up with staff at the U.S. Embassy and other State Department colleagues who worked on the Secretary's trip. From the policy makers, to the Marines protecting the embassy, to the Public Affairs Officers using social media to engage with communities online and offline, I was impressed and proud to see the great work our colleagues are doing overseas.
The last stop of the trip was in Seoul, South Korea, where the Secretary discussed important regional matters with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and South Korean Foreign Minister Yu Myung-hwan. This was an important visit given the recent situation in the Korean Peninsula, and Secretary Clinton told President Lee that the United State would stand beside South Korea.
Overall, it was an incredible, exciting journey, and I am still in awe of how the Secretary is able to travel these distances on a routine basis.