U.S. Foreign Policy Built on Defense, Diplomacy, and Development

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
April 30, 2009
Secretary Clinton and Secretary Gates Testify Before Senate

Secretary Clinton and Secretary Gates testified before the Senate Appropriations Committee today. Secretary Clinton said:"Secretary Gates and I are here together because our departments’ missions are aligned and our plans are integrated. The foreign policy of the United States is built on the three Ds: defense, diplomacy, and development. The men and women in our armed forces perform their duties with courage and skill, putting their lives on the line time and time again on behalf of our nation. And in many regions, they serve alongside civilians from the State Department and USAID, as well as other government agencies, like USDA.

We work with the military in two crucial ways. First, civilians complement and build upon our military’s efforts in conflict areas like Iraq and Afghanistan. Second, they use diplomatic and development tools to build more stable and peaceful societies, hopefully to avert or end conflict that is far less costly in lives and dollars than military action.

As you know, the United States is facing serious challenges around the world: two wars; political uncertainty in the Middle East; irresponsible nations, led by Iran and North Korea, with nuclear ambitions; an economic crisis that is pushing more people into poverty; and 21st century threats such as terrorism, climate change, trafficking in drugs and human beings. These challenges require new forms of outreach and cooperation within our own government and then with others as well.

To achieve this, we have launched a new diplomacy powered by partnership, pragmatism, and principle. We are strengthening historic alliances and reaching out to create new ones. And we’re bringing governments, the private sector, and civil society together to find global solutions to global problems.

The 2009 supplemental budget request for the Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development is a significant sum, yet our investment in diplomacy and development is only about 6 percent of our total national security budget. For Secretary Gates and myself, it is critically important that we give our civilian workers, as well as our military, the resources they need to do their jobs well."

Read the Secretary's full opening remarks before the Senate Appropriations Committee.



Sabrina O.
South Dakota, USA
May 1, 2009

Sabrina O. in South Dakota writes:

Fill a need and fix it... Once again Hillary's elegance shines through! You watch this Hillary Clinton, she will help our nation rise up and bond right along side our now President. May God shine His Grace upon Hillary and show her the path of understanding quickens peace. The first 6 months are the hardest~ Stay strong!

Brightest Blessings,

May 1, 2009

Rose P. writes:

A Multidimensional system and appropach works when the unity exists among the cabinet and the President! Common sense politics of being human and having regards for human rights is what is needed for the world with us as being a torchholder! And Hilary Clinton is doing a wonderful job of it with extensive experience on both sides of the dialogue!

Tennessee, USA
May 1, 2009

Joe in Tennessee writes:

Vigilance, constant vigilance is a primary requisite which many feel we are losing, not gaining?

I'd like to remind everyone that President Bush did shake hands and fly on a moment's notice as crucial problems arose, including with Putin when he made the first purchase of oil with the euro dollar and again with China when they were found to be holding over 100 billion in US currency and not putting it back into circulation .

Many people will welcome us and take our money; many opponents to the American way of life will find weakness in this methodology or stall for time. President Clinton did this with North Korea and with Venezuela, holding out that good old American sincerity of aid and well being. North Korea continued to manufacture missiles and arms for sale until President Bush stopped providing them. This went on for years. Bush continued to provide aid in the form of food: Congressional Report Order Code RL31785

Even with this aid, North Korea continued to spy on Japan, South Korea and engage in other covert activities, including violation of all UN agreements. Venezuela is not any different, having been given provisions of military equipment, food aid and a ton of money for the sole purpose of ending narcotics. Bush took that money away because Chavez was NOT honoring his words or agreements with the United States.

We need to be realistic first and foremost. President Clinton was one of the most diplomatic and openly personable Presidents we have had. If these countries did not honor their agreements then, why now, where is the premise for change? The History of over two decades with the same countries show IT DID NOT WORK THEN, why now?

How much money is the US Taxpayer going to provide our enemies while their families do without? This is not a game; socialism is on the move again. From Africa, where Kim Yam is going to Zimbabwe next week in an oil for arms deal and the newly organized One Africa that is in opposition to AFRICACOM as a unification effort.

We cannot give our countries assets away readily in the name of friendship only?

"All the Angels in heaven cannot deter what the devil may plan as he will use their good virtue against them." Unfortunately, this has been proven again and again in modern history.

VIGLANCE, constant VIGLANCE and putting America first, not last.

United States
May 3, 2009

Zharkov in U.S.A. writes:

Our "development" leg of foreign policy has been a disaster for Africa, as some in African nations are beginning to realize:

Aid to African Nations: Good or Bad?

Since 1980 rich nations have pumped $450 billion dollars into Sub-Saharan African nations. Now, what I would like to ask is -- "What do we have to show for it?"

Sadly, the answer would be, "nothing."

Despite its intent, aid has undermined development in Africa, intensified corruption and given birth to countless dictators.

Development aid has not, historically, lifted African nations out of poverty and destitution. Is it likely to do so in the future? The odds are stacked against it. The average growth in per capita growth domestic product (GDP) in Sub-Saharan Africa from 1980 to 2004 was 0.33 percent (less than 1 %!).

Many of the African nations are economically worse off than they were at the end of the colonial era in the 1960s.

Bottom Line: African countries are withering precisely because of aid. Aid has been our biggest obstacle to development.

Disadvantages of Aid


When a country can continuously count on others to bail it out, it loses its need to reform internally. Aid, therefore, becomes the reason to kill all motivation to improve from within. Public officials lack any incentive to institute any macro-economic reforms when the amount of money available for the government to spend doesn't depend on the performance of the economy.


Aid from wealthy countries hardly reaches the intended beneficiaries. Instead, aid has widened the insatiable appetite of corrupt leaders, often becoming the way to get-rich-quick for corrupt strong-men. Transparency International, an organization that fights corruption on a global scale, has consistently ranked Sub-Saharan African countries among the governments with the highest levels of corruption worldwide.


Government-to-government aid often consists of surplus commodities and money that is earmarked to purchase goods from the donor country. This is particularly true of the United States. Due to price supports and production subsidies, U.S. farmers produce much more than Americans can consume. The government ends up with the surplus and donates it to poor countries. And guess what? This food aid has caused markets for locally grown farm products to collapse.

Now tell me, why on earth do we need AID ???

Ethiopia (and Africa in general) are like American consumers, always in debt, always worried about filling the immediate need and less worried about the long term risks.

What is happening in Africa today is the biggest crime and robbery since slavery and colonialism. We are meant to fail, by design. Choice depends on the freedom to choose, and if you are shackled with debt, then you don't have the freedom to choose. People in debt become hopeless, and hopeless people hardly do something about their problem.

What we need is a fair trade, and not aid that is designed to keep us subordinate.

By Dr. Ethiopia


United States
May 12, 2009

Zharkov in U.S.A. writes:

Some people might want to read Dr. Ethiopia's original article published at:


New Hampshire, USA
June 24, 2009

Barbara in New Hampshire writes:

Thank you Secretary Clinton for all your incredible works. To think of all of the issues ahead of you is beyond belief. Never has any administration had to deal with so many issues at the same time. And still I have faith in what you and this administration can accomplish.

I have to speak of my aversion to GMO's. There are many who have experimented with the GMO's only to find what really works is some good compost which is in sink with the way of the world. Please educate yourself about GMO's. They are a dead end. We must think in a more sustainable way of life. Please bring the balance back to the world with natural fertilization. GMO's are not the answer. You enjoy your hot peppers but if we continue with these chemical fertilizers and gmo's you'll know longer enjoy all the beautiful peppers and other veggies we know and love. All this is so very possible just speak to the organic farmers and they will show you the way. We are depleting the land and it needs nourishment without chemicals. Stay away from MONSANTO they are the dead end of this planet. We can do this. I truely believe in you. But please inform yourself about organic's. Its easy, do able and sustains this planet.

Do you realize there are people saving seeds because Monsanto (or whatever their name is these days) wants to control our seeds. They've developed seeds that can't be used again for planting. So we would be totally depended upon this HUGE corporations for our seeds. Enough is enough dear Secretary. Don't let these corporate kings control our world.

Please don't look to GMO's as the answer. If you need guidance go to the people like Alice Waters and the organic folks. Its the only sustainable way to move though what we are facing ahead of us. I stand with you our Secretary Clinton but please know this is the only way for our good future. It is the only clear way to visualize our future.

May Happy Returns,

New Hampshire, USA
May 5, 2009

Barbara in New Hampshire writes:

I will go anywhere or do anything to help you with the reparation of this planet. GMO's are not the answer.

There are plenty of other ways to improve growing and sustaining our crops.

I think this may not be one of your favorite topics but there are many who can assist you with these issues. I am one.

You are the best hope Secretary Clinton!

All the Best,

New York, USA
May 3, 2009

Ron in New York writes:

DEF-DIP-DEV @ State:

A great opportunity for global synergies: Many years at UN and international organization meetings (including WB/IMF ) underscore the key elements of a successful DEF-DIP-DEV program:

1- Be clear that Defense is for security purposes. The goal is to establish or restore stability and security.

2- The aim of Diplomacy is to ensure the values driving the Development are oriented for public benefit and not private or political gain.

3- Development projects should empower the people; and not rob them of their economic, social or political rights.

California, USA
May 12, 2009

Jonathan in California writes:

It's wonderful to see such a fantastic paradigm shift in American diplomacy. That human rights, women's rights, and development are now at the very forefront of our foreign policy is very encouraging and a great step in the right direction. Thank you!


Latest Stories