The 48th Annual Munich Security Conference took place February 3-5, 2012, in Munich, Germany. In this video from the U.S.-European Media Hub, U.S. Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany Philip D. Murphy notes that this year marks the first-ever participation by two U.S. Cabinet officials in this event. Ambassador Murphy also describes how the conference has changed over the years, but points out that "one thing that hasn't changed over 48 years is how important the American role is, and how importantly we take that role."
During the conference, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said, "...I have now traveled to Europe 27 times as Secretary of State. President Obama has visited ten times. So when President Obama says that Europe remains the cornerstone of our engagement with the world, those are not just reassuring words; that is the reality. Europe is our partner of first resort."
Secretary Clinton also addressed recent developments in Syria. She said, "Here in Munich, I have had productive discussions with a number of my counterparts concerning a list of critical issues. One that kept coming up is the ongoing violence in Syria. As a bankrupt regime clings to power by shelling its own people in their homes, we have seen a living nightmare play out in the city of Homs. It's a nightmare that has been repeated across Syria over these past many months. Almost 30 days -- almost 30 years to the day after the infamous Hama massacre, the international community must send Assad a clear message: By repeating the horrors of Syria's past, you have lost your place in Syria's future."