Conversations With America: U.S. Foreign Policy Priorities

Posted by Rainy Young
September 9, 2013
Conversations With America: U.S. Foreign Policy Priorities

Jennifer Psaki, U.S. Department of State Spokesperson, Bureau of Public Affairs and Marie Harf, U.S. Department of State Deputy Spokesperson, will hold a discussion with Cheryl Benton, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs.  The conversation will highlight U.S. foreign policy priorities.  The discussion will be available for on-demand viewing soon on YouTube and www.state.gov.

You are invited to participate by submitting questions, some of which will be selected for response during the taping.  Submit your questions below on DipNote, the Department of State’s official blog, and join the ongoing discussion via Twitter using the hashtag #askPA. Please submit questions via DipNote and Twitter as soon as possible for consideration.

View other Conversations with America here and by accessing the Conversations with America video podcasts on iTunes.

About the Author: Rainy Young serves as Director of the Office of Public Liaison at the U.S. Department of State.

Comments

Comments

Helen S.
|
Arizona, USA
September 9, 2013
Question on foreign policy Why don't you be honest about chemical warfare - that we supplied serin to foreign country (ies) and that we used white phophorus as a weapon in Afghanistan? Question 2 Why are we the self-appointed "peacekeepers of the world"?
Ashim C.
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India
September 10, 2013
If ever, hypothetically, US is required to take a stand on territorial disputes involving a relatively weaker but factually and politically correct democratic country like say India and stronger combination of authoritarian states say like communist China and Pakistan, which may be strategically important for USA's immediate or at best mid term objectives, will USA be guided by principles or immediate interests? And will USA go as far it went in gulf war, Iraq and currently in Syria?
Michiko M.
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District Of Columbia, USA
September 10, 2013
In the wake of the eighth anniversary of the September 19 Joint Declaration, China has offered a Track 1.5 meeting with senior diplomats from the Six Party member states, including North Korea. The meeting will be held on September 18 in Beijing. Do you have any plans to send a senior State Department official or others to the meeting?
Troy C.
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Indiana, USA
September 10, 2013
Why is there not more information via media regarding major political issues? It seems people are kept in the dark until they do their own research. In my opinion, the politicians should keep the people informed just as any representative of any kind is required to do. For example, it seems not a single person knew of the Syrian conflict until the chemical weapons issue, since it was on national news. There should be some sort of incentive for those who broadcast real social issues from objective perspectives.
ıcah n.
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Turkey
September 10, 2013
for america in the new world order. money design, use and role. sovereignty of the best games and players. trust state and trust company cooperation. the theory of efficient operation and printing. public and private institutions >> co-ordination and decisions.known and unknown power. The use of smart..
Dimitrios A.
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United Kingdom
September 10, 2013
Is the conclusion of an EU-US umbrella agreement on data transfer for law enforcement purposes a priority for the US? To what extent the allegations concerning the NSA spying on EU affect the negotiations on the data transfer umbrella agreement?
E S.
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Iran
September 10, 2013
What is the main priority for making a decision on Syria? Would it be the benefit to US or the benefit to Syria (which of course would be in long-term benefit to US, but may not be in short-term benefit of US) ? In eaither case shouldn't a decisive decision be made to prevent people getting killed by Asad's regim instead of years of diplomacy?
E S.
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Iran
September 10, 2013
any country should be a self appointed peace keeper in the world! Some countries dont do it becasue it is against their benefits, but in long run a world without peace, is against every one's benefits.
mohamed h.
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Iraq
September 11, 2013
Why the U.S. government is reluctant to disarm Assad chemotherapy or to launch an air strike Is it fear of the international community or the reaction of Syria's allies Question 2 Why does not the United States accepts the testimony of Syria on the use of Almaadh Syrian weapon chemical Question 3 Is the U.S. sure that the authorities Alorihchemical will not disarm
Julie A.
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New York, USA
September 11, 2013
The US, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel and Turkey have been providing weapons, funding, intellegence and/or assistance to militants who are trying to overthrow the government of Syria. Foreign-backed foreign militants have used chemical weapons against Syrian civilians and Syrian troops this year. The possession and use of chemical weapons by the militant "rebels" was acknowledged by the UN inspector Carla Del Ponte in the spring of this year, and has been admitted and documented by the militant "rebels" themselves in videos they recently uploaded to the internet. In your opinion, would Syria be morally justified if they bombed the US, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Israel in order to "send a message" and to "punish" us?
Eric J.
|
New Mexico, USA
September 11, 2013

@ Rainy Young,

RE: A question of priorities and the current evolution of foreign policy:

"Others have asked whether it's worth acting if we don’t take out Assad. As some members of Congress have said, there’s no point in simply doing a “pinprick” strike in Syria.

Let me make something clear: The United States military doesn’t do pinpricks. Even a limited strike will send a message to Assad that no other nation can deliver. I don't think we should remove another dictator with force -- we learned from Iraq that doing so makes us responsible for all that comes next. But a targeted strike can make Assad, or any other dictator, think twice before using chemical weapons." -President Obama Sept. 10, 2013

---end excerpt--

I'd offer reference to a conversation I had with John in Greece back in 2012..as context to what the president said above;

http://blogs.state.gov/stories/2012/06/01/message-syria

For the flip side of the president's premis is equally true, that if we have the capability to remove Assad from the land of the living and factor him out of the equasion of "all that comes next" ...and we don't take such direct and targeted action on Assad personally,...then we also assume responsibility for anything that comes next by his hand and orders given by him, because we left him in power.

More comments to Amb. Ford in regards to this;
http://blogs.state.gov/stories/2012/06/12/note-us-humanitarian-aid-reach...

We are not responsible for the reality created by Assad, but we are responsible along with every other nation on this planet for the reality on the ground in Syria simply because no matter what the president's decision may be ultimately...we have the capacity to change the current reality on the ground for Assad himself, along with his regime.

Here's something for the President and the Sec. of State to chew on, while they determine if the Russian's offer to "secure" Assad's chemical weapons is real or not:

http://blogs.state.gov/stories/2012/02/11/syria-violence-not-equal

Eric |New Mexico, USA .February 12, 2012
Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ Amb. Ford,

So now folks have sat. pictures to show the Russians how their arms sales to Assad are being used, you think they might wanna "repo" those weapons, unilaterally? Or are they still telling folks their sales are perfectly "legal" under these circumstances?

Seems if the Russians want to keep their naval base , the'll prop up the devil himself to hang onto it, when their better bet would be to hang their hat on the people's hope and hope they renue their lease after Assad's inevitable fall....thet're going about securing Russia's interests in a way that is guranteed to cost them dearly when the Syrian people do an accounting and send the Kremlin a hefty bill for supporting Assad's crimes against humanity.

Are the Russians being informed of these things by the US gov. as food for thought?

Or are they beyond reason too?

Thanks,

EJ

---end archived comment---

Now I don't know what the State Dept.'s spokespeople will think about what they've just read here, but this whole media "flap" over Sec. Kerry's "rhetorical" off the cuff hypothetical solution that "Assad could turn over all his chemical weapons stockpiles in the next week" in answer to a question...and the Russian's proposal taking his remark seriously...and/or who's idea it was in the first place....LOL!!! Well, pardon me if I have some basis to take credit for the notion that "repossesing" Assad's weapons would be in the Russian's own interests.

After all, I was kind of pitching a wild, untennable, diplomatic curve-ball at the good Ambassador, and it looks like the Sectretary has perfected it on the world stage in tossing it at a reporter.

But that's only part of the solution...as this doesn't hold the Assad's regime accountable, nor resolves his ill intent towards his people.

And in reference to my full comments here I think there's a case to be made for examining our foreign policy priorities;

http://blogs.state.gov/stories/2013/08/19/words-action

"Lastly, I'd be remis if I didn't suggest to the honorable Secretary, a humble premis to put a lot of international aid workers out of a job for lack of a crisis to attend to.

That's simply to craft a 21st century foreign policy designed to ban dictatorships , tyrants , and fanatical religious extremists with maleveolent intent from the face of the planet, ASAP.

I'm not suggesting it will be a "simple" cookie cutter policy that comes forth from such a simple concept, but if you can succeeed in doing so, future generations might just have a shot at having a better world to raise their children in."-EJ

---end excerpt---

And so I would simply ask the panel to illuminate whether the President's decision is a reflection in any way of this citizen's friendly public challenge put to his Secretary of State?

You'all may laugh at that thought, but if you'd spent the better part of a decade writing a book called, "The Cure for Political Stupidity and/or How Not To Go To War With America" on this blog, only to see the "powers that be" take select pages from it and have seem to have found possible solutions in the thinking contained within them....you might ask the same question of your government.

Simply because it would be natural to want to know if all that effort writing had made a difference to the way folks approach the problems and the priorities.

One point of view among many....but at least it offers hope.

Best,

 EJ

Joseph K.
|
Virginia, USA
September 11, 2013
Can USA Ambassador Pyatt for Ukraine meet with imprisoned Yulia Tymoshenko on Sept. 15, 2013 to coincide with a patriotic vigil at Kharkiv Central Clinic Hospital #5?
Carl L.
|
New York, USA
September 13, 2013
The Times has given Mr. Putin great positive coverage this week. Why do you think this is so?
Deniz L.
|
Alabama, USA
October 4, 2013

You are right.Mr.Carl

.

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