Secretary Kerry Testifies on the FY 2014 Foreign Affairs Budget

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
April 17, 2013
Secretary Kerry Testifies Before the House on the FY 2014 Foreign Affairs Budget

On April 17, Secretary of State John Kerry testified before the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the House Appropriations Committee regarding the Foreign Affairs budget for 2014. In his opening remarks, Secretary Kerry reaffirmed that "America's investment in foreign policy is 'national security insurance.' And there really isn't anything foreign about foreign policy anymore." He made clear that "all of this speaks to why this budget is not just a collection of numbers; it's an illustration of our values and our priorities."

Secretary Kerry provided examples of the high-impact, low-cost work that the State Department conducts to make the world safer, from countering terrorism to feeding the hungry. The Secretary also underscored, "The simple fact is the United States cannot be strong at home if we are not strong in the world, in today's world. This is particularly true when it comes to our domestic economic renewal."

He emphasized that the United States needs to be "more visible, engaged, and strong in certain stoke our economic engines with the trade and business opportunities that are available all across this planet." He explained that is why the Obama Administration is committed to completing the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership and the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

Secretary Kerry concluded his remarks by outlining how the proposed budget would support the work of the men and women of the State Department. Acknowledging that the State Department operates in a dangerous world, Secretary Kerry said, "We stand for optimism. We stand for opportunity. And we stand for equality. And we stand in opposition to all those who would replace hope with hate, who replace peace with violence and war. That's what we believe."

To read or watch Secretary of State John Kerry's opening remarks to Congress, please visit



United States
April 18, 2013

Henry in the U.S.A. writes:

I'm sorry, but this just reeks of hypocrisy. How can the State Department claim to be "fighting terrorism," when the US has been using Qatar as a proxy to arm and train mercenary armies cloned from Al-Qaeda, drawing upon the expertise of the founder of the American Blackwater mercenary firm? How can the US claim to "Stand in opposition to those who replace peace with violence and war," when the State Department has been utterly intransigent in its opposition to any non-military solution in Syria, or to any other conflict in the region for that matter?

Ray A.
Alabama, USA
April 18, 2013

Ray A. in Alabama writes:

Would someone please inform the good Secretary of State that it is being reported in Latin America that during his testimony on the FY 2014 Foreign Affairs Budget he referred to this area as "our backyard". As a Latin American studies major and someone who spent 16 years living in Latin America I can tell you that this expression is terribly rude and insensitive (especially when it is translated literally) and really gets him off on the wrong foot with regard to Latin America. I know that this is a common expression in English that basically means "very close to home" but in fact it implies that it is something we own (which we don't). I have tried to smooth things over with some who have taken offense, but it would be a good idea for him to issue an apology or at least a clarifying statement.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Best regards.

Abdul h.
April 23, 2013

Abdul H. in Bangladesh writes:


Ashim C.
April 18, 2013

Ashim C. in India writes:

With so many states almost behaving like rogues, it is good to read Mr. John Kerry saying "visible, engaged, and strong in certain stoke our economic engines with the trade and business opportunities that are available all across this planet". Remaining engaged without being visible can also be a good option while US rebalances it's engagements in South Asia and Asia Pacific region particularly. For lesser mortals, rebalancing would mean not putting too many eggs in one large basket but having alternate baskets large enough in numbers and size to match and even exceed ROI from first group of baskets both singly and collectively. That one basket with too may eggs can become a dangerous basket is traditional wisdom.

Roy M.
Costa Rica
April 22, 2013

Roy M. in Costa Rica writes:

Secretary Kerry demonstrated ignorance and insensitivity, unbecoming to a Secretary of State, by refering to Latin America as the backyard of the United States. Whether he knows it or not, Latin America not only is important to the U.S., it also merits respect. An apology should be forthcoming.

ghulam u.
New York, USA
April 23, 2013

Ghulam U. in New York writes:

I would like to request the state department of USA that stop pakistans aid at all, because you provide money and they buy weapons and they use these weapons on Sindhis and Balochis ,Please stop genosite in sindh and balochistan . We need american support to built our future .thanks .

Don R.
Missouri, USA
April 23, 2013

Don R. in Missouri writes:

Mr.Kerry..I found senator Rand Pauls question to you about the aid sent to foreign countries being better utilized at home most effective..Even Saddam Hussein has a huge case full of United States currency when he was apprehended..As I see it America is noteworthy of funding its enemies while struggling to keep the workforce at home secure in their retirement social security..Increasing the retirement age we just went though a sequester over a lousy 140 million when you give Egypt(by no means a poor country)250 millions dollars..Most appalling is the fact that Gun control is such a issue when more important features like keeping this country financially sound is beating at the doors..Rand Paul seems to be a very adept and capable senator with the most important matters foremost in his mind.Like protecting the laws which govern this country like the Constitution and Bill of rights intact and sacred and the adressing of wastrel spending in Washington.It would appear that the upper management of this country could learn a lesson.I do sincerly hope his Vy for the precidency is forthcoming.


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