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Diplomacy in Action

Inside the State Department: UN General Assembly Week - September 28, 2012

Special Briefing
Hillary Rodham Clinton
   Secretary of State
Jake Sullivan
   Director of Policy Planning 
Esther Brimmer
   Assistant Secretary, Bureau of International Organization Affairs
Aaron Snipe, Spokesperson for the Near Eastern Affairs Bureau
New York, NY
September 28, 2012


This video is available on  YouTube with closed captions.

SECRETARY CLINTON: Good afternoon and let me, once again, welcome all of you to New York.

SPOKESPERSON SNIPE: It's been very busy these days. With all of the action that's taking place here at the UN General Assembly and also all the work that we're doing in Washington and in our diplomatic missions abroad, the Arab Spring has certainly given us many challenges but also a lot of opportunities.

SECRETARY CLINTON: As President Obama told the General Assembly this week, the regime of Bashar al-Assad must come to an end so that the suffering of the Syrian people can stop and a new dawn can begin.

DIRECTOR SULLIVAN: It's important for us to engage. It's, I'd say, even more important for us to lead because there is no other country in the world that has the power to convene countries to solve problems the way that the United States can.

ASSISTANT SECRETARY BRIMMER: One of the most important things that we do is actually talk to the American people about what we're doing in foreign policy. This is a great chance to talk to students from around New York who are getting together to talk about foreign policy. Should be really cool.

SPOKESPERSON SNIPE: Today I'll be talking to a number of students from the New School about U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Talking about the opportunities as well as the challenges.

ASSISTANT SECRETARY BRIMMER: Well, this really is the center of the world for diplomacy, for at least one week. What you have, you have world leaders all in New York to talk about the major international issues of the day. Some people say it's the World Series, some people say it's the World Cup. It's all that rolled up into one. It's a chance for the major leaders of the world to address the most serious issues - whether it's fighting hunger, fighting conflict, dealing with economic development - the major issues on the international agenda. And this is a chance for the leaders around the world to try to address those together. There's only one place in the world where you can do it. And that's here in New York. And that's this week.

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