I am pleased to submit the Strategic Plan of the Department of State and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) for fiscal years 2004 to 2009. Our organizations share a noble mission: to create a more secure, democratic, and prosperous world for the benefit of the American people and the international community.
This is the first time that the Department of State and USAID have jointly prepared a strategic plan, and we will work together to execute it. Our close collaboration will ensure that our foreign policy and development programs are fully aligned to advance the National Security Strategy of the United States, which President Bush issued in 2002. The National Security Strategy recognizes that diplomacy and development assistance are critically important tools for building a safer, freer, better world.
The employees of the Department of State and USAID serving here at home and in our 260 diplomatic missions in 163 countries around the world are responsible for carrying out this Strategic Plan with the highest degree of integrity and professionalism.
With the Strategic Plan as our guide, the men and women of the Department of State and USAID will work to strengthen the global coalition against terrorism and help to stem the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. We will lead and sustain international efforts to rebuild Afghanistan and Iraq.
We will help American businesses succeed in foreign markets and help developing countries create conditions for investment and trade that can lift millions out of poverty. We will promote international respect for human rights and support new democracies. We will work to ensure that America remains at the forefront of international humanitarian relief efforts and the worldwide fight against infectious diseases like HIV/AIDS. We will forge partnerships throughout the world to combat international crime, including the illegal trade in drugs and the appalling business of trafficking in persons.
We will work to modernize and deepen our alliances and friendships around the globe, build cooperative relationships with former foes, and strive to bring peaceful ends to conflicts in troubled regions. We will assist American travelers and help to keep our homeland safe, even as we work to maintain the openness that gives our democracy its dynamism and attracts international tourists, scientists, scholars, immigrants, and businesspeople to our shores.
The wide scope of our tasks reflects the breadth of our mission. To perform it well, we must set priorities, and this Strategic Plan does just that. It lays out our foreign policy and development assistance priorities in the coming years, and by doing so, it promotes an organizational culture within the Department of State and USAID that values effectiveness and accountability. U.S. diplomacy and U.S. development assistance, like the United States itself, are forces for freedom throughout the world. Each and every day in the years ahead, the dedicated men and women of the Department of State and USAID will advance America's values and interests across the globe as they proudly serve on the frontlines of freedom.