Secretary of State Clinton and Secretary of Defense Gates discuss the reach, limitations, and effective use of American power in Washington, D.C., October 2009. ©AFP Image
Diplomacy 3.0 is an ambitious multi-year hiring program that recognizes diplomacy as one of the three essential pillars of U.S. foreign policy: diplomacy, development, and defense. To return diplomacy to the forefront in achieving foreign policy goals, Secretary Clinton has a plan, dependent on continuing budget support, to increase the Department’s Foreign Service personnel by 25% by the year 2013 with a 13% increase in Civil Service over the same period. In FY 2010, for example, we hired 1,220 new Foreign Service employees which was 732 new hires above attrition.
Overseas, we need more and better-trained Foreign Service personnel to work in critical fields like post-conflict stabilization and reconstruction and to address the many challenges posed by failed and failing states. Domestically, the Department needs more personnel as well, especially in those areas that directly support overseas posts and operations. Without more personnel, the Department cannot build a “training float,” i.e., sufficient personnel to both train and staff positions. This is especially important with regard to longer-term training, e.g., in critical languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, Hindi, and Urdu, that require one or two years. Meeting an expanding mission and properly staffing overseas posts, many of which are either difficult or dangerous, requires more personnel trained in the various skills demanded of “smart” diplomacy in the 21st Century.
The Department is very focused on finding and attracting people who have the critical skills needed, and our outreach is targeted to a talented, diverse pool of candidates.