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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Former Secretary Clinton's Remarks


Hillary Rodham Clinton served as the 67th Secretary of State of the United States from January 21, 2009 to February 1, 2013.

In her confirmation testimony, Hillary Rodham Clinton said: "The best way to advance America's interests in reducing global threats and seizing global opportunities is to design and implement global solutions. ...We must use what has been called "smart power," the full range of tools at our disposal -- diplomatic, economic, military, political, legal and cultural -- picking the right tool or combination of tools for each situation. With smart power, diplomacy will be the vanguard of our foreign policy."

On arrival for her first day as Secretary of State, she addressed Department employees: "There are three legs to the stool of American foreign policy: defense, diplomacy, and development. And we are responsible for two of the three legs. And we will make clear, as we go forward, that diplomacy and development are essential tools in achieving the long-term objectives of the United States. And I will do all that I can, working with you, to make it abundantly clear that robust diplomacy and effective development are the best long-term tools for securing America's future."

At the release of the first Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review, the Secretary said:  "The QDDR is a blueprint for how we can make the State Department and USAID more nimble, more effective, and more accountable, a blueprint for how our country can lead in a changing world through the use of what I call “civilian power” – the combined force of all of the civilians across the United States Government who practice diplomacy, carry out development projects, and act to prevent and respond to crisis and conflict."


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