Eleven Things You Should Know About Hillary
Secretary Clinton helped restore America’s leadership and standing in the world during a time of global challenges and changes. Secretary Clinton worked tirelessly to revitalize American diplomacy and strengthen alliances by traveling nearly a million miles for hundreds of meetings with foreign leaders in 112 countries. As America’s lead diplomat, Secretary Clinton understood the importance of engaging the public and took diplomacy directly to people around the world. Just as she was as a senator, Secretary Clinton was a workhorse, often taking on difficult challenges and addressing them directly around the world.
Secretary Clinton built and maintained a coalition to enact the toughest sanctions in Iran’s history. Secretary Clinton helped impose the toughest sanctions in Iran’s history by getting Russia and China on board. Even the Wall Street Journal editorial board noted that, “Clinton surely pulled out every stop to get Russia and particularly China…on board.” And as Howard Dean recently told CNN, “Hillary Clinton cranked up the sanctions for the first time under President Obama that actually made the Iranians come to the table.”
Secretary Clinton played an integral role in the New START Treaty with Russia. Secretary Clinton played an active role in reaching a missile reduction agreement with Russia, working to push it through the Senate and securing more than the necessary two-thirds majority. She entered the treaty into force in Munich with her Russian counterpart. As a result of the treaty’s passage, there will be fewer nuclear missile launchers. Simply put, the world is safer.
Secretary Clinton supported the raid that brought Osama bin Laden to justice. As NBC’s Brian Williams reported on his website, “Secretary of Defense Robert Gates recommended an air strike with no forces on the ground. CIA Director Panetta supported a raid by Special Forces and so did Secretary of State Clinton.”
Secretary Clinton helped avert all-out war in Gaza by negotiating a cease-fire between Israelis and Palestinians. In November 2012, after eight days of violence, Secretary Clinton negotiated a Gaza cease-fire with Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi. In an article titled “Hillary Clinton scores Gaza cease fire success,” Politico noted that, “Secretary of State Hillary Clinton got a Gaza cease-fire right at the moment hope seemed dead for a rapid end to the violence…”
Secretary Clinton played a role in bringing one war to an end and planning for the end of another. Working closely with Department of Defense colleagues and as part of the President’s national security team, Secretary Clinton played a role in the end of war in Iraq and in beginning a transition in Afghanistan, with all NATO allies having agreed to stand-up a post withdrawal support plan. As President Obama told 60 Minutes, it was “all a consequence of the great work that Hillary did and her team did and the State Department did in conjunction with our national security team.”
Secretary Clinton was critical in America’s “pivot to Asia” strategy. As Martin Indyk of the Brookings Institute wrote in Foreign Policy, “The ‘pivot’ to East Asia will probably be Obama’s most lasting strategic achievement… [but] it is Clinton’s too. She laid the groundwork, built the relationships, and developed the complex architecture of the new strategy — and she turned up at that pivotal moment in Vietnam in July 2010 to declare the U.S. commitment to the region.” Secretary Clinton earned praise for her work in opening up Burma, a place that had not been visited by a Secretary of State in 50 years.
Secretary Clinton worked to build the coalition to oust Qadhafi and stop massacres in Libya. As the Washington Post reported upon the end of NATO operations in Libya, “U.S. officials and key allies are offering a detailed new defense of the approach and Clinton’s pivotal role – both within a divided Cabinet and a fragile, assembled-on-the-fly international alliance. What emerges from these accounts is a picture of Clinton using her mixture of political pragmatism and tenacity to referee spats among NATO partners, secure crucial backing from Arab countries and tutor rebels on the fine points of message management.”
Secretary Clinton engaged in economic statecraft. Secretary Clinton’s focus on economic engagement resulted in increased investment through three new free trade agreements (Colombia, Panama and South Korea) and 15 Open Skies agreements including with Japan, Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Israel.
Secretary Clinton brought the State Department into the 21st Century. Secretary Clinton helped the State Department adapt to emerging issues such as cyber security by creating the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications to combat Al-Qaeda’s growing influence online. She recognized the important role of energy in U.S. foreign policy and helped create the Bureau of Energy Resources to protect our energy infrastructure and influence how nations move to cleaner fuel.
Secretary Clinton elevated the cause of women’s rights to new heights. Secretary Clinton recognized women’s rights as a major foreign policy issue. It is, according to Newsweek, the area of “hardships faced by women and girls across the world–that her impact has been most profound.” Hillary convinced the White House to allow her to create a new position at the State Department: Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues. Newsweek continued, “Across the world, in diverse and deeply reactionary cultures, Clinton and [Ambassador-at-Large] Verveer have spoken and fought to liberalize attitudes on women’s role in the economy, girls’ schooling, women’s health, domestic violence, issues arising from war and conflict, and myriad other concerns.”