Speaking to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the United States is pursuing a smart power approach to foreign policy, uplifting our civilian-led tools of diplomacy and development.
In its diplomacy, the U.S. is now reaching beyond governments to engage civil society and the private sector. Secretary Clinton echoed President Barack Obama’s message that the most effective development assistance strategy is offered in partnership, not patronage.
As President Obama made clear in his remarks at West Point, the military alone cannot complete the job in Afghanistan. So, in addition to sending thirty-thousand troops, the U.S. is tripling the number of civilians on the ground, for a total of 974 in early 2010, and looking to partner with Afghans on all aspects of our assistance programs. As Secretary Clinton recently testified before Congress, that civilian effort is already bearing fruit. Civilian experts and advisors are helping craft policy inside government ministries, providing development assistance in the field, and working in scores of other roles.
A close partnership with Pakistan, built on a foundation of common interests and common goals, is vitally important to regional long-term security for both countries. Therefore, the U.S. has begun to expand its civilian effort in Pakistan. Civilian programs aim to promote citizenship, strengthening institutions, building people-to-people ties, spurring economic development, expanding opportunity and safeguarding human rights.
The United States is establishing many private-public partnerships to pursue widely held goals. In Iraq, the U.S. has sponsored three technology delegations, including a recent visit by the CEO of Google, where he announced that Google would be digitizing the entire content of the Iraqi National Museum and launching an Iraqi government YouTube channel to promote transparency and good governance.
And, related to the new Food Security Initiative, which addresses a wide range of development issues, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the President's Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief joined with General Mills to improve the capacity of small and medium-sized food businesses across sub-Saharan Africa to produce food. This partnership will link the technical and business expertise of General Mills and up to nine additional companies with as many as two-hundred small and medium-sized mills and food processors in sub-Saharan African countries. This partnership will benefit an estimated 1.6 million smallholder farmers.
The U.S. will continue to promote diplomacy and development as powerful tools of foreign policy by strongly supporting civilian-led partnerships.