Military force may sometimes be necessary, but diplomacy and development are equally important in creating peaceful, stable and prosperous conditions - that's the conclusion of the U.S. Department of State.
In a recently released fact sheet introducing American "Smart Power" with emphasis on diplomacy and development, the State Department notes that the world faces many challenges, including ongoing wars, regional conflicts, global economic crisis, weapons of mass destruction, worldwide poverty, food insecurity, pandemic diseases, climate change, and terrorism. The U.S. believes that the essence of smart power is to use the full range of statecraft, including diplomatic, economic, military, political, legal, and cultural; and to pick the right tool, or a combination of tools, for each situation.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is pursuing a foreign policy guided by principles and tempered by pragmatism. The State Department is working to find global and regional solutions to the world’s most pressing problems by co-operating and collaborating with other nations and organizations. "Even if we disagree with some governments," the State Department notes in the fact sheet, "America shares a bond of common humanity with the people of every nation, and we work to invest in that common humanity."
Development and human rights are integral parts of "Smart Power." More than two billion people worldwide live on less than two dollars a day, and many suffer daily violations of their dignity and human rights. Economic and social development and the promotion of human rights worldwide, especially for women and girls, are essential to U.S. foreign policy.
The State Department seeks to be disciplined in evaluating foreign policy choices; weighing the costs and consequences of action or inaction; gauging the probability of success; and insisting on measurable results. A full range of statecraft will include negotiation, persuasion and the use of leverage; cooperating with military partners and other agencies of government; partnership with non-government-agencies, the private sector and international organizations; and uses of modern technologies for public outreach.
"American democracy continues to inspire people worldwide," the State Department concludes. "U.S. influence is greatest when we live up to our own ideals. The Obama Administration aims to make the United States an exemplar of our own values."