In recent remarks to foreign journalists, Secretary of State John Kerry emphasized the importance of U.S. engagement in some of the most difficult challenges our world faces.
On security, the United States led the effort to form a coalition of over 60 nations that is helping to stop ISIL after it swept across Iraq and Syria, taking over cities, destroying communities and murdering civilians.
After 35 years of diplomatic silence, the United States not only helped start negotiations with Iran, but led the effort that ensured that Iran’s nuclear program is and will remain, exclusively peaceful.
We continue to lead the fight against HIV AIDS. As a result, said Secretary Kerry, “Today, we’re on the brink of seeing the first generation of AIDS-free children being born in Africa, and that’s through PEPFAR, the United States program to help provide healthcare and change lives for people.”
When the recent Ebola epidemic first arose in West Africa, many predicted that it would claim as many as a million lives before it ran its course. But 3,000 U.S. troops, sent to West Africa by President Barack Obama, worked with personnel from many other nations to build up local healthcare capacity. “We summoned an international movement, and guess what? Those million people didn’t die,” said Secretary Kerry.
On climate change, the United States made a pact with China to that set an example of how to reduce emissions on a global basis, a move that helped set the stage for the signing of the Paris agreement. We helped craft the Kigali agreement that will end the production and use of hydrofluorocarbons. And we helped to set aside millions of square kilometers of ocean in the Antarctic, the Pacific and the Atlantic, to save our waters and fisheries.
“I have never seen the United States of America more engaged to the benefit of everybody else, in order to try to help other countries work their way through crises, to make peace and stability so we can go home and pay attention to things here,” said Secretary of State Kerry. “I’ve never seen us more engaged in more countries at one time on more issues of significance with greater consequence than now.”