Posts tagged ‘Hillary Rodham Clinton’

Meet the Clintons: Agents of the New World Order ………..

http://www.sott.net

James Corbett
The Corbett Report
Wed, 10 Oct 2012 05:51

Shameless liars. Committed globalists. Inveterate womanizers. Unrepentant drug runners. Unconvicted money launderers. Fake humanitarians. And two of the most popular politicians in America. Meet the Clintons.

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Hillary Clinton: Profile of Imperial Arrogance and Lawlessness ………….

Stephen Lendman, Contributor
Activist Post

pic from : www.judiciaryreport.com

She was Washington’s 67th Secretary of State. She served from January 21, 2009 – February 1, 2013. She’s arguably America’s worst.

From 2001 – 2009, she was US Senator from New York. In 2008, she challenged Obama for the Democrat party’s presidential nomination.

Supporters urge her to run again in 2016. She’s noncommittal. When asked, she says “I am not thinking about anything like that right now.”

She also said she’ll “do everything (she) can to make sure that women compete at the highest levels, not only in the United States but around the world.”

Husband Bill urges her to run. Some suspect she already made her move.

With or without her support, a “Ready for Hillary” political action committee was formed. It’s raising money for 2016. Campaigning never ends. America’s electoral season is seamless.

Hillary for 2016 T-shirts are on sale. Friends of Hillary Facebook send regular messages. When launching her 2008 campaign, she said “I’m in to win.” Insiders say she hasn’t changed her mind. In 2016, she’ll be 69.

In December, she scored high in public approval. A Washington Post/ABC News poll showed 57% of Americans support her presidential ambitions. Over 80% of Democrats back her candidacy.

Two-thirds of US women do. Two-thirds of Americans give her high marks as America’s top diplomat. She scored higher than any previous Secretary of State in 20 years of polling.

In four years, she visited 112 countries. She traveled nearly a million miles. She self-promoted everywhere. She has larger than life ambitions.

She’s gone from State. She’s very much still involved. The New York Times profiled her. She’s “at the peak of her influence,” it said. She’s “an instant presidential front-runner.”

She’s got lots of time to pursue her goal. “We need a new architecture for this new world,” she says.

Obama exceeded the worst of George Bush. Clinton joined his war cabinet. She’s ideologically hardline. She was a Wellesley College Goldwater Girl. She was president of Wellesley’s Young Republicans.

She’s militantly pro-war. In the 1990s, she was very much part of husband Bill’s foreign policy team. As an aggressive first lady, she had lots of influence.

She was influential in getting Madeleine Albright appointed Secretary of State in 1997. They consulted with each other often.

In her memoirs, Albright described their relationship as an “unprecedented partnership.”

“I was once asked whether it was appropriate for the two of us to work together so closely,” she added. “I agreed that it was a departure from tradition.”

At Secretary of State, Clinton headed foreign policy. She’s complicit in crimes of war and against humanity. She represents the worst of imperial arrogance. She a reliable spear-carrier.

Her outbursts reflect bullying and bluster, not diplomacy. She’s contemptuous of rule of law principles. She scorns democracy. She’s committed to war, not peace.

She’s unabashedly hawkish. As first lady, she urged husband Bill to bomb Belgrade in 1999. She ignored international and constitutional law. She lied about Slobodan Milosevic.

“You cannot let this go on at the end of a century that has seen the major holocaust of our time,” she said. “What do we have NATO for if not to defend our way of life?”

For 78 days, NATO ravaged Yugoslavia. Nearly everything targeted was struck. Massive destruction and disruption followed. An estimated $100 billion in damage was inflicted. A humanitarian disaster resulted. Environmental contamination was extensive.

Large numbers were killed, injured or displaced. Two million people lost their livelihoods. Homes and communities were destroyed.

Nobel laureate Harold Pinter called NATO’s aggression “barbaric (and despicable), another blatant and brutal assertion of US power using NATO as its missile (to consolidate) American domination of Europe.”

Lawless aggression became humanitarian intervention. An avenue to Eurasia was opened. A permanent US military presence was established. American imperialism claimed another trophy.

Clinton’s unabashedly pro-war. She’s a war goddess. Straightaway post-9/11, she urged waging war on terror.

She said any nation lending Al Qaeda “aid and comfort will now face the wrath of our country. I’ll stand behind Bush for a long time to come.”

She supported annual defense (aka war) budgets. She voted for the PATRIOT Act and other police state legislation. She endorsed cluster bomb use in civilian areas and refugee camps.

She’s against banning land mines. She’s dismissive of human suffering. Wealth, power, privilege and dominance alone matter.

In 2005, she was one of only six Democrat senators opposed to blocking deployment of untested missile defense systems. They’re first-strike offensive weapons.

She supported restriction-free nuclear cooperation with Israel and other US allies violating NPT provisions. She endorsed nuclear weapons use in Afghanistan and Pakistan. She calls them deterrents that “keep the peace.”

She was one of the largest recipients of defense contractor cash. She backed war on Afghanistan and Iraq. She opposed a Democrat resolution. It would have required Bush to try diplomacy before launching war in 2003.

Her 2002 Senate speech supported war. She lied. She said:

intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein rebuilt his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program.

He has given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members….It is clear that if left unchecked, (he’ll) continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons.

Should he succeed in that endeavor, he could alter the political and security landscape of the Middle East, which as we know all too well affects American security.

Now this much is undisputed.

What’s undisputed were her bald-faced lies. She repeated them ad nauseam as Secretary of State.

She supports the worst of Israeli lawlessness. At AIPAC’s 2008 convention, she said:

The United States stands with Israel now and forever. We have shared interests….shared ideals….common values. I have a bedrock commitment to Israel’s security. (Against Islamic extremists), our two nations are fighting a shared threat.

I strongly support Israel’s right to self-defense (and) believe America should aid in that defense.

I am committed to making sure that Israel maintains a military edge to meet increasing threats.

The only threats Israel faces are ones it invents.

I am deeply concerned about the growing threat in Gaza (and) Hamas’ campaign of terror.

She lied saying its charter “calls for the destruction of Israel.”

She lied again saying “Iran threatens to destroy Israel.”

She lied a third time, saying “I support calling the Iranian Revolutionary Guard what it is: a terrorist organization. It is imperative that we get both tough and smart about dealing with Iran before it is too late.”

She backs “massive retaliation” if Iran attacks Israel. In 2008, presidential aspirant Clinton said:

I want the Iranians to know that if I’m president, we will attack Iran. In the next 10 years, during which they might foolishly consider launching an attack on Israel, we would be able to totally obliterate them.

In other words, she threatened to murder 75 million people. Today it’s nearly 80 million. She’s extremist on all foreign policy issues. She favors police state harshness domestically.
She endorses outsized military budgets. She’s done nothing to contain nuclear proliferation. She supported Bush’s unilateral nuclear first-strike option, including against non-nuclear state.
She represents the worst of America’s dark side. She’s a war criminal multiple times over. She’s arguably America’s most shameless ever Secretary of State.

She’s clearly the most brazen. Her language and attitude exceed the worst Cold War rhetoric.

Her take-no-prisoners thinking, character, and demagoguery tell all. She’s addicted to self-aggrandizement and diktat authority.

She relishes death, destruction, and war spoils.

She’s indifferent to human suffering. She’s a monument to wrong over right. She’s a disgrace and embarrassment to her country, position and humanity.

She may become America’s 45th president. Perhaps she won’t get a chance to try. Humanity may not survives its 44th. The fullness of time will tell.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. His new book is titled How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War. Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening. http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour/

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BOMBSHELL: Clinton Directed False Flag in Benghazi to Instigate WW III in Middle East ………..

Friday, October 5, 2012 12:06

Here’s what everyone needs to know about evidence surfaced by Investigative Journalist Susanne Posel of OccupyCorporatism.com: (a) The so-called “EMBASSY” in Benghazi which was attacked on 9-11 by an angry mob, is not even listed by the US State Department as an Embassy, Consulate or Diplomatic Mission.  It was a CIA run safe house used to negotiate gun trafficking of Libyan arms to Syria.   (b) So-called Ambassador Stevens presented his diplomatic credentials in public, but was secretly operating to facilitate the supply of guns to Syria via the CIA’s covert military force; Al Qaeda.

Clinton Directed False Flag in Benghazi to Instigate WW III in Middle East

Susanne Posel
Occupy Corporatism
October 5, 2012

US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, is trying to buy time after having been questioned about the planned attack and coordinated US-sponsored al-Qaeda use to facilitate the murder of the late US Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.

Except, there was no US Embassy in Benghazi. There was a “diplomatic office” or CIA-compound which was burned to the ground. The nearest US Embassy to the area is in Tripoli.

Stevens, hardly being a US Ambassador, but rather a gunrunner for the behind the scenes terroristic attacks by the Saudi Arabian nation on the Islamic world. Saudi Arabia adheres to Salafism, an extremist form of Islam that want all other forms of the religion wiped off the map. Stevens was ultimately killed by the same group he had provided guns and other armory for when they were employed by the US to commit the false flag attack on the CIA-compound in Benghazi.

The Government Accountability Office has threatened in a recent report to evaluate Clinton’s role in the attack. Diplomatic Security, which is the responsibility of the US State Department, is compromised if Clinton will allow coerced attacks using US-operatives masquerading as Islamic terrorists for the purpose of committing a flase flag to instigate war with Middle Eastern nations.

Clinton, trying to appear to be concerned about the event, vowed publicly to “find those responsible for the attack.” She said: “There are continuing questions about what exactly happened in Benghazi on that night three weeks ago. We will not rest until we answer those questions and until we track down the terrorists who killed our people.”

However, Clinton had connections to the orchestrated bombing that occurred on the anniversary of September 11th terrorist attacks where al-Qaeda was used as a scapegoat for the deaths of thousands of American citizens in one of the biggest state-sponsored false flags in US history.

Coinciding with Stevens’ death multiple waves of manufactured Muslim uprisings seemed to validate the terrorist attack. A US-funded film was created with the assistance of an FBI-informant who just happened to be an Israeli citizen. Over 100 Jewish donors gave money to have this “wag the dog” trailer produced so that the Islamic riots would have a purpose.

Creating spin to further convolute the issue, Clinton remarked: “We have a lot of work to do to give complete and accurate responses to all the questions and statements that are swirling out there. Let’s establish all the facts before we jump to any conclusions.”

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was deployed to Tripoli, where the actual US Embassy is located. The crime scene in Benghazi was left to be destroyed by CIA-operatives dressed up as rioters to contaminate the evidence.

The State Department claims that cryptic warnings of an impending attack on Benghazi was relayed, yet devoid of a time frame and therefore ignored. In response, Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and Jason Chaffetz, House Representative of Utah are demanding an investigation and that Clinton explain the actions of the State Department in the time up and until the coordinated attack.

According to the letter from Issa to Clinton: “Based on information provided to the Committee by individuals with direct knowledge of events in Libya, the attack that claimed the ambassador’s life was the latest in a long line of attacks on Western diplomats and officials in Libya in the months leading up to September 11, 2012. It was clearly never, as Administration officials once insisted, the result of a popular protest,” the committee’s chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and subcommittee chairman, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, write. “In addition, multiple U.S. federal government officials have confirmed to the Committee that, prior to the September 11 attack, the U.S. mission in Libya made repeated requests for increased security in Benghazi. The mission in Libya, however, was denied these resources by officials in Washington.”

Stevens, having no idea that he was about to be sacrificed by the US government for the sake of a false flag attack, was not concerned about utilizing security in the days before the bombing. In fact, Clinton authorized the security to be lessened in Benghazi and the US Marines guarding the US Embassy in Tripoli to be disarmed.

Clinton wrote back to Issa, saying: “I appreciate that you and your committee are deeply interested in finding out what happened leading up to and during the attacks in Benghazi, and are looking for ways to prevent it from happening again. I share that commitment.” She asked Issa to allow that any summations of the event at Benghazi be held off until November, after the elections, or perhaps into 2013 because witnesses were being questioned at the State Department’s Office of Legislative Affairs. This must be a request to defer the issue until Clinton and their lackeys can get their stories straight.

To keep the truth that the attack on Benghazi was a US-backed false flag, documents at the compound were destroyed just prior to the attack. This act mirrors the sudden shredding of documents at the US Embassy in Beirut that destroyed classified information. These documents showed the names of Libyans who were working with the US as well as oil contracts and information regarding the coordinated attack. Clinton was in contact with the al-Qaeda operatives who attacked the compound in Benghazi and murdered Stevens just 48 hours before the event was enacted.

Publicly, the US State Department denies this fact by refusing to comment. The compound in Benghazi that was burned by al-Qaeda operatives was looted to make sure all evidence was removed before the press, residents of Libya or any official could gain access to the buildings. The compound in Benghazi was a safe-house that Stevens would have fled to during an emergency situation. Knowing this, Clinton combined fake revolutionaries with CIA-operatives to create a situation that could be spun to serve the purpose of the US and Israel in destroying the sovereign nations in the Middle East.

Last month Clinton admitted that al-Qaeda was used in the attack in Benghazi. Speaking to the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Clinton stated that al-Qaeda was employed to facilitate a manufactured threat of Islamic extremism in the region. Clinton explains: “Now with a larger safe haven and increased freedom to maneuver, terrorists are seeking to extend their reach and their networks in multiple directions. And they are working with other violent extremists to undermine the democratic transitions under way in North Africa, as we tragically saw in Benghazi.”

In line with the US version of the story, Israeli “intelligence” reported that “This attack , along with the one in Egypt, is a reminder of the Iranian invasion of a U.S. embassy in Tehran that led to a lengthy hostage crisis which brought down the [President Jimmy] Carter administration.”

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Psycho Hillary and one of its Zionist Master announced publicly that they want to – DESTROY Iran (even laugh) ……………

30 Nations Meet in Tehran for Alternative to Hillary Clinton’s Attack on Syria ………….

Voltaire Network | 14 August 2012

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PressTV has conducted an interview with Dr. Webster Griffin Tarpley, author and historian, to further discuss the issue. The following is a rough transcription of the interview.

Press TV: France is the first country to officially commit its military to the Syria situation. Is this a parallel to the role France played in Libya?

Tarpley: President Hollande has been a target of a very vigorous campaign by the reactionaries and colonialists in France, people around Sarkozy and including Sarkozy himself, demanding that Hollande take the lead as the aggressor in Syria. I think it’s a kind of a desperation tactic to keep something going when it’s not going.

Today we’ve had Hillary Clinton visiting Turkey. In her meeting with Foreign Minister Davutoglu, they talked about a no-fly zone that the United States and Turkey, perhaps with other countries, would somehow try to impose a no-fly zone over Syria which, of course, would mean a war.

Brennan, the anti-terror Czar of the Obama White House had talked about a no-fly zone earlier this week at a meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations. It’s not clear whether that’s just talk, whether that’s bluffing. Given the track record of these people, we would have to take it very serious, indeed.

Press TV: On another front, the US secretary of State Hillary Clinton has come out saying Washington and Ankara are working on a detailed military and intelligence operation hopefully to bring a regime change in Syria. Do you think it’s going to work?

Tarpley: No, I think this is a somewhat desperate plan now.

I think the big turning point actually occurred yesterday. The Tehran consultative conference on Syria, it seems to me, is a landmark event in our times. 30 countries coming together on the basis, I would say, of national dependence and national dignity.

Not much more than that but that’s already a lot in today’s world, and certainly organized by the Iranian foreign ministry with the presence of Russia, China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Venezuela, Sudan, a very important selection of countries across the world.

It obviously shows that Syria is not isolated in a way that Hillary Clinton says. This is really the first time that we’ve had a kind of task-oriented, anti-imperialist conference.

It’s very interesting here in the United States, the media has not a word about this. It’s a complete blackout. I’ve looked at the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the television stations, there’s nothing about this conference.

I think the US State Department is freaked out because this is a huge defeat for Hillary Clinton. What is Hillary Clinton’s diplomacy worth if 30 countries including about half the world when you get down to it, can come together on a pro-Syrian, pro-independence platform?

It seems to me that the imperialists are probably getting desperate. This is of course the classic time when they resort either to some kind of Gulf of Tonkin incidence, something military, or the classic false flag that we’ve seen them play so many times.

Press TV: Of course, Libya did not have this support in the situation at the time. However, how can one explain the US double standards on Syria compared with its role in Bahrain and Yemen? Why is the Western public opinion silent on the atrocities committed against the civilians by the so-called Free Syrian Army, in your opinion?

Tarpley: I don’t think there’s total silence here in the West. I think there’s an awareness and it’s a growing awareness. Obviously, the first part of your question, this is hypocrisy.

What I think we’re getting towards now is a situation where you have to frankly admit there are two blocks of states. There’s an imperialist block with the US, the British, NATO, the Israelis and so forth; but then there’s an anti-imperialist block which is very large and quite formidable when you’ve got Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Indonesia. That’s already a great deal.

Let me also focus on the Pakistani Foreign Minister, Mrs. Khar, who I think made a landmark statement of her own: it’s time now to reject, very categorically, any idea of foreign intervention into Syria.

This leaves the US in a terrible predicament. We have to see how they’re going to get out and it might be some ugly surprises.

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Hillary Clinton Threatens Syria with “Catastrophic Assault” that Would Smash the Syrian State ………

Webster G. Tarpley, Ph.D.
PressTVPressTV
July 9, 2012

PressTV talked with author and historian, Dr. Webster Griffin Tarpley to further discuss the issue. The following is an approximate transcription of the interview.

Press TV: An unwilling opposition that sees regime change as it is the only objective, whatever happened to [the Syrian National Council] SNC’s promises for democracy?

Tarpley: Well, this is a group, the Syrian National Council, so-called, self-styled, of adventurers and international con artists, I guess we would say, who see their lives as a never ending succession of conferences in expensive hotels and they are jetting around the world, from Cairo to Istanbul to Paris, to all of these different meetings and naturally they are carrying out their orders.

The orders coming from NATO, from Hillary Clinton, from [William] Hague, from [Laurent] Fabius and the rest of them don’t have a deal, NATO doesn’t want a peaceful solution of the internal problems of Syria, they want the issue, they want the issue kept alive, they want continuing violence, continuing civil wars, so that they can use it eventually, if the conditions obtain, for an aggression, for coalition of the willing, an armed attack, a no-fly zone followed by regime change.

So there is no surprise that the Syrian National Council carries out the orders of the people who are paying them.

They are a group of foreign puppets who are dedicated to aggression. I would call special attention to the raving remarks by Hillary Clinton. In the past week we’ve heard her say; Russia and China have to be made to pay a heavy price for their refusal to sanction aggression against Syria.

But now over the weekend we have entered a realm of absolute delirium, where Hillary Clinton says “time is running out for Syria to avoid,” and I quote, “a catastrophic assault,” a catastrophic assault which would threaten to destroy the Syrian state.

Now, that is [a] very clear language of threat of force, force and the use of force are frowned on by the UN charter, but here it is and it is also coming from a nuclear state against a non-nuclear state.

It makes everybody wonder what is the purpose of the Non-Proliferation Treaty [NPT], if you can have nuclear states making these bloodcurdling threats to non-nuclear states.

But again, ‘catastrophic assault,’ it sounds like we will reduce you to total chaos, war lords, mini states, macro states, the collapse of civilization. That seems to be what Hillary Clinton is threatening.

Press TV: Now as you said, it does seem that the opposition does not have much of an incentive to put down its arms and talk of peace but this is also blatant disregard of Kofi Annan’s six-point peace plan, now isn’t it? Where does it leave Kofi Annan’s six-point peace plan that was much touted?

Tarpley: Well, I do not want to spend too much time commiserating about the fate of Kofi Annan because I think he was acting really in bad faith the entire time.

This was never designed even from his point of view to bring about peace but rather to create conditions where regime change could be engineered; it is just that the solid front of Russia and China in the Security Council has essentially blocked the path that he would have been happy to take, at least in my view.

We should also look; the danger here is [that] July 2012 could turn into another July about a hundred years ago, July 1914.

We have just had over this weekend two competing naval exercises in the Mediterranean; one is the NATO Standing Maritime Group two, I believe it is, coming from Istanbul and the Bosporus and the Dardanelles in Turkey that is with three frigates, one Turkish, one German, one French, but at the same time the Syrians have held their, rather, wide, large-scale drills both land and sea and what they are drilling was the defense of Syria against an amphibious attack from the eastern Mediterranean, so there is a war scenario developing right there.

We have also got the Turkish army remaining in a, relatively, high alert status all along the Syrian border, we have those rumors of Saudi special forces being allowed to traverse the territory of Jordan, so that they would threaten Syria from the south. So we literally remain poised on the verge of a regional tragedy.

I would also point to Putin’s biennial meeting with the diplomatic corps in Moscow where he tells the diplomats assembled in Moscow, you should be ready for any outcome including the most unfavorable; that is not very rhetorical but think about what the most unfavorable outcome could be.

Press TV: But Dr. Tarpley what does that imply because the SNC [the so-called Syrian National Council] is calling for regime change, the West and its allies are already eyeing a Libyan-style NATO bombardment of Syria and the voice of the Syrians continues to go unheard?

Tarpley: Yes, that is of course true, it seems to be the scenario is likely the one that we have heard about over the last month or so.

It is a Coup d’état, assisted by electronic means; in other words we have these continuing reports that Ben Rhodes in the Obama White House, in the National Security Council has arranged that at a certain point for the CIA and NATO to take over Nile Sat, Arab Sat; kick off the Syrian state television, al-Dunya television and other pro-Syrian television organizations and replace that with completely fake programming, showing the flight of Assad out of the country, the entry of rebel death squad forces into the downtown squares of Damascus and Aleppo and Homs, attacks on the presidential palace and so forth, all fake.

At various sound stages either in Saudi Arabia or in Qatar, so the methods that were used last year in Libya, ‘the Operation Mermaid Dawn’ could now be attempted, so that NATO could then argue that there is an internal Coup d’etat going on and whatever NATO would do at that point would be invited in, by a group claiming to be the government of Syria.

It is a very dangerous game now, because they have responsive Russia, China and others is completely unpredictable.

So this is essentially brinkmanship now, we are at the area of brinksmanship at least in terms of a regional war.

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Hillary Clinton Exposed, Movie She Banned From Theaters – Full ………..

The lies of those unable to destroy the Syrian strength ……………….

http://www.voltairenet.org

JPEG - 120.9 kb

News Analysis

The lies of those unable to destroy the Syrian strength
By Ghaleb KANDIL

Syria was never the center of the universe as much as it is today. All around the world, hundreds of pieces of information and thousands of reports, rumors, fabricated pictures and made up news are emerging via media networks that are shedding light on contradictory positions and statements of senior Western officials. At this level, the Russian government is finding itself forced to issue quasi daily statements to deny many rumors and clarify the falsification affecting the positions of its officials.

Firstly, the American empire is doing its best to push the bitter cup away from it, i.e. the recognition of its defeat in the face of the Syrian state. Indeed, it is aware of what this recognition will generate in terms of the total collapse that will affect the governments collaborating with it in the region, and the repercussions whose prices will be paid by those involved in the global war it is leading against the Syrian national state and against a resisting liberation leader who defied American arrogance back when the whole world was under its control. Today, this leader’s status is similar to that of Fidel Castro in the fifties and sixties of last century. Despite the opportunity offered by Russia to the US to indirectly recognize the defeat, the American empire deployed all its efforts to sustain the violence on the ground, and exploited the Syrian state’s cooperation with Annan’s initiative to obstruct its effects via the Gulf and Turkish governments, Al-Qaeda, and other formations linked to that alliance such as the Lebanese Future Movement.

Secondly, the Western propaganda machine is spreading a massive amount of lies in regard to the Syrian situation, with the main goal of generating a climate that would compensate for the state of impotence endured by the Americans and all the NATO member states, in light of the regional and international balances and equations that are providing Syria with immunity. The first lie is the promotion of a settlement allowing President Bashar al-Assad to step down. At this level, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov exposed the rumor surrounding the existence of Russian-American negotiations over what is dubbed by the West “Syria in the post Al-Assad stage.” In reality, the American planners among others know that president Bashar al-Assad enjoys wide support in the ranks of the Syrian people and that this support has increased in light of the crisis sweeping the country, as well as its repercussions which are making the Syrians feel as though they and their country are being subjected to a foreign attack led by the Americans against the state. Hence, according to his people, President Bashar al-Assad is the head of the national state, the advocator of a pan-Arab resistance project and the symbol of Syrian nationalism and the resistance option in the face of the foreign attack which features a global alliance aiming at destroying the Syrian strength and at strengthening the gangs of mercenaries, intelligence agents and extremists. The inhabitants of the Syrian countryside have discovered that the latter could not be farther from the slogans of freedom and dignity, and that they have started to introduce foreign murderers by the hundreds, professional intelligence elements and extremist groups whose presence and role had always been rejected by Syrian society.

Thirdly, the second lie being promoted by the American propaganda is related to the claim that what is happening in Syria might slide towards civil war. The Western propaganda at this level was launched in the form of warnings against the threat of civil war, at a time when all the Western, Turkish and Gulf efforts have been pushing in that direction since the beginning of the incidents, through repeated attempts to depict the events as being a sectarian conflict and the adoption by the West and its agents in the region of the MB group and the gangs of takfir to which they offered all possible financial, military and media facilitations and assistance. The Syrian people on the other hand proved to be immune against these attempts, while the Syrian national state was able to maintain a wide base of popular support, to embrace its army and its national choices and engage in a battle to defend the country and the unity of the people alongside Syrian political and religious leaders.

Fourthly, the third lie was the claim that the conflict between the Syrian state and the terrorist gangs was revolving in a vicious circle and that it would be impossible to settle this confrontation. However, the reality which was confirmed by the events is that this issue is primarily linked to the approach adopted by the Syrian state in dealing with the strongholds of the armed men, through an insistence on sparing the Syrian people as many losses as possible. Hence, just like the situation was settled in Baba Amr based on the state’s decision and timing, the situation was settled in the town of Al-Haffa and the action is ongoing to liquidate the remaining strongholds and dens in the city of Homs. In the meantime, the Syrian Arab forces achieved decisive progress in the border regions with Turkey and Lebanon where the armed gangs tried to impose their control. This reveals that the issue is not about the Syrian state’s ability, but about the timing it chooses and the issuance of the orders to the army which has not yet used even a portion of its strength in crushing the armed rebellion. These efforts eventually aim at reaching disarmament, after the state gave the armed men all possible opportunities to surrender their weapons peacefully and offered incentives which pushed thousands among them to cooperate with the governmental calls during the last couple of months since the launching of Annan’s missions.

Fifthly, the fourth lie which was recently promoted focused on the attempt to revive the illusion regarding the possibility of launching war on Syria through the presentation of scenarios for military strikes carried out by the American troops and NATO following the collapse of other deceptive tales about direct Turkish war against Syria. At the level of this scenario, all the strategic facts that have become known stress that such an adventure could lead to a great confrontation around the world and in the region, which could cause Israel to pay the price. In the meantime, the new international balances and the aggressiveness of the Russian-Chinese performance are acquiring credibility, to the point where Henry Kissinger assured that an attack on Syria could trigger a global war in which no one in the West can engage and whose consequences would be extremely difficult to bear for a thousand and one reasons.

Lies are the American tools in the context of the psychological war to compensate for the inability of the colonial alliance to confront the resistance launched by Syria, as a population, an army and a state led by Al-Assad to defend its freedom and independence. It would be enough to look at the Istanbul council, i.e. the collaborating front that has no political slogan but the call for NATO’s occupation of Syria, along with the gangs, that include thieves, murderers and thugs. In the meantime, reform which is led by the Syrian state is proceeding in accordance with the project that is open to dialogue with all the opposition movements under the auspices of President Al-Assad.

The tendency

Egypt and the ongoing political turmoil

Regardless of the results of the Egyptian presidential elections which will be held on Saturday and Sunday between MB candidate Mohammad Morsi and former Prime Minister under Mubarak’s rule Ahmad Shafik, it is clear that the American engineering of the balances requires the obstruction of the rise of the Egyptian strength and the renewal of the pressures aiming at sustaining political turmoil for as long as possible. In case the MB candidate wins, the confrontation will continue in the context of the conflict over power between the MB organization and the military institution. The arena of the conflict will be the drafting of a new constitution, and this was clear in light of the determination of the military institution to open the door before the reorganization of the legislative elections via a decision by the Supreme Court to annul the membership of one third of the members of the recently elected People’s Assembly.

In case Shafik is elected president, he will be the military council’s ally, and will practically lead to the renewal of the popular actions under the slogan of preventing the return of the former regime. The MB command’s inclination to monopolize power and engage in deals with the Americans in regard to the protection of the Camp David accord, rendered it impossible to form a wide scale political alliance that would allow Morsi to earn the support of the influential popular bloc whose real size emerged in the first round of the presidential elections, via the votes acquired by the nationalist candidates and especially candidates Hamdin Sabahi and Abdul Monem Abu al-Foutouh. This is why the call for a partnership appeared to be a request for a full assignment and full submission to the MB.

The MB organization is trying to get the support of the popular blocs looking for change, by borrowing and summoning the slogans of the revolution, at a time when suspicions are surrounding the positions and choices of the MB leaders within the organization itself. At this level, the last few months revealed the dubious character of the policy advocated by the MB leaders, in light of the adoption of political recipes and action plans going against the slogans which characterized Morsi’s electrical campaign. Moreover, the MB command used a thousand pretexts to justify its commitment to the protection of Camp David and its attempt to reach a deal with the Americans who drew up plans aiming at maintaining the Egyptian political scene within the context of the army-MB duo. Clearly, the popular weight of the so-called remnants of the regime is not to be taken lightly, and this was revealed by the votes earned by Shafik and Amr Moussa. Hence, the confrontation between these two main directions is keeping the game within the general restraints that are taking into account the American interest in preventing the emergence of a new political reality at the level of the Egyptian state headed by the national wing, one which was represented in the presidential elections by more than one candidate during the first round and whose weight was clearly greater – by comparison – than the support earned by the MB organization.

Morsi, is not distant from the bloc which includes the military council and the influential bureaucratic groups in the Egyptian state, usually dubbed the remnants. Indeed, a recent American report revealed that throughout five years under Mubarak’s rule, Morsi was in charge of coordination between the MB command and the state security apparatus. On the ground, the American arrangement is that in case Shafik is elected, he would coexist with the MB’s role at the People’s Assembly, the government and the Constituent Assembly tasked with the drafting of the constitution, based on the understandings secured by the American officials with the International Organization of the Muslim Brotherhood and the ongoing wager on the activation of Turkish-Qatari influence over the group’s leaders in Egypt. But if Morsi wins, the staging of the People’s Assembly elections – according to all experts- will introduce new balances with the emergence of the bloc led by Shafik and Amr Moussa as a power which the Americans and their allies in the region are trying to transform into a political party that would be a partner in the Egyptian equation and in the competition against the MB in any upcoming legislative elections.

The confrontation in Egyptian society is ongoing between three main blocs. There is the MB organization which is characterized by an opportunistic behavior practiced by its political command in order to reach power at whichever price, while willing to conduct all the required tradeoffs for that end. There is also the state bureaucracy led by the military council. This bloc enjoys wide influence in society through a base of millions of employees in the various state apparatuses, including the judges who are being polarized under the slogan of Egypt’s non-surrender to the MB and the sustainment of a political approach based on the protection of the relations with the West and the Arab states affiliated with Western influence in the Gulf. As to the third bloc, which is still un-organized until now and is facing the challenge of becoming a unified political power, it includes all the popular nationalistic and revolutionary forces that are adopting the option of social and political change, resistance against Western colonial hegemony over Egypt, the toppling of the camp David accord and the ending of the siege on Gaza. The Egyptian presidential elections will not settle the conflict over power, rather constitute one of the stops along its course. Egypt’s future will thus witness more battles between the three main blocs that are acting on the ground and at the level of the institutions, ones which will witness labors, changes and ongoing dismantlement and construction in the context of a change process in which the Egyptian street will play a decisive role to determine the political outcome.

A large part of this outcome will also depend on Hamdin Sabahi’s and Abdul Monem Abu al-Foutouh’s ability –following the second round of the presidential elections- to develop the change project and organize their political ranks in the context of one popular front which is able to secure the right size and role that go in line with the wide popular credit revealed by the ballot boxes at the end of May.

The ministers of superpowers

When the spokeswoman for US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton comes out to say that the secretary had launched serious talks with her Russian counterpart over Syria in the post Al-Assad stage, and when she is followed by French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius who issues similar statements, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is forced to hold a press conference and announce that both ministers are lying and that the Russian political approach completely opposed such discussions since it was based on the rejection of foreign tutelage.

Lavrov, who is mad about the decadence featured in the statements of America’s and France’s foreign ministers, conveyed the extent of the trust in political clarity and morals at the level of diplomatic action, at a time when neither Clinton nor Fabius enjoy political clarity or diplomatic manners. The reason for that is the fact that Lavrov is reassured by the course of the events in Syria where the ally is strong, where the thwarting of the Western project is still ongoing and where the opponents are confused, spreading lies to conceal their impotence and giving those who wagered on them false illusions. Those relying on the West are reaping illusions based on lies, while those relying on the strength of their army and their president’s steadfastness are reaching victory on the field and sustaining reliable allies.

Arab File

Syria

On the security level, the armed terrorist groups continued their attacks in more then one Syrian region, at a time when the security apparatuses were able to cleanse the Al-Khalediya and Bab Sebaa neighborhoods in Homs from the terrorist remnants. They also stormed many dens in which the armed terrorist groups were hiding, found several explosive substances and weapons in numerous areas and thwarted a number of suicide operations.

In the meantime, the Syrian television aired a phone call between two individuals, one of them using a Turkish phone chip and another called Ghayth Mohammad Sadek Kilia, who were preparing to commit a massacre against the population in Al-Haffa and the village of Tfil in Rif Latakia. One of the callers said to the other: “Slaughter the hostages and prisoners we are holding in Tfil and put their pictures online to make it appear as though a massacre committed by the regime had taken place. Let our men manipulate the media a little.” At the same time the American Department of State mentioned it feared the perpetration of massacres in the city of Al-Haffa in Latakia.

On Wednesday, Damascus assured that the country was not witnessing civil war and was rather fighting terrorism, in response to the statements of UN under-Secretary General for Peacekeeping Operations Herve Ladsous, in which he said that Syria was now facing civil war.

On Saturday, the UN observers’ mission to Syria suspended it activities due to the mounting violence. Major General Robert Mood thus said that the escalating bloodshed was threatening the lives of the three hundred unarmed observers deployed in the Syrian cities.

Saudi Arabia

_On Saturday, the Saudi royal court announced the death of Crown Prince Nayef Bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud in Geneva where he had been receiving medical treatment. The prince died eight months after having succeeded to his older brother Sultan, which paved the way before countless speculations in regard to who will be the next in line for succession. Defense Minister Prince Salman is the most likely to become the crown prince since he enjoys seniority after the late Nayef. The latter was openly opposed to King Abdullah’s reforms in the kingdom while Salman – who has been serving as Riyadh’s governor for five decades – is believed to be closer to the current monarch’s inclinations.

Egypt

The Egyptian parliament elected the Constituent Assembly which includes one hundred figures, amid withdrawals from underneath parliament’s dome by civilian parties and independent deputies in protest against what they considered to be “the control of the Islamic wing over the assembly.” Some even threatened to resort to the judiciary to annul this election. The supreme constitutional court issued a sentence in regard to disbandment of parliament and the rejection of the political isolation law.

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces assured that the second round of the presidential elections will be held on time on Saturday and Sunday and that there was no change at this level. For their part, political forces expressed their disgruntlement towards both rulings, saying they will bring Egypt back to the climate that prevailed before the January 25 revolution, while other forces called for the respect of these judicial sentences.

Israeli File

The issues tackled by the Israeli newspapers issued this week were quite numerous. However, the most prominent one was the warning addressed by Israeli experts against the possibility of seeing the eruption of a third Palestinian uprising in case the settlement policy is sustained in the West Bank regions and in case the violence adopted by the Israeli settlers against the Palestinian citizens is upheld.

On the other hand, the papers shed light on the statements issued by Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon and in which he said “if we’ll have to choose between a strike and an Iranian bomb, we’ll choose a strike.” Alongside Ya’alon’s statement, the papers criticized and analyzed the report on the interception of the international flotilla which was heading to Gaza in 2010, but also the process launched by the immigration authority to deport the South Sudanese infiltrators. They also tackled the medal received by Peres, i.e. the presidential freedom medal, which is the highest granted by the US to figures who contributed to world peace.

For its part, Haaretz pointed to the announcement made by the MB members of the Egyptian parliamentary delegation regarding the fact that they will not participate in the meeting which was supposed to be held next week at the American capital Washington and was organized by the Israeli Foreign Ministry.

Lebanese File

The Wadi Khaled region in the Akkar valley witnessed mutual kidnapping operations against political sectarian backdrops between the citizens, as well as armed deployment and the erection of checkpoints. In light of this escalation, contacts were launched and involved official leaders and dignitaries from Akkar and Wadi Khaled, resulting in the release of the kidnapped from both sides. In the meantime, the Bab Tebanne-Jabal Mohsen axis has been witnessing stability following the recent tensions.

On June 11, dialogue was held in Baabda and resulted in the Baabda Declaration, which stressed civil peace and warned against the use of arms and the slide towards strife. According to the same declaration, this required all the political and intellectual leaders to distance themselves from any acute political or media statements and fromanything which might provoke disputes, tensions and sectarian and denominational instigation. The Baabda Declaration also provided a real cover for the Lebanese army and stressed the insistence on the Taif accord and Lebanon’s distancing from the regional and international axes policy and the negative repercussions of the regional tensions and crises. Dialogue was held in the absence of Saad al-Hariri and finance minister Mohammad al-Safadi and was boycotted by Samir Geagea.

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah assured in an interview on an Iranian television channel that the party’s current military capabilities could not be compared to its capabilities during the previous stage. He said: “The resistance missiles are now able to reach all the vital targets inside Israel,” pointing to Israel’s recognition of the party’s deterrence capabilities. He then cautioned against the attempts deployed by the US and its agents to thwart the revolutions and Islamic awakenings in the region, assuring on the other hand: “The occupation entity is weaker than ever before and its threats to strike Iran fall in the context of a psychological war and constitute an attempt to blackmail the international community.”

Source
New Orient News (Lebanon)

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Hillary Clinton : We created/funded Al-Qaeda ! …….

….. and Hillary Clinton laughs ! …….

(filed under, :”the bloody march towards a new Empire”)

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.                                                         “We came, We saw and “He” died” !

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Hillary Clinton Laughs About Gadaffis Violent Bloody Death And The Fall Of Libya ….

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The “capture” of  Col. M. Gadaffi

(strong images viewer discretion advised ……)

UPDATE : if you listen closely at 2.27, someone on the video says in clear spanish “deja que lo fusilen”!, wich means ,”let them shoot him”!

NATO Mercs ?…….

NATO mission accomplished ? ………………………

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Clinton,Merkel vs Gaddafi ……

first look at this :

and than at this :

Note something ?

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Clinton unveils U.S. policy on Internet freedom

http://www.voltairenet.org/by Hillary Clinton* 


Newseum [1]
Washington, D.C.
21 January 2011

Thank you very much, Alberto, for not only that kind introduction but your and your colleagues’ leadership of this important institution. It’s a pleasure to be here at the Newseum. The Newseum is a monument to some of our most precious freedoms, and I’m grateful for this opportunity to discuss how those freedoms apply to the challenges of the 21st century.

Although I can’t see all of you because in settings like this, the lights are in my eyes and you are in the dark, I know that there are many friends and former colleagues. I wish to acknowledge Charles Overby, the CEO of Freedom Forum here at the Newseum; Senator Edward Kaufman and Senator Joe Lieberman, my former colleagues in the Senate, both of whom worked for passage of the Voice Act, which speaks to Congress’s and the American people’s commitment to internet freedom, a commitment that crosses party lines and branches of government.

Also, I’m told here as well are Senator Sam Brownback, Senator Ted Kaufman, Representative Loretta Sanchez, many representatives of the Diplomatic Corps, ambassadors, chargés, participants in our International Visitor Leadership Program on internet freedom from China, Colombia, Iran, and Lebanon, and Moldova. And I also want to acknowledge Walter Isaacson, president of the Aspen Institute, recently named to our Broadcasting Board of Governors and, of course, instrumental in supporting the work on internet freedom that the Aspen Institute has been doing.

This is an important speech on a very important subject. But before I begin, I want to just speak briefly about Haiti, because during the last eight days, the people of Haiti and the people of the world have joined together to deal with a tragedy of staggering proportions. Our hemisphere has seen its share of hardship, but there are few precedents for the situation we’re facing in Port-au-Prince. Communication networks have played a critical role in our response. They were, of course, decimated and in many places totally destroyed. And in the hours after the quake, we worked with partners in the private sector; first, to set up the text “HAITI” campaign so that mobile phone users in the United States could donate to relief efforts via text messages. That initiative has been a showcase for the generosity of the American people, and thus far, it’s raised over $25 million for recovery efforts.

Information networks have also played a critical role on the ground. When I was with President Preval in Port-au-Prince on Saturday, one of his top priorities was to try to get communication up and going. The government couldn’t talk to each other, what was left of it, and NGOs, our civilian leadership, our military leadership were severely impacted. The technology community has set up interactive maps to help us identify needs and target resources. And on Monday, a seven-year-old girl and two women were pulled from the rubble of a collapsed supermarket by an American search-and-rescue team after they sent a text message calling for help. Now, these examples are manifestations of a much broader phenomenon.

The spread of information networks is forming a new nervous system for our planet. When something happens in Haiti or Hunan, the rest of us learn about it in real time – from real people. And we can respond in real time as well. Americans eager to help in the aftermath of a disaster and the girl trapped in the supermarket are connected in ways that were not even imagined a year ago, even a generation ago. That same principle applies to almost all of humanity today. As we sit here, any of you – or maybe more likely, any of our children – can take out the tools that many carry every day and transmit this discussion to billions across the world.

Now, in many respects, information has never been so free. There are more ways to spread more ideas to more people than at any moment in history. And even in authoritarian countries, information networks are helping people discover new facts and making governments more accountable.

During his visit to China in November, for example, President Obama held a town hall meeting with an online component to highlight the importance of the internet. In response to a question that was sent in over the internet, he defended the right of people to freely access information, and said that the more freely information flows, the stronger societies become. He spoke about how access to information helps citizens hold their own governments accountable, generates new ideas, encourages creativity and entrepreneurship. The United States belief in that ground truth is what brings me here today.

Because amid this unprecedented surge in connectivity, we must also recognize that these technologies are not an unmitigated blessing. These tools are also being exploited to undermine human progress and political rights. Just as steel can be used to build hospitals or machine guns, or nuclear power can either energize a city or destroy it, modern information networks and the technologies they support can be harnessed for good or for ill. The same networks that help organize movements for freedom also enable al-Qaida to spew hatred and incite violence against the innocent. And technologies with the potential to open up access to government and promote transparency can also be hijacked by governments to crush dissent and deny human rights.

In the last year, we’ve seen a spike in threats to the free flow of information. China, Tunisia, and Uzbekistan have stepped up their censorship of the internet. In Vietnam, access to popular social networking sites has suddenly disappeared. And last Friday in Egypt, 30 bloggers and activists were detained. One member of this group, Bassem Samir, who is thankfully no longer in prison, is with us today. So while it is clear that the spread of these technologies is transforming our world, it is still unclear how that transformation will affect the human rights and the human welfare of the world’s population.

On their own, new technologies do not take sides in the struggle for freedom and progress, but the United States does. We stand for a single internet where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas. And we recognize that the world’s information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it. Now, this challenge may be new, but our responsibility to help ensure the free exchange of ideas goes back to the birth of our republic. The words of the First Amendment to our Constitution are carved in 50 tons of Tennessee marble on the front of this building. And every generation of Americans has worked to protect the values etched in that stone.

Franklin Roosevelt built on these ideas when he delivered his Four Freedoms speech in 1941. Now, at the time, Americans faced a cavalcade of crises and a crisis of confidence. But the vision of a world in which all people enjoyed freedom of expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear transcended the troubles of his day. And years later, one of my heroes, Eleanor Roosevelt, worked to have these principles adopted as a cornerstone of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. They have provided a lodestar to every succeeding generation, guiding us, galvanizing us, and enabling us to move forward in the face of uncertainty.

So as technology hurtles forward, we must think back to that legacy. We need to synchronize our technological progress with our principles. In accepting the Nobel Prize, President Obama spoke about the need to build a world in which peace rests on the inherent rights and dignities of every individual. And in my speech on human rights at Georgetown a few days later, I talked about how we must find ways to make human rights a reality. Today, we find an urgent need to protect these freedoms on the digital frontiers of the 21st century.

There are many other networks in the world. Some aid in the movement of people or resources, and some facilitate exchanges between individuals with the same work or interests. But the internet is a network that magnifies the power and potential of all others. And that’s why we believe it’s critical that its users are assured certain basic freedoms. Freedom of expression is first among them. This freedom is no longer defined solely by whether citizens can go into the town square and criticize their government without fear of retribution. Blogs, emails, social networks, and text messages have opened up new forums for exchanging ideas, and created new targets for censorship.

As I speak to you today, government censors somewhere are working furiously to erase my words from the records of history. But history itself has already condemned these tactics. Two months ago, I was in Germany to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. The leaders gathered at that ceremony paid tribute to the courageous men and women on the far side of that barrier who made the case against oppression by circulating small pamphlets called samizdat. Now, these leaflets questioned the claims and intentions of dictatorships in the Eastern Bloc and many people paid dearly for distributing them. But their words helped pierce the concrete and concertina wire of the Iron Curtain.

The Berlin Wall symbolized a world divided and it defined an entire era. Today, remnants of that wall sit inside this museum where they belong, and the new iconic infrastructure of our age is the internet. Instead of division, it stands for connection. But even as networks spread to nations around the globe, virtual walls are cropping up in place of visible walls.

Some countries have erected electronic barriers that prevent their people from accessing portions of the world’s networks. They’ve expunged words, names, and phrases from search engine results. They have violated the privacy of citizens who engage in non-violent political speech. These actions contravene the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, which tells us that all people have the right “to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.” With the spread of these restrictive practices, a new information curtain is descending across much of the world. And beyond this partition, viral videos and blog posts are becoming the samizdat of our day.

As in the dictatorships of the past, governments are targeting independent thinkers who use these tools. In the demonstrations that followed Iran’s presidential elections, grainy cell phone footage of a young woman’s bloody murder provided a digital indictment of the government’s brutality. We’ve seen reports that when Iranians living overseas posted online criticism of their nation’s leaders, their family members in Iran were singled out for retribution. And despite an intense campaign of government intimidation, brave citizen journalists in Iran continue using technology to show the world and their fellow citizens what is happening inside their country. In speaking out on behalf of their own human rights, the Iranian people have inspired the world. And their courage is redefining how technology is used to spread truth and expose injustice.

Now, all societies recognize that free expression has its limits. We do not tolerate those who incite others to violence, such as the agents of al-Qaida who are, at this moment, using the internet to promote the mass murder of innocent people across the world. And hate speech that targets individuals on the basis of their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, or sexual orientation is reprehensible. It is an unfortunate fact that these issues are both growing challenges that the international community must confront together. And we must also grapple with the issue of anonymous speech. Those who use the internet to recruit terrorists or distribute stolen intellectual property cannot divorce their online actions from their real world identities. But these challenges must not become an excuse for governments to systematically violate the rights and privacy of those who use the internet for peaceful political purposes.

The freedom of expression may be the most obvious freedom to face challenges with the spread of new technologies, but it is not the only one. The freedom of worship usually involves the rights of individuals to commune or not commune with their Creator. And that’s one channel of communication that does not rely on technology. But the freedom of worship also speaks to the universal right to come together with those who share your values and vision for humanity. In our history, those gatherings often took place in churches, synagogues, mosques and temples. Today, they may also take place on line.

The internet can help bridge divides between people of different faiths. As the President said in Cairo, freedom of religion is central to the ability of people to live together. And as we look for ways to expand dialogue, the internet holds out such tremendous promise. We’ve already begun connecting students in the United States with young people in Muslim communities around the world to discuss global challenges. And we will continue using this tool to foster discussion between individuals from different religious communities.

Some nations, however, have co-opted the internet as a tool to target and silence people of faith. Last year, for example, in Saudi Arabia, a man spent months in prison for blogging about Christianity. And a Harvard study found that the Saudi Government blocked many web pages about Hinduism, Judaism, Christianity, and even Islam. Countries including Vietnam and China employed similar tactics to restrict access to religious information.

Now, just as these technologies must not be used to punish peaceful political speech, they must also not be used to persecute or silence religious minorities. Now, prayers will always travel on higher networks. But connection technologies like the internet and social networking sites should enhance individuals’ ability to worship as they see fit, come together with people of their own faith, and learn more about the beliefs of others. We must work to advance the freedom of worship online just as we do in other areas of life.

There are, of course, hundreds of millions of people living without the benefits of these technologies. In our world, as I’ve said many times, talent may be distributed universally, but opportunity is not. And we know from long experience that promoting social and economic development in countries where people lack access to knowledge, markets, capital, and opportunity can be frustrating and sometimes futile work. In this context, the internet can serve as a great equalizer. By providing people with access to knowledge and potential markets, networks can create opportunities where none exist.

Over the last year, I’ve seen this firsthand in Kenya, where farmers have seen their income grow by as much as 30 percent since they started using mobile banking technology; in Bangladesh, where more than 300,000 people have signed up to learn English on their mobile phones; and in Sub-Saharan Africa, where women entrepreneurs use the internet to get access to microcredit loans and connect themselves to global markets.

Now, these examples of progress can be replicated in the lives of the billion people at the bottom of the world’s economic ladder. In many cases, the internet, mobile phones, and other connection technologies can do for economic growth what the Green Revolution did for agriculture. You can now generate significant yields from very modest inputs. And one World Bank study found that in a typical developing country, a 10 percent increase in the penetration rate for mobile phones led to an almost 1 percent increase in per capita GDP. To just put this into context, for India, that would translate into almost $10 billion a year.

A connection to global information networks is like an on-ramp to modernity. In the early years of these technologies, many believed that they would divide the world between haves and have-nots. But that hasn’t happened. There are 4 billion cell phones in use today. Many of them are in the hands of market vendors, rickshaw drivers, and others who’ve historically lacked access to education and opportunity. Information networks have become a great leveler, and we should use them together to help lift people out of poverty and give them a freedom from want.

Now, we have every reason to be hopeful about what people can accomplish when they leverage communication networks and connection technologies to achieve progress. But make no mistake – some are and will continue to use global information networks for darker purposes. Violent extremists, criminal cartels, sexual predators, and authoritarian governments all seek to exploit these global networks. Just as terrorists have taken advantage of the openness of our societies to carry out their plots, violent extremists use the internet to radicalize and intimidate. As we work to advance freedoms, we must also work against those who use communication networks as tools of disruption and fear.

Governments and citizens must have confidence that the networks at the core of their national security and economic prosperity are safe and resilient. Now this is about more than petty hackers who deface websites. Our ability to bank online, use electronic commerce, and safeguard billions of dollars in intellectual property are all at stake if we cannot rely on the security of our information networks.

Disruptions in these systems demand a coordinated response by all governments, the private sector, and the international community. We need more tools to help law enforcement agencies cooperate across jurisdictions when criminal hackers and organized crime syndicates attack networks for financial gain. The same is true when social ills such as child pornography and the exploitation of trafficked women and girls online is there for the world to see and for those who exploit these people to make a profit. We applaud efforts such as the Council on Europe’s Convention on Cybercrime that facilitate international cooperation in prosecuting such offenses. And we wish to redouble our efforts.

We have taken steps as a government, and as a Department, to find diplomatic solutions to strengthen global cyber security. We have a lot of people in the State Department working on this. They’ve joined together, and we created two years ago an office to coordinate foreign policy in cyberspace. We’ve worked to address this challenge at the UN and in other multilateral forums and to put cyber security on the world’s agenda. And President Obama has just appointed a new national cyberspace policy coordinator who will help us work even more closely to ensure that everyone’s networks stay free, secure, and reliable.

States, terrorists, and those who would act as their proxies must know that the United States will protect our networks. Those who disrupt the free flow of information in our society or any other pose a threat to our economy, our government, and our civil society. Countries or individuals that engage in cyber attacks should face consequences and international condemnation. In an internet-connected world, an attack on one nation’s networks can be an attack on all. And by reinforcing that message, we can create norms of behavior among states and encourage respect for the global networked commons.

The final freedom, one that was probably inherent in what both President and Mrs. Roosevelt thought about and wrote about all those years ago, is one that flows from the four I’ve already mentioned: the freedom to connect – the idea that governments should not prevent people from connecting to the internet, to websites, or to each other. The freedom to connect is like the freedom of assembly, only in cyberspace. It allows individuals to get online, come together, and hopefully cooperate. Once you’re on the internet, you don’t need to be a tycoon or a rock star to have a huge impact on society.

The largest public response to the terrorist attacks in Mumbai was launched by a 13-year-old boy. He used social networks to organize blood drives and a massive interfaith book of condolence. In Colombia, an unemployed engineer brought together more than 12 million people in 190 cities around the world to demonstrate against the FARC terrorist movement. The protests were the largest antiterrorist demonstrations in history. And in the weeks that followed, the FARC saw more demobilizations and desertions than it had during a decade of military action. And in Mexico, a single email from a private citizen who was fed up with drug-related violence snowballed into huge demonstrations in all of the country’s 32 states. In Mexico City alone, 150,000 people took to the streets in protest. So the internet can help humanity push back against those who promote violence and crime and extremism.

In Iran and Moldova and other countries, online organizing has been a critical tool for advancing democracy and enabling citizens to protest suspicious election results. And even in established democracies like the United States, we’ve seen the power of these tools to change history. Some of you may still remember the 2008 presidential election here. (Laughter.)

The freedom to connect to these technologies can help transform societies, but it is also critically important to individuals. I was recently moved by the story of a doctor – and I won’t tell you what country he was from – who was desperately trying to diagnose his daughter’s rare medical condition. He consulted with two dozen specialists, but he still didn’t have an answer. But he finally identified the condition, and found a cure, by using an internet search engine. That’s one of the reasons why unfettered access to search engine technology is so important in individuals’ lives.

Now, the principles I’ve outlined today will guide our approach in addressing the issue of internet freedom and the use of these technologies. And I want to speak about how we apply them in practice. The United States is committed to devoting the diplomatic, economic, and technological resources necessary to advance these freedoms. We are a nation made up of immigrants from every country and every interest that spans the globe. Our foreign policy is premised on the idea that no country more than America stands to benefit when there is cooperation among peoples and states. And no country shoulders a heavier burden when conflict and misunderstanding drive nations apart. So we are well placed to seize the opportunities that come with interconnectivity. And as the birthplace for so many of these technologies, including the internet itself, we have a responsibility to see them used for good. To do that, we need to develop our capacity for what we call, at the State Department, 21st century statecraft.

Realigning our policies and our priorities will not be easy. But adjusting to new technology rarely is. When the telegraph was introduced, it was a source of great anxiety for many in the diplomatic community, where the prospect of receiving daily instructions from capitals was not entirely welcome. But just as our diplomats eventually mastered the telegraph, they are doing the same to harness the potential of these new tools as well.

And I’m proud that the State Department is already working in more than 40 countries to help individuals silenced by oppressive governments. We are making this issue a priority at the United Nations as well, and we’re including internet freedom as a component in the first resolution we introduced after returning to the United Nations Human Rights Council.

We are also supporting the development of new tools that enable citizens to exercise their rights of free expression by circumventing politically motivated censorship. We are providing funds to groups around the world to make sure that those tools get to the people who need them in local languages, and with the training they need to access the internet safely. The United States has been assisting in these efforts for some time, with a focus on implementing these programs as efficiently and effectively as possible. Both the American people and nations that censor the internet should understand that our government is committed to helping promote internet freedom.

We want to put these tools in the hands of people who will use them to advance democracy and human rights, to fight climate change and epidemics, to build global support for President Obama’s goal of a world without nuclear weapons, to encourage sustainable economic development that lifts the people at the bottom up.

That’s why today I’m announcing that over the next year, we will work with partners in industry, academia, and nongovernmental organizations to establish a standing effort that will harness the power of connection technologies and apply them to our diplomatic goals. By relying on mobile phones, mapping applications, and other new tools, we can empower citizens and leverage our traditional diplomacy. We can address deficiencies in the current market for innovation.

Let me give you one example. Let’s say I want to create a mobile phone application that would allow people to rate government ministries, including ours, on their responsiveness and efficiency and also to ferret out and report corruption. The hardware required to make this idea work is already in the hands of billions of potential users. And the software involved would be relatively inexpensive to develop and deploy.

If people took advantage of this tool, it would help us target our foreign assistance spending, improve lives, and encourage foreign investment in countries with responsible governments. However, right now, mobile application developers have no financial assistance to pursue that project on their own, and the State Department currently lacks a mechanism to make it happen. But this initiative should help resolve that problem and provide long-term dividends from modest investments in innovation. We’re going to work with experts to find the best structure for this venture, and we’ll need the talent and resources of technology companies and nonprofits in order to get the best results most quickly. So for those of you in the room who have this kind of talent, expertise, please consider yourselves invited to help us.

In the meantime, there are companies, individuals, and institutions working on ideas and applications that could already advance our diplomatic and development objectives. And the State Department will be launching an innovation competition to give this work an immediate boost. We’ll be asking Americans to send us their best ideas for applications and technologies that help break down language barriers, overcome illiteracy, connect people to the services and information they need. Microsoft, for example, has already developed a prototype for a digital doctor that could help provide medical care in isolated rural communities. We want to see more ideas like that. And we’ll work with the winners of the competition and provide grants to help build their ideas to scale.

Now, these new initiatives will supplement a great deal of important work we’ve already done over this past year. In the service of our diplomatic and diplomacy objectives, I assembled a talented and experienced team to lead our 21st century statecraft efforts. This team has traveled the world helping governments and groups leverage the benefits of connection technologies. They have stood up a Civil Society 2.0 Initiative to help grassroots organizations enter the digital age. They are putting in place a program in Mexico to help combat drug-related violence by allowing people to make untracked reports to reliable sources to avoid having retribution visited against them. They brought mobile banking to Afghanistan and are now pursuing the same effort in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. In Pakistan, they created the first-ever social mobile network, called Our Voice, that has already produced tens of millions of messages and connected young Pakistanis who want to stand up to violent extremism.

In a short span, we have taken significant strides to translate the promise of these technologies into results that make a difference. But there is still so much more to be done. And as we work together with the private sector and foreign governments to deploy the tools of 21st century statecraft, we have to remember our shared responsibility to safeguard the freedoms that I’ve talked about today. We feel strongly that principles like information freedom aren’t just good policy, not just somehow connected to our national values, but they are universal and they’re also good for business.

To use market terminology, a publicly listed company in Tunisia or Vietnam that operates in an environment of censorship will always trade at a discount relative to an identical firm in a free society. If corporate decision makers don’t have access to global sources of news and information, investors will have less confidence in their decisions over the long term. Countries that censor news and information must recognize that from an economic standpoint, there is no distinction between censoring political speech and commercial speech. If businesses in your nations are denied access to either type of information, it will inevitably impact on growth.

Increasingly, U.S. companies are making the issue of internet and information freedom a greater consideration in their business decisions. I hope that their competitors and foreign governments will pay close attention to this trend. The most recent situation involving Google has attracted a great deal of interest. And we look to the Chinese authorities to conduct a thorough review of the cyber intrusions that led Google to make its announcement. And we also look for that investigation and its results to be transparent.

The internet has already been a source of tremendous progress in China, and it is fabulous. There are so many people in China now online. But countries that restrict free access to information or violate the basic rights of internet users risk walling themselves off from the progress of the next century. Now, the United States and China have different views on this issue, and we intend to address those differences candidly and consistently in the context of our positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship.

Now, ultimately, this issue isn’t just about information freedom; it is about what kind of world we want and what kind of world we will inhabit. It’s about whether we live on a planet with one internet, one global community, and a common body of knowledge that benefits and unites us all, or a fragmented planet in which access to information and opportunity is dependent on where you live and the whims of censors.

Information freedom supports the peace and security that provides a foundation for global progress. Historically, asymmetrical access to information is one of the leading causes of interstate conflict. When we face serious disputes or dangerous incidents, it’s critical that people on both sides of the problem have access to the same set of facts and opinions.

As it stands, Americans can consider information presented by foreign governments. We do not block your attempts to communicate with the people in the United States. But citizens in societies that practice censorship lack exposure to outside views. In North Korea, for example, the government has tried to completely isolate its citizens from outside opinions. This lopsided access to information increases both the likelihood of conflict and the probability that small disagreements could escalate. So I hope that responsible governments with an interest in global stability will work with us to address such imbalances.

For companies, this issue is about more than claiming the moral high ground. It really comes down to the trust between firms and their customers. Consumers everywhere want to have confidence that the internet companies they rely on will provide comprehensive search results and act as responsible stewards of their own personal information. Firms that earn that confidence of those countries and basically provide that kind of service will prosper in the global marketplace. I really believe that those who lose that confidence of their customers will eventually lose customers. No matter where you live, people want to believe that what they put into the internet is not going to be used against them.

And censorship should not be in any way accepted by any company from anywhere. And in America, American companies need to make a principled stand. This needs to be part of our national brand. I’m confident that consumers worldwide will reward companies that follow those principles.

Now, we are reinvigorating the Global Internet Freedom Task Force as a forum for addressing threats to internet freedom around the world, and we are urging U.S. media companies to take a proactive role in challenging foreign governments’ demands for censorship and surveillance. The private sector has a shared responsibility to help safeguard free expression. And when their business dealings threaten to undermine this freedom, they need to consider what’s right, not simply what’s a quick profit.

We’re also encouraged by the work that’s being done through the Global Network Initiative, a voluntary effort by technology companies who are working with nongovernmental organizations, academic experts, and social investment funds to respond to government requests for censorship. The initiative goes beyond mere statements of principles and establishes mechanisms to promote real accountability and transparency. As part of our commitment to support responsible private sector engagement on information freedom, the State Department will be convening a high-level meeting next month co-chaired by Under Secretaries Robert Hormats and Maria Otero to bring together firms that provide network services for talks about internet freedom, because we want to have a partnership in addressing this 21st century challenge.

Now, pursuing the freedoms I’ve talked about today is, I believe, the right thing to do. But I also believe it’s the smart thing to do. By advancing this agenda, we align our principles, our economic goals, and our strategic priorities. We need to work toward a world in which access to networks and information brings people closer together and expands the definition of the global community. Given the magnitude of the challenges we’re facing, we need people around the world to pool their knowledge and creativity to help rebuild the global economy, to protect our environment, to defeat violent extremism, and build a future in which every human being can live up to and realize his or her God-given potential.

So let me close by asking you to remember the little girl who was pulled from the rubble on Monday in Port-au-Prince. She’s alive, she was reunited with her family, she will have the chance to grow up because these networks took a voice that was buried and spread it to the world. No nation, no group, no individual should stay buried in the rubble of oppression. We cannot stand by while people are separated from the human family by walls of censorship. And we cannot be silent about these issues simply because we cannot hear the cries.

So let us recommit ourselves to this cause. Let us make these technologies a force for real progress the world over. And let us go forward together to champion these freedoms for our time, for our young people who deserve every opportunity we can give them.

Thank you all very much. (Applause.)

 Hillary Clinton
Senator (D) for New York (2001-09). US Secretary of State (since 2009)

SOS Hillary Rodham Clinton’s Speech on the Middle East

 

http://www.voltairenet.org


10 December 2010

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 Hillary Clinton

Saban Center for Middle East Policy
Brookings Institution
Washington, D.C.
December 10, 2010

Thank you. Thank you very much. I appreciate the introduction, but nothing is imminent – (laughter) – so far as I know. But it is a great pleasure for me to be back here and part of this very important forum.

And I appreciate your introduction. I appreciate the friendship that you and Cheryl have given to me and to my family. You’ve been friends for many years. And certainly, as anyone who knows Haim understands, as an entrepreneur, a philanthropist, he is unparalleled, but also as a champion for peace. He represents in many ways in the best qualities of both Israel and America. He’s generous, he’s irrepressible, and absolutely unstoppable. And he has dedicated his energy and support to so many important causes and helped so many people. But he has probably no deeper passion than the one we are here discussing tonight – strengthening U.S.-Israeli relations and securing a just and lasting peace in the Middle East.

So I thank him and I thank Strobe Talbott, I thank Martin Indyk, and I thank all of you. And in particular, I appreciate your bringing us together to discuss the crucial issues surrounding the Middle East. I also want to acknowledge all of the colleagues from Israel who are here. Certainly, you’ll hear in a minute from Defense Minister Barak.

There are other members of the Israeli Government here – opposition leader Livni, and I’m delighted that Prime Minister Fayyad is also with us. Prime Minister Fayyad has accomplished a great deal in a short amount of time under very difficult circumstances. Along with President Abbas, he has brought strong leadership to the Palestinian Authority and he has helped advance the cause of a two-state solution by making a real difference in the lives of the Palestinian people. So Mr. Prime Minister, welcome again to Washington and thank you for your very good work. (Applause.)

Now, you don’t have to read secret diplomatic cables to know that we are meeting during a difficult period in the pursuit of peace in the Middle East. I understand and indeed I share the deep frustrations of many of you in this room and across the region and the world. But rather than dwell on what has come before, I want to focus tonight on the way forward, on America’s continuing engagement in helping the parties achieve a two-state solution that ends the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians once and for all, and on what it will take, finally, to realize that elusive, but essential goal.

Before I go further, I want to offer the deepest condolences of the American people for the lives lost in the recent fires in Northern Israel. Israelis are always among the first to lend a hand when an emergency strikes anywhere in the world. So when the fires began to burn, people and nations stepped up and offered help. It was remarkable to watch. Turkey sent planes; Egypt and Jordan donated chemicals and equipment; the Palestinian Authority dispatched firefighters and their trucks; and the United States was also part of the effort deploying expert firefighters, C-130 cargo planes, and thousands of gallons of chemicals and suppressants. It was testament once again to the deep and enduring bonds that unite our two countries, to the partnership between our governments, and the friendship between our people.

The United States will always be there when Israel is threatened. We say it often, but it bears repeating: America’s commitment to Israel’s security and its future is rock solid and unwavering, and that will not change. From our first days in office, the Obama Administration has reaffirmed this commitment. For me and for President Obama, this is not simply a policy position. It is also a deeply held personal conviction.

Over the last two years under President Obama’s leadership, the United States has expanded our cooperation with Israel and focused in particular on helping Israel meet the most consequential threats to its future as a secure and democratic Jewish state. Our security relationship has grown broader, deeper, and more intense than ever before. And we have not just worked to maintain Israel’s qualitative military edge. We have increased it through new advances like the Iron Dome, a short-range rocket defense system that will help protect Israeli homes and cities. And our military continues to work closely with the IDF through exchanges, training, and joint exercises.

For Israel and for the region, there may be no greater strategic threat than the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iran. We just heard my husband speaking to that. And let me restate clearly: The United States is determined to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. And along with our international partners, we have implemented tough new sanctions whose bite is being felt in Tehran. Iran’s leaders face a clear choice, one of those tough choices that Strobe mentioned as the theme of this forum: Meet your international responsibilities or face continued isolation and consequences.

We have also stepped up efforts to block the transfer of dangerous weapons and financing to terrorist groups like Hezbollah and Hamas. But Iran and its proxies are not the only threat to regional stability or to Israel’s long-term security. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians and between Israel and Arab neighbors is a source of tension and an obstacle to prosperity and opportunity for all the people of the region. It denies the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people and it poses a threat to Israel’s future security. It is at odds also with the interests of the United States.

I know that improvements in security and growing prosperity have convinced some that this conflict can be waited out or largely ignored. This view is wrong and it is dangerous. The long-term population trends that result from the occupation are endangering the Zionist vision of a Jewish and democratic state in the historic homeland of the Jewish people. Israelis should not have to choose between preserving both elements of their dream. But that day is approaching.

At the same time, the ever-evolving technology of war, especially the expanding reach of the rockets amassed on Israel’s borders means that it will be increasingly difficult to guarantee the security of Israeli families throughout the country without implementing peace agreements that answer these threats.

Continuing conflict also strengthens the hands of extremists and rejectionists across the region while sapping the support of those open to coexistence and cooperation. Radicalization of the region’s young people and growing support for violent ideologies undermine the stability and prosperity of the Middle East. The United States looks at these trends. We reflect on our deep and unwavering support of the state of Israel and we conclude without a shadow of a doubt that ending this conflict once and for all and achieving a comprehensive regional peace is imperative for safeguarding Israelis’ future.

We also look at our friends the Palestinians, and we remember the painful history of a people who have never had a state of their own, and we are renewed in our determination to help them finally realize their legitimate aspirations. The lack of peace and the occupation that began in 1967 continue to deprive the Palestinian people of dignity and self-determination. This is unacceptable, and, ultimately, it too is unsustainable.

So for both Israelis and Palestinians and, indeed, for all the people of the region, it is in their interest to end this conflict and bring a just, lasting, and comprehensive peace to the Middle East based on two states for two peoples.

For two years, you have heard me and others emphasize again and again that negotiations between the parties is the only path that will succeed in securing their respective aspirations; for the Israelis, security and recognition; for the Palestinians, an independent, viable sovereign state of their own. This remains true today. There is no alternative other than reaching mutual agreement. The stakes are too high, the pain too deep, and the issues to complex for any other approach.

Now, it is no secret that the parties have a long way to go and that they have not yet made the difficult decisions that peace requires. And like many of you, I regret that we have not gotten farther faster in our recent efforts. That is why yesterday and today I met with Israeli and Palestinian negotiators and underscored our seriousness about moving forward with refocused goals and expectations.

It is time to grapple with the core issues of the conflict on borders and security; settlements, water and refugees; and on Jerusalem itself. And starting with my meetings this week, that is exactly what we are doing. We will also deepen our strong commitment to supporting the state-building work of the Palestinian Authority and continue to urge the states of the region to develop the content of the Arab Peace Initiative and to work toward implementing its vision.

Over recent months, Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas have met face to face multiple times. I have been privileged to be present during their meetings in Sharm el-Sheikh, in Jerusalem, and in Washington. I have also had the chance to talk with each leader privately. These were meaningful talks that yielded new clarity about the gaps that must be bridged.

Significantly, both sides decided together to pursue a framework agreement that would establish the fundamental compromises on all permanent status issues and pave the way for a final peace treaty.

Reaching this goal will not be easy by any means. The differences between the two sides are real and they are persistent. But the way to get there is by engaging, in good faith, with the full complexities of the core issues and by working to narrow the gaps between the two sides.

By doing this, the parties can begin to rebuild confidence, demonstrate their seriousness, and hopefully find enough common ground on which to eventually re-launch direct negotiations and achieve that framework.

The parties have indicated that they want the United States to continue its efforts. And in the days ahead, our discussions with both sides will be substantive two-way conversations with an eye toward making real progress in the next few months on the key questions of an eventual framework agreement. The United States will not be a passive participant. We will push the parties to lay out their positions on the core issues without delay and with real specificity. We will work to narrow the gaps asking the tough questions and expecting substantive answers. And in the context of our private conversations with the parties, we will offer our own ideas and bridging proposals when appropriate.

We enter this phase with clear expectations of both parties. Their seriousness about achieving an agreement will be measured by their engagement on these core issues. And let me say a few words about some of the important aspects of these issues we will be discussing.

First, on borders and security. The land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean is finite, and both sides must know exactly which parts belong to each. They must agree to a single line drawn on a map that divides Israel from Palestine and to an outcome that implements the two-state solution with permanent Palestinian borders with Israel, Jordan, and Egypt. The Palestinian leaders must be able to show their people that the occupation will be over. Israeli leaders must be able to offer their people internationally recognized borders that protect Israel’s security. And they must be able to demonstrate to their people that the compromises needed to make peace will not leave Israel vulnerable. Security arrangements must prevent any resurgence of terrorism and deal effectively with new and emerging threats. Families on both sides must feel confident in their security and be able to live free from fear.

Second, on refugees. This is a difficult and emotional issue, but there must be a just and permanent solution that meets the needs of both sides.

Third, on settlements. The fate of existing settlements is an issue that must be dealt with by the parties along with the other final status issues. But let me be clear: The position of the United States on settlements has not changed and will not change. Like every American administration for decades, we do not accept the legitimacy of continued settlement activity. We believe their continued expansion is corrosive not only to peace efforts and two-state solution, but to Israel’s future itself.

And finally, on Jerusalem which is profoundly important for Jews, Muslims, and Christians everywhere. There will surely be no peace without an agreement on this, the most sensitive of all the issues. The religious interests of people of all faiths around the world must be respected and protected. We believe that through good faith negotiations, the parties should mutually agree on an outcome that realizes the aspirations for both parties, for Jerusalem, and safeguard its status for people around the world.

These core issues are woven together. Considering the larger strategic picture makes it easier to weigh the compromises that must be made on both sides and see the benefits to be gained. We are not moving forward in a vacuum. From day one, the Obama Administration has recognized the importance of making progress on two simultaneous and mutually reinforcing tracks – negotiations between the parties and institution-building that helps the Palestinians as they prepare to govern their own state. Improvements on the ground give confidence to negotiators and help create a climate for progress at the peace table.

So even as we engage both sides on the core issues with an eye toward eventually restarting direct negotiations, we will deepen our support of the Palestinians’ state-building efforts. Because we recognize that a Palestinian state achieved through negotiations is inevitable.

I want, once again, to commend President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad for their leadership in this effort. Under the Palestinian Authority’s Two-Year State-Building plan, security has improved dramatically, services are being delivered, and the economy is growing.

It is of course true that much work remains to reverse a long history of corruption and mismanagement. But Palestinians are rightfully proud of the progress they have achieved, and the World Bank recently concluded that if the Palestinian Authority maintains its momentum in building institutions and delivering public services, it is – and I quote – “Well positioned for the establishment of a state at any point in the near future.”

The United States is continuing our efforts to support this important work along with many other international partners, NGOs and governments, including the government of Israel to bring together key players to focus on solving specific challenges in the region, including in the Palestinian territories, we have launched an initiative called Partners for a New Beginning chaired by Madeleine Albright, Walter Isaacson, and Muhtar Kent. And we are working directly with the Palestinian Authority on a range of issues. Last month I was pleased to announce the transfer of an additional $150 million in direct assistance to the Palestinian Authority.

This fall, to site one example, American experts in partnership with the Palestinian Water Authority, began drilling new and much needed wells in Hebron. And with recent Israeli approvals, we soon will begin several water infrastructure projects in Gaza that the Palestinian Authority has identified as priorities. These and other efforts to expand wastewater treatment and provide sanitation services have already helped 12,000 Palestinian families gain access to clean water.

The United States is working with the Palestinian Authority, with Israel, and with international partners to ease the situation in Gaza and increase the flow of needed commercial goods and construction supplies while taking appropriate measures to ensure they don’t fall into the wrong hands. We are pleased with Israel’s recent decision to allow more exports from Gaza which will foster legitimate economic growth there. This is an important and overdue step, and we look forward to seeing it implemented.

Now, we also look forward to working with Israel and the Palestinian Authority on further improvements while maintaining pressure on Hamas to end the weapons smuggling and accept the fundamental principles of peacemaking – recognizing Israel, renouncing violence, and abiding by past agreements. This is the only path to achieve Palestinians’ dreams of independence.

Security is one area where the Palestinian Authority has made some of its most dramatic progress. I have seen it myself on recent trips to the West Bank, where well-trained and well-equipped Palestinian security forces stood watchful guard. Families in Nablus and Jenin shop, work, and play with a newfound sense of security, which also contributes to the improved economic conditions. As the Palestinian security forces continue to become more professional and capable, we look to Israel to facilitate their efforts. And we hope to see a significant curtailment of incursions by Israeli troops into Palestinian areas.

But for all the progress on the ground and all that the Palestinian Authority has accomplished, a stubborn truth remains: While economic and institutional progress is important, indeed necessary, it is not a substitute for a political resolution. The legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people will never be satisfied, and Israel will never enjoy secure and recognized borders until there is a two-state solution that ensures dignity, justice, and security for all.

This outcome is also in the interests of Israel’s neighbors. The Arab states have a pivotal role to play in ending the conflict. Egypt and Jordan in particular have been valuable partners for peace. In the days ahead, as we engage with the parties on the core issues and support the Palestinian people’s efforts to build their own institutions, we will also continue our diplomacy across the region and with our partners in the Quartet. Senator Mitchell will leave this weekend for Jerusalem and Ramallah and will then visit a number of Arab and European capitals.

Our message remains the same: The Arab states have an interest in a stable and secure region. They should take steps that show Israelis, Palestinians, and their own people that peace is possible and that there will be tangible benefits if it is achieved. Their support makes it easier for the Palestinians to pursue negotiations and a final agreement. And their cooperation is necessary for any future peace between Israel and Lebanon and Israel and Syria.

We continue to support the vision of the Arab Peace Initiative, a vision of a better future for all the people of the Middle East. This landmark proposal rests on the basic bargain that peace between Israel and her neighbors will bring recognition and normalization from all the Arab states. It is time to advance this vision with actions, as well as words. And Israel should seize the opportunity presented by this initiative while it is still available.

In the end, no matter how much the United States and other nations around the region and the world work to see a resolution to this conflict, only the parties themselves will be able to achieve it. The United States and the international community cannot impose a solution. Sometimes I think both parties seem to think we can. We cannot. And even if we could, we would not, because it is only a negotiated agreement between the parties that will be sustainable. The parties themselves have to want it. The people of the region must decide to move beyond a past that cannot change and embrace a future they can shape together.

As a political figure, a Senator, and now as Secretary of State, I have seen what it takes for old adversaries to make sacrifices and come together on common ground. Unfortunately, as we have learned, the parties in this conflict have often not been ready to take the necessary steps. Going forward, they must take responsibility and make the difficult decisions that peace requires.

And this begins with a sincere effort to see the world through the other side’s eyes, to try to understand their perspective and positions. Palestinians must appreciate Israel’s legitimate security concerns. And Israelis must accept the legitimate territorial aspirations of the Palestinian people. Ignoring the other side’s needs is, in the end, self-defeating.

To have a credible negotiating partner, each side must give the other the room, the political space to build a constituency for progress. Part of this is recognizing that Israeli and Palestinian leaders each have their own domestic considerations that neither side can afford to ignore. It takes two sides to agree on a deal and two sides to implement a deal. Both need credibility and standing with their own people to pull it off.

So this is also about how the leaders prepare their own people for compromise. Demonizing the other side will only make it harder to bring each public around to an eventual agreement.

By the same token, to build trust and momentum, both sides need to give the other credit when they take a hard step. As we begin to grapple with the core issues, each side will have to make difficult decisions, and they deserve credit when they do so. And it should not just be the United States that acknowledges moves that are made; the parties themselves must do so as well.

To demonstrate their commitment to peace, Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas and their respective teams should take these steps. They should help build confidence, work to minimize distractions, and focus on the core questions, even in a period when they are not talking directly.

To demonstrate their commitment to peace, Israeli and Palestinian leaders should stop trying to assign blame for the next failure, and focus instead on what they need to do to make these efforts succeed.

And to demonstrate their commitment to peace, they should avoid actions that prejudge the outcome of negotiations or undermine good faith efforts to resolve final status issues. Unilateral efforts at the United Nations are not helpful and undermine trust. Provocative announcements on East Jerusalem are counterproductive. And the United States will not shy away from saying so.

America is serious about peace. We know the road forward will not be easy. But we are convinced that peace is both necessary and possible. So we will be persistent and press forward. We will push the parties to grapple with the core issues. We will work with them on the ground to continue laying the foundations for a future Palestinian state. And we will redouble our regional diplomacy. When one way is blocked, we will seek another. We will not lose hope and neither should the people of the region.

Peace is worth the struggle. It is worth the setbacks and the heartaches. A just and lasting peace will transform the region. Israelis will finally be able to live in security, at peace with their neighbors, and confident in their future. Palestinians will at last have the dignity and justice they deserve with a state of their own and the freedom to chart their own destiny. Across the Middle East, moderates and advocates of peace and coexistence will be strengthened, while old arguments will be drained of their venom and the rejectionists and extremists will be exposed and marginalized.

We must keep our eyes trained on this future and work together to realize it. That is what this is all about. That is what makes the compromises and difficult decisions worth it, for both sides.

We are now in the holiday season, a time of reflection and fellowship. The National Christmas Tree is lighting up the sky. Jewish families have just completed the eight days of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, which reminds us that even when the future looks darkest, there is light and hope to be found through perseverance and faith. Muslims around the world also recently celebrated Eid al-Adha, the Festival of Sacrifice, which teaches the story of a man whose faith was tested when he was ordered by God to give up his beloved son. Whether we call him Abraham, Avraham, or Ibrahim, this man is the father of all the faiths of the Holy Land. He is a reminder that despite our differences, our histories are deeply entwined. And so too are our futures.

Today we should remember these stories. Sometimes we will be asked to walk difficult roads together, and sometimes these roads will be lined with naysayers, second-guessers, and rejectionists. But with faith in our common mission, we can and will come through the darkness together. That is the way – the only way toward peace, and that is what I hope we will keep in mind as we make this journey – this difficult journey toward a destination that awaits.

Thank you and may God bless you in this effort.

GORDON DUFF: WIKI-LEAKS IS ISRAEL, LIKE WE ALL DIDN’T KNOW

LAME “LEAK” SITE NOTHING MORE THAN THIN COVER FOR

“THE TEL AVIV TANGO”

By Gordon Duff STAFF WRITER/Senior Editor

Now “Wiki-Leaks” is busy selling phony bin Laden stories, having the long dead Osama humiliating the CIA by running around villages in Afghanistan selling vacuum cleaners.  What is our “leak” site really about?  This is a dead news cycle.  The World Cup is over, lots of people on holiday and no major stories.  Only in a dead news period like this, as Oliver Stone pointed out, could the Israeli controlled media dump a pile of lame rumors mixed in with box loads of chickenfeed, passing it off as the story of the century.

Even the cover story, the mysterious Assange fleeing the murderous CIA, working to save the world is lame.  WikiLeaks is lame.  Please, everyone, go to the site and read everything there.  I have seen more confidential information on a weather report.  Assange is hardly a James Bond figure.  Woody Allen is masculine in comparison.

Journalists all get leaks, and frankly, we don’t print most of them.  Some we can’t trust.  Some are just too dangerous.  Some are simply illegal.  Some are blatantly self serving Israeli propaganda coated with a veneer of anti-Americanism.  This is “Wiki-leaks” material.  What is important is what they don’t print.  The only things that come out about Israel, the country most vulnerable to leaks, the country always up to the most skulduggery, is an occasional harmless story like their major leak on East Jerusalem settlements.  It hit the New York Times first.

When you read Mr. Assange’s output, you are looking at one of the Mossad games, nothing more. They send some stories to Fox News, some to CNN, some to the Washington Post or London Times.  They have their pick as their friends and co-workers own those outlets and so many more.  The game today is using Wikileaks, given its 15 minutes of fame for trashing the US in Iraq with the helicopter video, to spread imaginary stories about Pakistan, the only nuclear power in the Middle East capable of standing up to Israel and the enemy of India.

India is what it is all really about.  Israel is playing India for a fall, drawing them into their games they way they did with the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan.  India will wake up with their government bought off, blackmailed, up to their neck in wars and insurgencies at home and fighting Israel’s enemies abroad.  India is the next real target for rape, destruction, destabilization by Israel and our “Wiki-leak” is part of that game.

Another chosen victim, of course, is the United States, hated enemy of Israel, not for public consumption, however.  Check the names of those who looted the American economy.  In the top dresser drawer of 80% of those who took the US into bankruptcy, you will find an Israeli passport.

Did anyone ask why nothing was reported in 90,000 pages regarding the massive drug dealing in Afghanistan?  With stories in the press around the world reporting that President Karzai and his brother are the biggest druglords in the world, why would this not be mentioned?  Is it because Karzai is a good friend of the Indo-Israeli alliance that runs Wiki-leaks?

Classified Army documents are filled to the brim with reports that the CIA and their private contractors are involved in drug operations with Karzai but also other names are named including many prominent Americans, some members of congress.  I won’t leak their names but I know they are in the documents.  If Wiki got what they say they got, then most of their documents would have reported corruption, drug dealing, governments of a dozen countries would have been mentioned.

If real leaks were made public and we did something about it, first by arresting the gangsters and spies filling congress, the White House and every federal agency, we might balance our budget but who would be left to do the Sunday morning talk shows?  If you want the names of those who would really be on leaked documents, check your TV listings.  It isn’t a coincidence.  Those chosen to lie on television are also being paid for other duties as well.

Israel would have been cited for laundering drug money for the Taliban.  It is in the documents.  I didn’t release them.  That is illegal.

BG Asif Haroon Raja of Pakistan, former Attache to Egypt and respected intelligence analyst had the following to say about the Wiki barrage:

“Unsubstantiated and fabricated allegations against Pakistan and its premier institutions are so absurd and decayed that it gives nausea to the reader. Only ones who enjoy the stale jokes are its manufacturers or the game players. ISI-Taliban closeness has been drummed up in such a manner as if it is the biggest sin ever committed. Each time it is presented with a new flavor to make it look more breathtaking. This unholy practice has been going on systematically and incessantly for the last six years to condition the minds of the world audience and to convert falsehood into truth. Story of this nature is routinely published in western media every fortnightly.

In the last few months write ups on this subject have suddenly gained impetus. Previously, accusations were in the form of allegations made by newspapers and think tanks. Now top US civil and military officials have jumped into the arena with loins girded up and have started using high handed tactics openly without caring for diplomatic decorum.  Propaganda assault together with verbal assaults by visiting officials and drone attacks have become a norm. They have become xenophobic and overbearing. This can be gauged from the mood of the three US visitors who visited Islamabad recently.

Prickly Hillary Clinton can see ghost of Osama sauntering in Pakistan each time she lands in Pakistan . Through her lens she sees ISI in cahoots with Taliban. She again reminded our harried rulers that any attack on US homeland with connection to Pakistan would have devastating consequences upon Pak-US relations. She conceitedly dangled few carrots to make them do more. Grim looking Holbrooke and tense ridden Adm. Mike Mullen harbored similar ideas. The trio wanted Pak Army to cut off its entire links with Taliban, consider Indians as friends and to promptly launch an operation in North Waziristan to chase out Haqqani network and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the two outfits most dreaded by USA . LeT has been put on the hit list to please India .

Wikileaks is a follow up of London Report and some of the objectives behind it are to keep Pakistan pressured and cornered, authenticate Indian allegations about ISI’s involvement in various acts of terror in Afghanistan, demonise LeT and defame ISI, exert pressure on Obama Administration to affect a change in its policy of softness towards Pakistan, reconciliation with Taliban and withdrawal of coalition forces. India together with Northern Alliance and pro-war American senior officials are possibly behind the Wikileaks scandal. This report is less harmful for Pakistan and more injurious for USA since source reports on Pakistan mostly provided by RAAM and RAW agents were never taken seriously by the receivers. Receiving officers have been noting their remarks on such reports as lacking in authenticity, biased and devoid of credibility. Moreover, such manipulated leakages would further widen rather than build trust gap between USA and Pakistan .”

When Joe Biden and General Petraeus both reported that Israel was endangering American troops, the classified portion of this involved Israeli operations in Afghanistan, which are extensive.  Why would General Petraeus have gone to congress about Israel if he didn’t have documents?  We couldn’t manage to leak those also?  They are all over Washington, anyone could pick them up.  They just don’t.  Ask Oliver Stone why.

Hundreds of pages of reports of Israeli and Indian operatives in Pakistan’s region called Baluchistan were tossed out also.  Their involvement in terrorism, not only against Iran but working directly with the Taliban in Pakistan was there but not included.  So much wasn’t included.

Nothing involving drug flights being serviced by Israeli companies was released.  It was in the files.  If we really want to leak things, they are out there.  It can get bloody.

Wikileaks leaves a trail of stench from Mr. Assange right to Tel Aviv.  If anyone couldn’t see it, the corporate press or the Israeli press or the Zionist press or whatever the current buzz word is for the useless press, they put you on the path.  They are the ones putting a spotlight on the disinformation and failing miserably to note how obviously the leaks have been edited to serve Israeli games.

Wikileaks is Israel.  Assange works for them, I hope not unwittingly.  I hate it when people are duped.  I would rather he were paid or being blackmailed.  I always want the useless to be rewarded in this life because, just in case their is another one after this, they know what they can expect there.

It won’t be pleasant.

I didn’t want to write this, add to the problem.  Even negative publicity is publicity.  Every time I am attacked, my readership goes up dramatically.  It almost encourages one to be abrasive and unnecessarily controversial, like with Fox News.

Let’s cut this short.  Wikileaks is simply another ploy by the ultra powerful Israel lobby, a cheap game meant to humiliate the United States, destroy Pakistan and build a reputation for a puppet.  I suspect it will fail.  I hope this effort is useful in that endeavor.

related :

Gordon Duff: Wikileaks, A Touch Of Assange and the Stench of AIPAC

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A Conversation with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton

by Hillary Clinton*



8 September 2010

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Council on Foreign Relations
Washington D.C.
September 08, 2010

Speaker: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State
Presider: Richard N. Haass, CFR President

RICHARD N. HAASS: Well, good morning. I’m Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations, and I want to welcome all of you here to the Washington offices of the Council on Foreign Relations. I also want to welcome the more than 500 council members, press and other constituencies who are joining us via modern technology.

As a reminder to one and all, the meeting is on the record. For those of you, let me just say at the beginning, who are not familiar with the Council on Foreign Relations, we are an independent, nonpartisan membership organization, we’re a think tank and we’re a publisher. And we are dedicated to increasing understanding of the world and the foreign policy choices facing the United States.

We all gather this morning at a critical time. The last American combat troops were just withdrawn from Iraq, at a time now 100,000 American troops are struggling to help stabilize Afghanistan. We are in the early days of the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. We continue to contend with the growing threat posed by the Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs.

We face a full set of global challenges — including, but not limited to, climate change — that really define this era, and a set of global arrangements that have not yet kept pace with these challenges. There are a number of rising countries — China, Brazil, India and others — who have yet to determine their global roles or objectives, and all of this is taking place against the backdrop of a weak U.S. economy and soaring debt that has a major — that has major adverse consequences for the future prosperity of the United States and for our capacity to lead in the world.

Fortunately, today’s speaker, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, is experienced in managing the most difficult of situations. And I refer, of course, to her performance this summer as mother of the bride. (Laughter.) Secretary Clinton is the 67th secretary of State. And as you all know, she has not limited her travels to Rhinebeck. Since she became secretary, she has visited, at last count, some 64 countries, and that amounts to one out of every three countries in the United Nations. She has racked up 350,000 miles in the process, has done all this in just over a year and a half, but still, well more than half a year longer than John C. Calhoun.

Now, speaking of John C. Calhoun — (laughter), who served as vice president before becoming secretary of State, I couldn’t help notice the speculation in some parts that Secretary Clinton might just find herself trading places with Vice President Biden, becoming the Democratic candidate for vice president in 2012. And all I can say is that there’s precedent for this. (Laughter.) There were actually — there were two fellows, named Van Buren and Jefferson, and it worked out pretty well for the two of them. (Laughter.)

Now, speaking of the past, today also marks the seventh time Mrs. Clinton has addressed the Council on Foreign Relations, the sixth time she has done so without a broken arm, and the second time she has been here as secretary of State of the United States.

So Secretary Clinton, it is a privilege and it is a pleasure to welcome you back to the Council on Foreign Relations. (Applause.)

SECRETARY OF STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON: Thank you very much, Richard. And it is a pleasure to be back here at the council with two working arms. That is something that I am very happy and grateful for. And I thank you for referencing what has been the most difficult balancing act of my time as secretary of State, pulling off my daughter’s wedding, which I kept telling people, as I traveled around the world to all of the hot spots, was much more stressful than anything else on my plate.

It is a real delight to see so many friends and colleagues and to have this opportunity here once again to discuss with you where we are as a country and where I hope we are headed.

Now, it’s clear that many of us and many in our audience are just coming off of summer vacation. Yesterday at the State Department felt a little bit like the first day of school. Everyone showed up for our morning meeting — (laughter) — and looking a lot healthier than they did when they left. And it is also obvious that there isn’t any rest for any of us. The events of the past few weeks have kept us busy. We are working to support direct talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and next week I will travel to Egypt and Jerusalem for the second round of these negotiations.

In Iraq, where our combat mission has ended, we are transferring and transitioning to an unprecedented civilian-led partnership. We are stepping up international pressure on Iran to negotiate seriously on its nuclear program. We are working with Pakistan as it recovers from devastating floods and continues to combat violent extremism. And of course the war in Afghanistan is always at the top of our minds as well as our agenda.

Now, none of these challenges exists in isolation. Consider the Middle East peace talks. At one level they are bilateral negotiations involving two peoples and a relatively small strip of land. But step back and it becomes clear how important the regional dimensions and even the global dimensions of what started last week are, and what a significant role institutions like the Quartet, consisting of the United States and Russia and the European Union and the U.N., as well as the Arab League, are playing — and equally, if not more so, how vital American participation really is.

Solving foreign-policy problems today requires us to think both regionally and globally, to see the intersections and connections linking nations and regions and interests, to bring people together as only America can. I think the world is counting on us today, as it has in the past. When old adversaries need an honest broker or fundamental freedoms need a champion, people turn to us. When the earth shakes or rivers overflow their banks, when pandemics rage or simmering tensions burst into violence, the world looks to us.

I see it on the faces of the people I meet as I travel — not just the young people who still dream about America’s promise of opportunity and equality, but also seasoned diplomats and political leaders who, whether or not they admit it, see the principled commitment and can-do spirit that comes with American engagement.

And they do look to America — not just to engage, but to lead. And nothing makes me prouder than to represent this great nation in the far corners of the world. I am the daughter of a man who grew up in the Depression and trained young sailors to fight in the Pacific. And I am the mother of a young woman who is part of a generation of Americans who are engaging the world in new and exciting ways. And in both those stories I see the promise and the progress of America. And I have the most profound faith in our people. It has never been stronger.

Now, I know that these are difficult days for many Americans. But difficulties and adversities have never defeated or deflated this country. Throughout our history, through hot wars and cold, through economic struggles and the long march to a more perfect union, Americans have always risen to the challenges we have faced. That is who we are. It is in our DNA. We do believe there are no limits on what is possible or what can be achieved.

And now, after years of war and uncertainty, people are wondering what the future holds at home and abroad. So let me say it clearly: the United States can, must and will lead in this new century. Indeed, the complexities and connections of today’s world have yielded a new American moment, a moment when our global leadership is essential, even if we must often lead in new ways, a moment when those things that make us who we are as a nation — our openness and innovation, our determination and devotion to core values — have never been more needed. This is a moment that must be seized through hard work and bold decisions, to lay the foundations for lasting American leadership for decades to come.

But now this is no argument for America to go it alone — far from it. The world looks to us because America has the reach and resolve to mobilize the shared effort needed to solve problems on a global scale, in defense of our own interests but also as a force for progress. In this we have no rival. For the United States, global leadership is both a responsibility and an unparalleled opportunity.

When I came to the Council on Foreign Relations a little over a year ago to discuss the Obama administration’s vision of American leadership in a changing world, I called for a new global architecture that could help nations come together as partners to solve shared problems. Today, I’d like to expand on this idea, but especially to explain how we are putting it into practice. Now, architecture is the art and science of designing structures that serve our common purposes, built to last and to withstand stress. And that is what we seek to build: a network of alliances and partnerships, regional organizations and global institutions that is durable and dynamic enough to help us meet today’s challenges and adapt to threats that we cannot even conceive of, just as our parents never dreamt of melting glaciers or dirty bombs.

We know this can be done because President Obama’s predecessors in the White House and mine in the State Department did it before. After the Second World War, the nation that had built the transcontinental railroad, the assembly line, the skyscraper, turned its attention to constructing the pillars of global cooperation. The third world war that so many feared never came, and many millions of people were lifted out of poverty and exercised their human rights for the first time. Those were the benefits of a global architecture forged over many years by American leaders from both political parties.

But this architecture served a different time and a different world. As President Obama has said, today it is buckling under the weight of new threats. The major powers are at peace, but new actors, good and bad, are increasingly shaping international affairs. The challenges we face are more complex than ever, and so are the responses needed to meet them. That is why we are building a global architecture that reflects and harnesses the realities of the 21st century. We know that alliances, partnerships and institutions cannot and do not solve problems by themselves. Only peoples and nations solve problems. But an architecture can make it easier to act effectively by supporting the coalition forging and compromise building that is the daily fare of diplomacy. It can make it easier to identify common interests and convert them to common action. And it can help integrate emerging powers into an international community with clear obligations and expectations.

We have no illusions that these goals can be achieved overnight, or that countries will suddenly cease to have divergent interests. We know that the test of our leadership is how we manage those differences and how we galvanize nations and peoples around their commonalities, even when they do have diverse histories, unequal resources and competing worldviews. And we know that our approach to solving problems must vary from issue to issue and partner to partner. American leadership, therefore, must be as dynamic as the challenges we face.

But there are two constants of our leadership which lie at the heart of the president’s national security strategy released in May and which runs through everything we do. First, national renewal aimed at strengthening the sources of American power, especially our economic might and moral authority — this is about more than ensuring we have the resources we need to conduct foreign policy, although that is critically important.

I remember when I was a young girl, I was stirred by President Eisenhower’s assertion that education would help us win the Cold War. I really took it to heart. I didn’t like mathematics, but I figured I had to study it for my country. (Laughter.) I also believed that we needed to invest in our people and their talents, and in our infrastructure. President Eisenhower was right: America’s greatness has always flowed in large part from the dynamism of our economy and the creativity of our people.

Today more than ever, our ability to exercise global leadership depends on building a strong foundation here at home. That’s why rising debt and crumbling infrastructure pose very real long-term national security threats. President Obama understands this. You can see it in the new economic initiatives that he announced this week and in his relentless focus on turning the economy around.

The second constant is international diplomacy, good old-fashioned diplomacy, aimed at rallying nations to solve common problems and achieve shared aspirations. As Dean Acheson put it in 1951, the ability to evoke support from others is quite as important as the capacity to compel.

To this end, we have repaired old alliances and forged new partnerships. We have strengthened institutions that provide incentives for cooperation, disincentives for sitting on the sidelines, and defenses against those who would undermine global progress. And we’ve championed the values that are at the core of the American character.

Now there should be no mistake. Of course this administration is also committed to maintaining the greatest military in the history of the world and, if needed, to vigorously defend ourselves and our friends.

After more than a year and a half, we have begun to see the dividends of this strategy. We are advancing America’s interests and making progress on some of our most pressing challenges. Today we can say with confidence that this model of American leadership, which brings every tool at our disposal to be put to work on behalf of our national interest, works, and that it offers the best hope in a dangerous world.

I’d like to outline several steps we’re taking with respect to implementing this strategy.

First, we have turned to our closest allies, the nations that share our most fundamental values and interests, and our commitment to solving common problems. From Europe and North America to East Asia and the Pacific, we are renewing and deepening the alliances that are the cornerstone of global security and prosperity.

And let me say a few words in particular about Europe. In November I was privileged to help mark the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, which closed the door on Europe’s broken past. And this summer, in Poland, we marked the 10th anniversary of the Community of Democracies, which looks ahead to a brighter tomorrow. At both events I was reminded of how far we have come together, what strength we draw from the common wellspring of our values and aspirations. The bonds between Europe and America were forged through war and watchful peace, but they are rooted in our shared commitment to freedom, democracy and human dignity.

Today we are working with our allies there on nearly every global challenge. President Obama and I have reached out to strengthen both our bilateral and multilateral ties in Europe. And the post-Lisbon EU is developing an expanded global role, and our relationship is growing and changing as a result. Now there will be some challenges as we adjust to influential new players, such as the EU Parliament, but these are debates among friends that will always be secondary to the fundamental interests and values we share. And there is no doubt that a stronger EU is good for America and good for the world.

And of course NATO remains the world’s most successful alliance. Together with our allies, including new NATO members in Central and Eastern Europe, we are crafting a new strategic concept that will help us meet not only traditional threats but also emerging ones, like cybersecurity and nuclear proliferation. Just yesterday President Obama and I discussed these issues with NATO Secretary-General Rasmussen.

After the United States was attacked on 9/11, our allies invoked Article 5 of the NATO Charter for the first time. They joined us in the fight against al Qaeda and the Taliban. And after President Obama refocused the mission in Afghanistan, they contributed thousands of new troops and significant technical assistance. We honor the sacrifices our allies continue to make and recognize that we are always strongest when we work together.

A core principle of all of our alliances is shared responsibility. Each nation must step up to do its part. And American leadership does not mean we do everything ourselves. We contribute our share — often the largest share — but we also have high expectations of the governments and peoples we work with. Helping other nations develop that capacity to solve their own problems and participate in solving other shared problems has long been a hallmark of American leadership. Our contributions are well known: to the reconstruction of Europe; to the transformation of Japan and Germany — we moved them from aggressors to allies — to the growth of South Korea into a vibrant democracy that now contributes to global progress. These are among some of American foreign policy’s proudest achievements.

In this interconnected age, America’s security and prosperity depend more than ever on the ability of others to take responsibility for defusing threats and meeting challenges in their own countries and regions. That’s why a second step in our strategy for global leadership is to help develop the capacity of developing partners; to help countries obtain the tools and support they need to solve their own problems; to help people lift themselves, their families and their societies out of poverty, away from extremism and towards sustainable progress.

We in the Obama administration view development as a strategic, economic and moral imperative. It is central to advancing American interests, as central as diplomacy and defense. Our approach is not, however, development for development’s sake. It is an integrated strategy for solving problems. Look at the work to build institutions and spur economic development in the Palestinian territories — something that Jim Wolfensohn knows firsthand. The United States invests hundreds of millions of dollars to build Palestinian capacity because we know that progress on the ground improves security and helps lay the foundation for a future Palestinian state, and it creates more favorable conditions for negotiations. The confidence that the new Palestinian security force has displayed has affected the calculus of Israeli leadership. And the United States was behind building that security force, along with other partners like Jordan. But the principal responsibility rests on the decisions made by the Palestinian Authority themselves. So with our help and their courage and commitment, we see progress that influences negotiation and holds out a greater promise for an eventual agreement.

Now, this is the right thing to do, of course. We agree with that. But make no mistake: It is rooted in our understanding that when all people are given more tools of opportunity, they are more willing to actually take risks for peace. And that’s particularly true when it comes to women. You knew I would not get through this speech without mentioning women and women’s rights. We believe strongly that investing in opportunities for women drives social and economic progress that benefits not only their families and societies, but has a rebound effect that benefits others, including us, as well.

Similarly, investments in countries like Bangladesh and Ghana bet on a future that they will join with neighbors and others in not only solving their own rather difficult challenges of poverty, but then helping to be bulwarks that send a different message to their regions.

We take into account also the countries that are growing rapidly and already exercising influence, countries like China and India, Turkey, Mexico, Brazil, Indonesia, South Africa, as well as Russia. Our third major step, therefore, has been to deepen engagement with these emerging centers of influence. We and our allies — indeed, people everywhere — have a stake in their playing constructive regional and global roles, because being a 21st-century power means having to accept a share of the burden of solving common problems, and of abiding by a set of the rules of the road, so to speak, on everything from intellectual-property rights to fundamental freedoms.

So through expanded bilateral consultation and within the context of regional and global institutions, we do expect these countries to begin to assume greater responsibility. For example, in our most recent strategic and economic dialogue in China, for the first time, development was on the agenda — something that the Chinese are doing in conjunction with their commercial interests, but which we wanted to begin to talk about so that we could better cooperate and we could perhaps share lessons learned about how best to pursue development.

In one country in Africa, we’re building a hospital, the Chinese are building a road; we thought it was a good idea that the road would actually go to the hospital. It’s that kind of discussion that we think can make a difference for the people that we are both engaged with.

India, the world’s largest democracy, has a very large convergence of fundamental values and a broad range of both national and regional interests, and we are laying the foundation for an indispensable partnership. President Obama will use his visit in November to take our relationship to the next level. With Russia, when we took office it was amid cooling to cold relations, and a return to Cold War suspicion. Now, this may have invigorated spy novelists and armchair strategists, but anyone serious about solving global problems such as nuclear proliferation knew that without Russia and the United States working together, little would be achieved. So we refocused the relationship. We offered a relationship based on not only mutual respect, but also mutual responsibility.

And in the course of the last 18 months, we have a historic new arms reduction treaty, which the Senate will take up next week; cooperation with China in the U.N. Security Council on tough new sanctions against both Iran and North Korea; a transit agreement to support our efforts in Afghanistan; a new bilateral presidential commission and civil society exchange that are forging closer people-to-people ties. And of course, as we were reminded this past summer, the spy novelists still have plenty to write about, so it’s kind of a win-win. (Laughter.)

Now, working with these emerging powers is not always smooth or easy. Disagreements are inevitable. And on certain issues, such as human rights with China or Russian occupation of Georgia, we simply do not see eye to eye, and the United States will not hesitate to speak out and stand our ground. When these nations do not accept the responsibility that accrues with expanding influence, we will do all that we can to encourage them to change course, while we will press ahead with other partners. But we know it will be difficult, if not impossible, to forge the kind of future that we expect in the 21st century without enhanced comprehensive cooperation.

So our goal is to establish productive relationships that survive the times when we do not agree, and that enable us to continue to work together. And a central element of that is to engage directly with the people of these nations. Technology and the speed of communication, along with the spread of democracy, at least in technology, has empowered people to speak up and demand a say in their own futures. Public opinions and passions matter even in authoritarian states.

So in nearly every country I visit, I don’t just meet with government officials. In Russia, I did an interview on one of the few remaining independent radio stations. In Saudi Arabia, I held a town hall at a women’s college. In Pakistan, I answered questions from every journalist, student and business leader we could find.

While we expand our relationships, therefore, with the emerging centers of influence, we are working to engage them with their own publics. You know, time and time again I hear, as I do interviews from Indonesia to the Democratic Republic of Congo to Brazil, how novel it seems to people that an official would come and take questions from the public. So we’re not only engaging the public and expanding and explaining America’s values and views, we’re also sending a message to those leaders. And as we do so, we are making it clear that we expect more from them and that we do want the kind of challenges that we face to be addressed in a regional context.

Think about the complex dynamics around violent extremism, both in Afghanistan and Pakistan and emerging out of those two countries to the rest of the world. Or the process of reintegrating Iraq into its neighborhood, which is a very tough neighborhood indeed. Regional dynamics will not remain static. And there are a lot of other players who are working day and night to influence the outcomes of those particular situations.

And we know, too, that other emerging powers, like China and Brazil, have their own notions about what the right outcome would be, or what regional institutions should look like, and they are busy pursuing them. So our friends, our allies and people around the world who share our values depend on us to remain robustly engaged.

So the fourth step in our strategy has been to reinvigorate America’s commitment to be an active trans-Atlantic, trans-Pacific and hemispheric leader. In a series of speeches and ongoing consultations with our partners, we’ve laid out core principles for regional cooperation and we’ve worked to strengthen institutions to adapt to these new circumstances.

Look at the Asia-Pacific region. When we took office, there was the perception — fair or not — that America was absent, so we made it clear from the beginning that we were back. We reaffirmed our bonds with close allies like South Korea, Japan, Australia. And we deepened our engagement with China and India. Now, the Asia-Pacific currently has few robust institutions to foster effective cooperation and reduce the friction of competition, so we began building a more coherent regional architecture, with the United States deeply involved.

On the economic front, we’ve expanded our relationship with APEC, which includes four of America’s top trading partners and receives 60 percent of our exports. We want to realize the benefits from greater economic integration. In order to do that, we have to be willing to play. To this end, we are working to ratify a free-trade agreement with South Korea, we’re pursuing a regional agreement with the nations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and we know that that will help create new jobs and opportunities here at home.

We’ve also decided to engage with the East Asia Summit, encouraging its development into a foundational security and political institution. I will be representing the United States at this year’s East Asia Summit in Hanoi, leading up to presidential participation in 2011. And in Southeast Asia, ASEAN actually encompasses more than 600 million people in its member nations. There is more U.S. business investment in the ASEAN nations than in China. So we have bolstered our relationship by signing the treaty of amity and cooperation, announcing our intention to open a mission and name an ambassador to ASEAN in Jakarta, and a commitment to holding annual U.S.-ASEAN summits; because we know the Asia-Pacific region will grow in importance, and developing these institutions will establish habits of cooperation that will be vital to stability and prosperity.

Now, effective institutions are just as crucial at the global level, so our fifth step has been to reengage with the global institutions and to work to modernize them to meet the evolving challenges we face. We obviously need institutions that are flexible, inclusive, complementary instead of just competing with each other over turf and jurisdiction. We need them to play productive roles that marshal our common efforts, and enforce the system of rights and responsibilities.

Now, the U.N. remains the single most important global institution. We are constantly reminded of its value: the Security Council enacting sanctions against Iran and North Korea; peacekeepers patrolling the streets of Monrovia and Port-au-Prince; aid workers assisting flood victims in Pakistan and displaced people in Darfur; and most recently, the U.N. General Assembly establishing a new entity, called U.N. Women, which will promote gender equality and expand opportunity for women and girls, and tackle the violence and discrimination they face.

But we are also constantly reminded of its limitations. It is difficult, as many of you in this audience know, for the U.N.’s 192 member states to achieve consensus on institutional reform, including and especially reforming the Security Council. We believe the United States has to play a role in reforming the U.N., and we favor Security Council reform that enhances the U.N.’s overall performance and effectiveness and efficiency. And we equally and strongly support operational reforms that enable U.N. field missions to deploy more rapidly, with adequate numbers of well-equipped and well-trained troops and police, and with the quality of leadership and civilian expertise they require. We will not only embrace, but we will advocate management reforms and savings that prevent waste, fraud and abuse.

Now, the U.N. was never intended to tackle every challenge; nor should it. So we are working with other organizations. To respond to the global financial crisis, we elevated the G-20. We convened the first-ever Nuclear Security Summit. New or old, the effectiveness of institutions depends on the commitment of their members, and we have seen a level of commitment to these enterprises that we will continue to nurture.

Now, our efforts on climate change — and I see our special envoy, Todd Stern here — offer an example of how we are working through multiple venues and mechanisms. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change process allows all of us — developed and developing; north, south, east and west — to work within a single venue to meet this shared challenge. But we also launched the Major Economies Forum to focus on the biggest emitters, including ourselves. And when negotiations in Copenhagen reached an impasse, President Obama and I went into a meeting with China, India, South Africa and Brazil to try to forge a compromise. And then, with our colleagues from Europe and elsewhere, we fashioned a deal that, while far from perfect, saved the summit from failure and represents progress we can build on, because for the first time all major economies made national commitments to curb carbon emissions and report with transparency on their mitigation efforts.

So we know that there’s a lot to be done on substantive issues, and there must continue to be an emphasis on democracy, human rights and the rule of law so that they are cemented into the foundations of these institutions. This is something that I take very seriously, because there’s no point in trying to build institutions for the 21st century that don’t act to counter repression and resist pressure on human rights, that extend fundamental freedoms over time to places where they have too long been denied.

And that is our sixth major step. We are upholding and defending the universal values that are enshrined in the U.N. charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, because today, everywhere, these principles are under threat. In too many places, new democracies are struggling to grow strong roots. Authoritarian regimes are cracking down on civil society and pluralism. Some leaders see democracy as an inconvenience that gets in the way of the efficient exercise of national power. So this worldview must be confronted and challenged everywhere. Democracy needs defending. The struggle to make human rights a human reality needs champions. And this work starts at home, where we have rejected the false choice between our security and our values. It continues around the world, where human rights are always on our diplomatic and development agendas, even with nations on whose cooperation we depend for a wide range of issues, such as Egypt, China and Russia. We’re committed to defending those values on the digital frontiers of the 21st century. A lot has been said about our 21st-century statecraft and our e-diplomacy, but we really believe that it’s an important additional tool for us to utilize.

And in Krakow this summer I announced the creation of a new fund to support civil society and embattled NGOs around the world, a continuing focus of U.S. policy.

Now, how do all these steps — deepening relations with allies and emerging powers, strengthening institutions and shared values — work together to advance our interests? Well, one need only look at the effort we’ve taken this past year to stop Iran’s provocative nuclear activities and its serial noncompliance with its international obligations. Now, there is still a lot of work to be done, but we are approaching the Iranian challenge as an example of American leadership in action.

First, we began by making the United States a full partner and active participant in international diplomatic efforts regarding Iran. We had been on the sidelines, and frankly, that was not a very satisfying place to be. Through our continued willingness to engage Iran directly, we have re-energized the conversation with our allies and are removing all of those excuses for lack of progress.

Second, we have sought to frame the issue within the global non-proliferation regime, in which the rules of the road are clearly defined for all parties. To lead by example, we have renewed our own disarmament efforts. Our deepened support for global institutions such as the IAEA underscores the authority of the international system. And Iran, on the other hand, continues to single itself out through its own actions, drawing even criticism for its refusal to permit IAEA inspectors to visit from Russia and China in the last days. Its intransigence represents a challenge to the rules that all countries must adhere to.

And third, we have strengthened our relationship with those countries whose help we need if diplomacy is to be successful. Through classic shoe-leather diplomacy, we’ve built a broad consensus that will welcome Iran back into the community of nations if it meets its obligations and will likewise hold Iran accountable if it continues its defiance.

This spring, the U.N. Security Council passed the strongest and most comprehensive set of sanctions. The European Union then followed fwith robust implementation of that resolution. Many other nations are implementing their own additional measures, including Australia, Canada, Norway and most recently Japan. So we believe Iran is beginning to feel the impact of these sanctions. But beyond what governments are doing, the international financial and commercial sectors are also starting to recognize the risks of doing business with Iran.

Sanctions and pressures, however, are not ends in themselves. They are the building blocks of leverage for a negotiated solution to which we and our partners remain committed. (The ?) choice for Iran’s leaders is clear, and they have to decide whether they accept their obligations, or increasing isolation and the costs that come with it. And we will see how Iran decides.

Now, our task going forward is to continue to develop this approach, to develop the tools that we need. And we have to strengthen civilian power. Now, when I was here last year, we were just at the beginning of making the case to Congress that we had to have more diplomats and more development experts, we had to have greater Foreign Service and civil service personnel. Congress has already then appropriated funds for more than 1,100 new foreign and civil service officers. USAID has begun a series of reforms aimed at reestablishing it as the world’s premier development agency. Across the board, we need to rethink, reform and recalibrate.

And in time(s) of tight budgets, we not only have to assure our resources are spent wisely; we have to make the case to the American taxpayer and the members of Congress that this is an important investment. That’s why I launched the first-ever Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review — we call it the QDDR — a host — wholesale review of State and USAID, to recommend how we can better equip, fund and organize ourselves. I’ll be talking more about that in the coming weeks as this review is completed and published.

But we recognize the scope of the efforts we’ve undertaken. I had a lot of wonderful advice from my predecessors. And one of the most common pieces of advice was, you can either try to manage the building or manage the world; you can’t try to do both. (Chuckles.) We have tried to do both, which is, you know, an impossible task to start with.

But we’re not trying to do it alone. We are forging a closer partnership with the Defense Department. Bob Gates has been one of the strongest advocates of the position that we are taking, that I’m expressing today. He constantly is encouraging the Congress to give us the funds that we asked for.

But there’s a legitimate question, and some of you have raised it, I know, in print and elsewhere: How can you try to manage or at least address and even try to solve all of these problems? But our response, in this day where there is nothing that doesn’t come to the forefront of public awareness: What do we give up on? What do we put on the back burner? Do we sideline development? Do we put some hot conflicts on hold? Do we quit trying to prevent other conflicts from unfreezing and heating up? Do we give up on democracy and human rights? I don’t think that’s what is either possible or desirable, and it is not what Americans do, but it does require a lot of strategic patience.

You know, when our troops come home, as they are from Iraq and eventually from Afghanistan, we’ll still be involved in diplomatic and development efforts, trying to rid the world of nuclear dangers and turn back climate change, end poverty, you know, quell the epidemic of HIV/AIDS, tackle hunger and disease. That’s the work not of a year or even of a presidency, but of a lifetime. And it is the work of generations. America has made generational commitments to building the kind of world that we wanted to inhabit for many decades now. We cannot turn away from that responsibility. We are a nation that has always believed we have the power to shape our own destiny and to cut a new and better path, and frankly to bring along people who were like-minded from around the world. So we will continue to do everything we can to exercise the best traditions of American leadership at home and abroad, to build that more peaceful and prosperous future for our children and for children everywhere. Thank you. (Applause.)

HAASS: Well, thank you. And I will ask a slightly longer first question than I normally would while you fumble with that.

CLINTON: Thank you very much. (Laughter.) That’s very kind of you.

HAASS: The old stall tactic, filibustering. You may recall that from a previous life — (inaudible).

CLINTON: I do, but I never knew it would be so common. (Laughter.)

HAASS: Yeah — (inaudible) — (laughter) — Council on Foreign Relations. We’re trying to keep up. We’re trying to keep up. (Laughter.) Touche. Let me start where — you okay?

CLINTON: Yeah.

HAASS: Let me start where you began — where you ended, rather, which was with all these things we want to do, and you called for strategic patience in Afghanistan and so forth. Yet the United States is soon approaching a point where the scale or size of our debt will exceed our GDP — (off mike) — question of when more than if.

Where does national security contribute to the solution to running deficits of $1-1/2 trillion a year, or do we continue to carry out a foreign and defense policy as if we were not seriously resource-constrained?

CLINTON: Well, Richard, first, you know, as I said, I think that our rising debt levels — (off mike) — poses a national security threat, and it poses a national security threat in two ways. It undermines our capacity to act in our own interest, and it does constrain us where constraint may be undesirable. And it also sends a message of weakness internationally. I mean, it is very troubling to me that we are losing the ability not only to chart our own destiny but to, you know, have the leverage that comes from this enormously effective economic engine that has powered American values and interests over so many years.

So I don’t think we have a choice. It’s a question of how we — how we decide to deal with this debt and deficit. I mean, you know, it is — we don’t need to go back and sort of re-litigate how we got to where we are, but it is fair to say that, you know, we fought two wars without paying for them, and we had tax cuts that were not paid for either. And that has been a very deadly combination to fiscal sanity and responsibility.

So the challenge is how we get out of it by making the right decisions, not the wrong decisions. I mean, there’s a lot of wrong things we could do that would further undermine our strength. I mean, it is going to be very difficult for those decisions.

And I know there’s an election going on, and I know that I am by law out of politics, but I will say that this is not just a decision for the Congress, it’s a decision for the country. And it’s not a Republican or a Democratic decision. And there are a lot of people who know more about what needs to be done and who frankly have a responsible view, whose voices are not being heard right now. And I think that is a great disservice to our nation. Whether one is a Republican or a Democrat, a conservative, a progressive, whatever you call yourself, there is no free lunch, and we cannot pretend that there is without doing grave harm to our country and our future generations.

So when you — you specifically say: Well, what about, you know, diplomacy, development and defense? You know, we will have to take our share of the burden of meeting the fiscal targets that can drag us out of this deep hole we’re in, but we’ve got to be smart about it.

And I think from both my perspective and Bob Gates’s perspective — and we’ve talked about this a lot — you know, Bob has made some very important recommendations that are not politically popular but which come with a very well thought-out policy. And what I’ve tried to do is to say: Well, we’re going to try to be smarter, more effective. In our QDDR we’re recommending changes in personnel policies, in all kinds of approaches that will better utilize what we have. But we needed to get a little more robust in order to catch up to our responsibilities.

A quick final point on that. You know, when our combat troops move out of Iraq, as they’ve been, that will save about $15 billion. That’s a net win for our Treasury, and it’s the policy that we have committed to along with the Iraqis. (Off mike) — the Congress cuts my budget of the State Department and USAID for trying to pick up the pieces that we’re left with. You know, we now have the responsibility for the police training mission, for opening up (consulates ?) that have to be secure. So even though our troops are coming down and we’re saving money, and what we’re asking for is considerably less than the 15 billion (dollars) that we are saving by having the troops leave, the Congress cuts us.

And so, you know, we have to get a more sensible, comprehensive approach, and you know, Bob and I have talked about, you know, trying to figure out how to present a national security budget.

It’s a mistake to look at all of these items — foreign aid, diplomatic, operations, defense — as stovepipes, because what we know, especially from the threats that we have faced in Iraq and now in Afghanistan, is you have to be more integrated. So let’s start thinking from a budget perspective about how to be more integrated.

So there’s a lot that we can do on our side to help, but the bottom line is that the public and the Congress and the administration have to make some very tough decisions, and I hope we make the right decisions.

HAASS: Let me just follow up on that, because you broached the political issue. And let me do it in the following way. I don’t have a crystal ball any better than anyone else’s, but let’s assume some of the pundits are essentially right and Republicans pick up quite a few seats in the House — whether they have control or not, who knows — they pick up a few seats in the Senate, so government is more divided come the new Congress when it takes office early next year.

What does that mean for you? What are the opportunities, what are the problems in that for being secretary of State?

CLINTON: Well, I won’t answer that as a political question because I don’t want to cross my line here. But I will say that, you know, I have found a lot of support for what we’re trying to do on both sides of the aisle in both houses. And I think we will continue to have that. And I’m hoping that we can maybe reestablish something of a detente, when it comes to foreign policy, that cuts across any partisan divide.

Like take the START treaty. You know, we have unanimous support for that. Our two chief negotiators — Rose Gottemoeller, our assistant secretary; and Ellen Tauscher, our undersecretary — are here, and they did a terrific job. And we’ve had a very positive endorsement of it by former secretaries of State and Defense of both parties, the Joint Chiefs have come out, everybody’s come out for it.

And, you know, it’s a political issue. You know, I wish it weren’t, because most of these treaties pass, you know, 95 to nothing, you know, 90 to 3. They have huge, overwhelming majorities in the Senate. But we know that we have, you know, political issues that we have to address, which we are, and talking to those who have some questions.

But I hope at the end of the day the Senate will say, you know, some things should just be beyond any kind of election or partisan calculation, and that everybody will pull together and we’ll get that START treaty done, which I know from my own conversations with Eastern and Central Europeans and others is seen as a really important symbol of our commitment to continue working with the Russians.

HAASS: Just one last question, then I’ll open it up to our members. You’re about, as you said, to head back to the Middle East for the resumption of the Israeli-Palestinian talks. The op-ed pages have been filled — I would say a majority of the pieces have been quite pessimistic. Why are the pessimists wrong? (Very short audio break.) (Laughter.)

CLINTON: Well, I think they’re wrong, because I think that both sides and both leaders recognize that there may not ever be another chance. I think for most Israeli leaders that I have known and worked with, and especially those coming from sort of the right of Israeli politics, which the prime minister does — you know, it’s like Mario Cuomo’s famous line: you know, they campaign in poetry and they govern in prose. And the prose is really challenging.

You know, you look at where Israel is and the threats it faces demographically, technologically, ideologically, and the idea of striking a peace deal with a secular Palestinian Authority that is committed to its own people’s economic future makes a lot of sense if it can be worked out.

From Abbas, he was probably the earliest and at times the only Palestinian leader who called for a two-state solution, going back probably 20, 30 years. And for him, this is the culmination of a life commitment.

And I think that the Arab League initiative, the peace initiative, put the Arab — most Arab and Muslim countries on record as saying that they could live with and welcome a two-state solution — 57 countries, including some we know didn’t mean it, but most have followed through in commitments to it — has changed the atmosphere.

So I know how difficult it is and I know the internal domestic political considerations that each leader has to contend with, but I think there’s a certain momentum. You know, we have some challenges in the early going that we have to get over, but I think that we have a real shot here.

HAASS: Okay. I’ll open it up, and what I’ll ask is people to identify themselves, wait for a microphone, and please limit yourself to one question and be as short as you can.

Sir, I don’t know your name, but — yes, sir. Right there.

QUESTIONER: How are you, Secretary Clinton? My name’s Travis Adkins. I’m an international affairs fellow with the Council on Foreign Relations —

HAASS: I should know about that. (Laughs.)

QUESTIONER: — focusing on — focusing on Sudan this year. And my question is if — you mentioned Darfur once in your talk. If you could elaborate a little bit on our ramped-up efforts in Sudan as we head towards the referendum there in January.

CLINTON: Well, thank you. Thanks for asking, and thanks for your — your work on Sudan.

We have — we have a very difficult set of challenges in Sudan. Some of you in this audience, both those of you who were in government before, like John Negroponte and others, you know, you know this firsthand. The situation in Darfur is dangerous, difficult, not stable. But the situation North-South is a ticking time bomb of enormous consequence.

So we are ramping up our efforts to bring the parties together — North and South, the African Union, others — to focus on this referendum, which has not been given the attention it needs, both because the South is not quite capable of summoning the resources to do it, and the North has been preoccupied and is not inclined to do it because it’s pretty clear what the outcome will be. The African Union committee under Thabo Mbeki has been working on it.

So we are upping our diplomatic and development efforts. We have increased our presence in Juba. We have sent a — we’ve opened a kind of consulate and sent a consul general there. We are — Princeton Lyman, who some of you know, is sort of signed on to help as well, with Scott Gration and his team — HAASS: Until last week, a senior fellow here.

CLINTON: That’s right. And Assistant Secretary Johnnie Carson.

It’s really all hands on deck, so that we’re trying to convince the North and South and all the other interested parties who care about the comprehensive peace agreement to weighing in to getting this done. The time frame is very short. Pulling together this referendum is going to be difficult. We’re going to need a lot of help from NGOs, the Carter Center and others who are willing to help implement the referendum.

But the real problem is, what happens when the inevitable happens and the referendum is passed and the South declares independence? So simultaneously, we’re trying to begin negotiations to work out some of those intractable problems. What happens to the oil revenues? I mean, if you’re in the North, and all of a sudden you think a line’s going to be drawn and you’re going to lose 80 percent of the oil revenues, you’re not a very enthusiastic participant. (Laughs.) What are the deals that can possibly be made that will limit the potential of violence?

And even if we did everything perfectly and everyone else — you know, the Norwegians, the Brits, everybody who’s weighing in on this — did all that they could, the reality is that this is going to be a very hard decision for the North to accept. And so we’ve got to figure out some ways to make it worth their while to peacefully accept an independent South, and for the South to recognize that unless they want more years of warfare and no chance to build their own new state, they’ve got to make some accommodations with the North as well.

So that’s what we’re looking for. If you have any ideas from your study, let us know. (Laughter.)

HAASS: I’d like to turn to Carla Hills.

QUESTIONER: Secretary Clinton, first of all, thank you for a really far-ranging, extraordinarily interesting talk.

You mentioned strategies that are regional, and I’d like you to just say a word more about this hemisphere. You gave a wonderful speech at the border of Mexico, where you asserted that we had responsibility for the drugs coming north and the guns going south. Talk a little bit about how we are implementing strategies to turn that around, and also to gain friendships that would be helpful throughout Latin America.

CLINTON: Well, first, Carla, thank you for asking about this hemisphere, because it is very much on our minds. And we face an increasing threat from a well-organized network, drug-trafficking threat that is, in some cases, morphing into or making common cause with what we would consider an insurgency, in Mexico and in Central America.

And we are working very hard to assist the Mexicans in improving their law enforcement and their intelligence, their capacity to detain and prosecute those who they arrest. I give President Calderon very high marks for his courage and his commitment. This is a really tough challenge. And these drug cartels are now showing more and more indices of insurgency — you know, all of a sudden car bombs show up, which weren’t there before.

So it’s becoming — it’s looking more and more like Colombia looked 20 years ago, where the narcotraffickers control, you know, certain parts of the country — not — significant parts; in Colombia, it got to the point where, you know, more than a third of the country — nearly 40 percent of the country at one time or another was controlled by the insurgents, by FARC.

But it’s going to take a combination of improved institutional capacity and better law enforcement and, where appropriate, military support for that law enforcement, you know, married to political will, to be able to prevent this from spreading and to try to beat it back.

Mexico has capacity, and they’re using that capacity, and they’ve been very willing to take advice. You know, they’re wanting to do as much of it on their own as possible, but we stand ready to help them. But the small countries in Central America do not have that capacity, and the newly inaugurated president of Costa Rica, President Chinchilla, you know, said, we need help and we need a much more vigorous U.S. presence.

So we are working to try to enhance what we have in Central America. We hear the same thing from our Caribbean friends, so we have an initiative, the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative. And our relationship is not all about drugs and violence and crime, but unfortunately that often gets the headlines. We’re also working on more economic programs, we’re working on Millennium Challenge grants, we’re working on a lot of other ways of bolstering economies and governments to improve rule of law. But this is on the top of everyone’s mind when they come to speak with us.

And I know that Plan Colombia was controversial. I was just in Colombia, and there were problems and there were mistakes, but it worked. And it was bipartisan, started, you know, in the Clinton administration, continued in the Bush administration. And I think President Santos will try to do everything he can to remedy the problems of the past while continuing to, you know, make progress against the insurgency.

And we need to figure out what are the equivalents for Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean. And that’s not easy, because these — you know, you put your finger on it. I mean, those drugs come up through Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, through Central America, southern Mexico, to the border, and we consume them. And those guns — you know, those guns, legal and illegal, keep flooding, along with all of the mayhem — it’s not only guns; it’s weapons, it’s arsenals of all kinds that come south. So I feel a real sense of responsibility to do everything we can. And again, we’re working hard to come up with approaches that will actually deliver.

HAASS: Speaking of guns, I’m going to be shot if I don’t ask a question that comes from one of our national members. And thanks to the iPad I have on my lap, I can ask it. Several have written in about the impact of the mosque debate in New York, about the threat to burn Korans. How — what’s your view on all this from the Department of State? How does this complicate your life? (Laughter.)

CLINTON: Well, you know, I mean, we — you know, we’re a country of what, 310 million plus right now? And, I mean, it’s regrettable that a pastor in Gainesville, Florida with a church of no more than 50 people can make this outrageous and distressful, disgraceful plan and get, you know, the world’s attention. But that’s the world we live in right now. I mean, it doesn’t in any way represent America or Americans or American government or American religious or political leadership.

And we are, as you’ve seen in the last few days, you know, speaking out. General Petraeus made the very powerful point that as seemingly, you know, small a group of people doing this, the fact is that it will have potentially great harm for our troops.

So we are hoping that the pastor decides not to do this. We’re hoping against hope that if he does, it won’t be covered. (Laughs, laughter.)

HAASS: Bonne chance!

CLINTON: As a — as a — you know, an act of patriotism.

But I think that it — you know, it’s unfortunate. I mean, it’s not who we are, and we just have to constantly be demonstrating by our words and actions. And as I remind, you know, my friends around the world, in the environment in which we all now operate, anybody with an iPhone, anybody with a blog, can, you know, put something out there which is outrageous. I mean, we went through the cartoon controversy; we went through the Facebook controversy in Pakistan. Judith McHale, who’s our undersecretary for Public Diplomacy, is on the front lines of — you know, is pushing back on all of this all the time. And so we want to be judged by who we are as a nation, not by something that is so aberrational. And we’ll make that case as strongly as possible.

HAASS: Do you have time for one more?

CLINTON: Sure.

HAASS: Okay. Let me first of all apologize for the 283 of you who are — whose questions will not — (laughter) — get answered. And let me also say that after the secretary completes her next answer, if people would just remain seated, while we get you out quickly and safely. Barbara —

CLINTON: Safely? You think they’re going to storm the stage? (Laughs, laughter.)

HAASS: This is the —

CLINTON: I don’t know, I’m looking at this audience! There’s a — (laughter) — there’s a few people I think that might. (Laughter.)

HAASS: (Laughs.)

QUESTIONER: (Laughs.) Thanks, Richard.

Barbara Slavin, independent journalist. Madame Secretary, it’s a pleasure. And I appreciate the responsibility on my shoulders. I have two very quick ones — very easy ones. (Laughter.)

Is it the role of the United States to support the Green Movement, the opposition in Iran? And if so, how should we be doing that?

And secondly, you’ve hardly mentioned North Korea. Is U.S. policy now just to let North Korea stew in its own juices until the next Kim takes over? Thank you.

CLINTON: Well, with respect to the first question, it is — it is definitely our policy to support freedom and human rights inside Iran. And we have done so by speaking out. We have done so by trying to equip Iranians with the tools, particularly the technology tools that they need to be able to communicate with each other, to make their views known. We have strongly condemned the actions of the Iranian government, and continue to do so.

I don’t think there’s any doubt that Iran is morphing into a military dictatorship with a, you know, sort of religious ideological veneer. It is becoming the province of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and in concert with some of the clerical and political leadership. And I don’t think that’s what the Iranian revolution for a republic of Iran, an Islamic republic of Iran, was ever meant to become.

So I know there’s a great deal of ferment and activities inside Iran that we do try to support. At the same time, we don’t want to either endanger or undermine those very same people, so that it becomes, you know, once again, the U.S. doing something, instead of the U.S. being supportive of what indigenous efforts are taking place.

We know that Iran is under tremendous pressure. Early returns from implementation of the sanctions are that they’re feeling the economic effects. We would hope that that would lead them to reconsider their positions, not only with respect to nuclear weapons but, frankly, the export of terrorism. And it’s not only in the obvious places, with Hezbollah and Hamas, but, you know, in trying to destabilize many countries in the region, and beyond, where they have, you know, provided support and funding for terrorist activities as far away as Argentina.

So I think that there is a very sad confluence of events occurring inside Iran that I think eventually — but I can’t put a time frame on it — the Iranian people themselves will respond to. And we want to be helpful, but we don’t want to get in the way of it. So that’s the balance that we try to strike. With respect to North Korea, we are continuing to send a very clear message to North Korea about what we expect and what the six-party process could offer if they are willing to return and discuss seriously denuclearization that is irreversible. We are in intense discussions about this with all the other six-party members, and we’re watching the leadership process and don’t have any idea yet how it’s going to turn out. But the most important issue for us is trying to get our six-party friends, led by China, to work with us to try to convince who’s ever in leadership in North Korea that their future would be far better served by denuclearizing. And that remains our goal.

HAASS: As always —

CLINTON: (Chuckles.)

HAASS: — thank you so much for coming here, first of all, but also giving such a thorough and complete and serious and comprehensive talk about American foreign policy. And I know I speak for everyone — that we wish you Godspeed and more in your work next week and beyond. Thank you so much. (Applause.)

CLINTON: Thanks, Richard.

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