Clinton: New reality demands different ‘global architecture’
Hillary Clinton, Council on Foreign Relations, July 15, 2009 | KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images In her superb foreign-policy speech today at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), Secretary Clinton (with her right arm free from a sling) presented an “ambitious agenda” that included the call for a different “global architecture” and announced that the United States was ...
In her superb foreign-policy speech today at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), Secretary Clinton (with her right arm free from a sling) presented an “ambitious agenda” that included the call for a different “global architecture” and announced that the United States was ready for engagement with Iran, though only for a limited window of time.
Hopefully now, all the talk of Clinton in the shadows has been put to rest.
Paraphrasing from my notes:
On global governance: No nation can solve the world’s problems on its own. Most countries worry about the same threats. These two facts demand a different global architecture — an architecture of cooperation. Not only are multilateral institutions important, but so are partnerships with people, including outreach through educational and entrepreneurial programs and connecting through technology.
On the new approach: The “you’re with us or against us” approach is “global malpractice.”
On Iran’s election: Clinton said she was “appalled” by the way in which the Iranian government responded to protesters after June 12’s disputed election.
On engaging Iran: Clinton said direct talks were the best way to get through to Iran on nuclear arms. However, she said the opportunity for talks would not remain open indefinitely. (Clinton did not say when that window of opportunity would close, though.)
On foreign aid: In keeping with the idea of “smart power,” foreign assistance should be provided in an efficient manner to implement country-driven solutions. Development must focus on women as drivers of economic growth and a key to stability.
On the Taliban: Clinton talked about accepting members of the Taliban who reject al Qaeda and lay down their arms. (Perhaps this came from the lessons learned from de-Baathification in Iraq?)
Perhaps alluding to a “reset” in how the United States does foreign policy, Clinton quoted Thomas Paine: “We have it in our power to start the world again.”
As a side note, when introducing her, CFR President Richard Haass noted that six other secretaries of state have gone on to become U.S. presidents. Clinton smiled and shook her head at him while the audience laughed.
Two points I’d like to know more about:
•When does the opportunity for dialogue with Iran, which Clinton warned was not “indefinite,” close exactly?
•What prompted her to talk of accepting Taliban members who reject al Qaeda and lay down their arms? In the question-and-answer session, she even said it could apply to other organizations.
Photo: KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images
Preeti Aroon was copy chief at Foreign Policy from 2009-2016 and was an assistant editor from 2007-2009. Twitter: @pjaroonFP
More from Foreign Policy
America Is a Heartbeat Away From a War It Could Lose
Global war is neither a theoretical contingency nor the fever dream of hawks and militarists.
The West’s Incoherent Critique of Israel’s Gaza Strategy
The reality of fighting Hamas in Gaza makes this war terrible one way or another.
Biden Owns the Israel-Palestine Conflict Now
In tying Washington to Israel’s war in Gaza, the U.S. president now shares responsibility for the broader conflict’s fate.
Taiwan’s Room to Maneuver Shrinks as Biden and Xi Meet
As the latest crisis in the straits wraps up, Taipei is on the back foot.