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Resources for Transformational Diplomacy

Secretary Condoleezza Rice
Testimony Before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Operations
Washington, DC
May 10, 2007

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(10:25 a.m. EDT)

SECRETARY RICE: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you Ranking Member Gregg, members of the subcommittee. Mr. Chairman I will place the full statement into the record so that we might have full time for exchange and I will just start with a few comments.

I appreciate, again, the opportunity to address this committee about the challenges and the opportunities that we face in the United States and that the United States faces in the world today. I look forward to working with you, with members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, so that we can ensure that America's diplomacy and the courageous individuals who undertake it have the necessary resources to protect our national security, to advance our democratic ideals and to improve people's lives throughout the world. With these duties we also reaffirm our responsibility to the American people and that is a responsibility to be the best possible stewards of their hard-earned dollars.

President Bush's fiscal year 2008 International Affairs Budget request for the Department of State USAID and other foreign affairs agencies totals $36.2 billion. In addition, the Administration is requesting $3.3 billion in war supplemental funding in fiscal year 2008, 1.37 billion of that would be for foreign assistance and 1.93 for State Department operations. It's principally to support emergency requirements in Iraq and Afghanistan. This request represents the fundamental investment in our national --

CHAIRMAN LEAHY: If you could withhold a moment.

SECRETARY RICE: Yes.

CHAIRMAN LEAHY: The people in this room are here as guests of the Senate. Obviously, you have a right to express opinions. But when you stand up, in a way you block others who have stood in line. A lot of people have stood in lines for hours for these hearings. We want -- they are televised, but we want people to be able to see the hearings. But when you stand up, you're blocking people behind you and I think that's unnecessary. You can make your point. I realize there are people here who disagree with the war in Iraq, disagree perhaps with what's being said. But I would make it very clear, I will not countenance in any way people being blocked from being able to watch this nor will I countenance in any way disturbances, just so we all understand.

Secretary Rice, please continue.

SECRETARY RICE: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. America remains engaged in a global war on terrorism which is a war of a totally new and different kind. We face a long confrontation in which military strength is important but not sufficient. The defining feature of our world today is its interdependence. The security of the American people depends on the stability and the success of foreign societies. If governments cannot or choose not to meet their responsibilities as sovereign states, nations around the globe are threatened by the resulting chaos and disorder.

The President believes that the defense of our country depends on close integration of our multilateral diplomacy, our development efforts, and our support for human rights and democratic institutions. That is why President Bush's budget designates the Department of State as a national security agency. We must recognize that our Foreign Service, our Civil Service, and Foreign Service nationals are performing a vital national security role, often in difficult and dangerous posts far away from friends and families and in many cases, shoulder-to-shoulder on the front lines with our men and women in uniform. We are asking our civilians to do far more than just manage an existing international order. We are charging them with helping foreign citizens and their governments to transform their countries, to move them toward peace and freedom, prosperity and social justice. This is the national security mission of our Department of State which we refer to as transformational diplomacy.

To succeed in this critical work for the American people, we are making important changes to our Department's organizations both in terms of roles--the roles our people are playing and how we are structuring our foreign assistance programs. We believe strongly that this is a challenging time for America, for our goals of promoting democracy and for the resultant peace that it would bring. But I can tell you that I am very, very proud to lead the men and women of the Department of State. They are great patriots. They're doing hard jobs and I look forward to being before you to talk about the resources that they need to do their job well.

Thank you very much.

2007/389



Released on May 10, 2007

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