Hillary Clinton loves roaming around `Foggy Bottom headquartersFebruary 13th, 2009 - 1:33 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Feb.13 (ANI): Three weeks into her new role as US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton seems to be enjoying her new status at the Foggy Bottom headquarters.
According to CBS, there are reports of her cruising the hallways and dropping in on people to talk about what theyre doing, but it has been mostly a mix of briefings, meetings and policy reviews taking place out of the public eye.
Of course there have been a smattering of photo-ops with visiting foreign ministers and other dignitaries, sometimes with a chance for reporters to ask Clinton about the news of the day or the administrations policy on one subject or another.
Clinton held big, public ceremonies to announce the appointments of special envoy George Mitchell for the Middle East peace process and Todd Stern for Climate Change negotiations as well as Richard Holbrooke as special representative for Afghanistan-Pakistan.
In her first few days on the job, Secretary Clinton has made over two dozen phone calls to foreign leaders, many of whom she knew already. After that, she has begun to receive a steady stream of visitors from abroad, including the foreign ministers of the United Kingdom, Germany, France and the Czech Republic.
The Presidents of Haiti and the Philippines stopped by as did the Prime Minister of Albania, all standard fare for the next four years.
There have also been breakfast or lunch meetings with senior members of Congress not to mention weekly get-togethers with her boss, President Barack Obama, and Vice President Joe Biden. It is all part of what Clinton stresses really is a team effort in national security policy.
Not wanting to neglect the people shell be relying on most, Clinton also went to US AID headquarters a few blocks from the State Department to give a pep talk to those in charge of handing out development assistance to those in need around the world.
Clinton has outlined her general views on moving the department ahead in tough budgetary times. And she got a big round of laughter and applause when answering one question about using science as a tool for public diplomacy by saying she had spoken about the subject as a senator and in her recent campaign.
With all the major policy areas—Iraq, Afghanistan, Middle East peace process, Iran and North Korea among others— under an administration wide review process the acting spokesman, Robert Wood, doesnt have many answers to satisfy the journalists who cover the daily briefings.
Finally, traveling abroad to visit leaders and attend conferences, is about to kick in.
Clinton leaves this weekend on a week long trip to Tokyo, Jakarta, Seoul and Beijing.
On her agenda are taking the next steps in dealing with North Koreas nuclear program, the global financial crisis, global climate change, human rights and, in general, representing President Barack Obama. Dont look for any big changes in policy pronouncements, her aides say, but just getting out from behind her desk should be a welcome relief. (ANI)
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