|Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright|
Testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee On Fiscal Year 2000 Budget
February 24, 1999, Washington, D.C.
As released by the Office of the Spokesman
U.S. Department of State
Fiscal Year 2000 Budget
Western Hemisphere | Europe and the New Independent States | Asia Pacific | South Asia | Middle East | Africa |
American Security | American Prosperity | Crime and Narcotics | Environment | Human Rights, Democracy, Rule of Law | Unfinished Business | World-Class Diplomacy | Conclusion
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, good morning, I am delighted to be here to testify regarding the President's proposed Fiscal Year 2000 budget request for international affairs, and to review the principles and practice of U.S. foreign policy around the world.
I begin with the observation that we all know America's purpose. It is freedom. We Americans are dedicated to the rights of all people. We promote government with the consent of the governed. We believe in law. We cherish peace. We seek prosperity.
Having said this, we have not said very much. For it is easy to list goals. Our task, together, you and me, America and our friends overseas, is to achieve them.
About a decade ago, our generation began a journey into a new era. We set out free from Cold War bonds, but were soon plagued by a viper's nest of other perils. Along the way, we have not always put our foot right, but overall we have made great progress.
Because the signposts of the past have fallen, history demands that we be innovators and trailblazers, builders of new institutions and adapters of old.
So in virtually every part of every continent, we work with others to bring nations closer together around basic principles of democracy and law, open markets and a commitment to peace.
We do this because it is right, but also because it is essential to protect the best interests of our nation and people. In this era, our security, prosperity and freedom hinge on whether others, too, have access to these blessings. And the future depends on whether we can help shape a world in which disputes are settled, prosperity is shared, criminals are caught, aggressors are deterred and basic human rights are respected.
I. AMERICAN LEADERSHIP AROUND THE WORLD
The Western Hemisphere
Nowhere are these truths more evident than in the community of democracies we are building with our neighbors in this hemisphere.
Earlier this month, the President and I visited Mexico, with whom we share a 2000-mile border and a host of common interests. We place a high priority on our economic ties with Mexico, and on working through the U.S.-Mexico Binational Commission to enhance cooperation on matters ranging from counternarcotics to environmental protection to immigration. We also have an urgent and shared interest in helping the people of Central America recover from the destruction caused by Hurricane Mitch.
The President's trip to that region next month will remind the world and our own citizens that, though the floods have receded, the hard work of rebuilding from that terrible storm has just begun.
This morning, I ask your support for the President's request for emergency supplemental funds to help our neighbors plant crops, replace schools, reconstruct communities and resume normal lives.
An early and sustained recovery in Central America matters to us both for human reasons and because economic dislocations in that region could contribute to social conflict, illegal immigration and crime. We have a strong interest in helping Central America strengthen its democracies and provide a good life for its people at home. Sustained recovery means expanding trade and creating jobs. These are the goals of the enhanced Caribbean Basin Initiative legislation the Administration will soon submit and for which I ask your support.
It is appropriate that we help our neighbors not only in Central America, but also in the Caribbean and Colombia, to recover from recent natural disasters. For this spirit reflects the flourishing partnership that has grown out of the Summit of the Americas process.
That process began in Miami in 1994 and gained momentum in Santiago last year. Its purpose is to build a hemispheric community based on shared interests and democratic values.
On the economic front, we have forged a commitment to growth and integration based on open markets, open books, better schools and broader participation. Already, we export more to the Americas than to any other part of the world. And the United States is firmly committed to achieving a Free Trade Area of the Americas by 2005.
We are also working closely with Brazil and other countries in the region to prevent the further spread of financial instability.
In the area of security, our hemispheric community has also made great strides. With our help, and that of others, the troubling border dispute between Ecuador and Peru has been resolved. In Central America, after decades of fighting, differences are being settled by ballots, not bullets. And overall counter-narcotics cooperation is stronger than ever, because the understanding is broader than ever that the drug plague threatens us all, and that we must all do our part in the struggle against it.
At the heart of the Summit of the Americas process is a commitment to democracy.
In nations such as Venezuela and Peru, Paraguay and the Dominican Republic, we are helping democratic forces to assemble the nuts and bolts of lasting freedom.
In Colombia, President Pastrana is committed to the rule of law and a future of peace for his people. I urge your support for our efforts to help him end his nation's bloody civil conflict, fight drug traffickers, support alternative development, and create a climate in which the rights of all Colombians may be respected.
In Haiti, the long-unresolved conflict between President Preval and majority legislators has stalled economic reforms and led to the de facto dissolution of Parliament. The Haitian people deserve better. It is in our interest to continue assisting them as they struggle to build better lives.
And in Cuba, we have taken a series of steps designed to help the Cuban people without strengthening their repressive and backward-looking rulers.
Our goal is to do what we can to help Cubans lay the groundwork for civil society and prepare for a peaceful transition to democratic rule. To this end, we have sought to make it easier for the people of Cuba to be in touch with family and friends here in the United States; and easier for the Cuban-American community to help those who remain on the island.
B) Europe and the New Independent States
We will mark this year the tenth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the birth of a new Europe--undivided, democratic and working together for peace.
With allies and partners, we are creating new institutions and adapting old ones to meet the challenges of the new era.
With the President's personal leadership, and crucial help from former Senator George Mitchell, we have supported the people of Ireland in their desire to end terror and live in peace through implementation of the historic "Good Friday" agreement.
We have joined Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in signing the U.S.-Baltic Charter, to show support for the freedom and security of those nations and for their efforts to join western institutions. We are pursuing our Northeast Europe Initiative to build bridges among the nations of the Nordic and Baltic region.
We strongly support the expansion of the European Union (EU) into central and eastern Europe, and Turkey's desire to be part of that process. We are working hard to ease tensions in the Aegean and continue to explore every opportunity for progress towards a settlement on Cyprus.
We are among those striving to help the Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) meet its potential as a catalyst for democratic change, tolerance and respect for human rights.
And in two months, here in Washington, we will meet with our allies to set the course for NATO's second fifty years.
The Washington Summit will be the largest diplomatic gathering at the Head-of-State level in the history of our nation's capital. Together, we will affirm NATO's success in safeguarding freedom, as we formally welcome the three new members who will have joined our alliance--a step made possible by strong Congressional support--and have discussions with 25 other partners who will participate during the Summit's second day.
Together, we will recognize collective defense as the core mission of the Alliance; prepare to respond to the full range of threats the Alliance may face; further develop our partnerships with other European democracies; and coordinate our activities with key institutions such as the EU and OSCE.
The NATO of the 21st Century will confront a changed and ever-changing strategic environment. Possible threats include those posed by international terror, dangerous regional conflicts and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and the missiles that deliver them. As we have already seen in the Balkans, these dangers could emanate from well beyond NATO's borders, and while staying true to our character as a Euro-Atlantic Alliance, we must prepare ourselves to respond to them.
As we do so, we bear in mind that although NATO stands tall, it does not stand alone. NATO and its partners, the OSCE, and the EU form the core of a broader system for protecting vital interests and promoting shared values. We learned in Bosnia earlier this decade that such a system is vital. We face a test now in Kosovo to see how effective the system we are developing can be under demanding and complex circumstances.
As we have seen in both places, NATO's ability to use or credibly threaten to use force can be essential in countering threats to stability. But the efforts of other institutions and organizations are required to prevent such dangers from recurring.
In Bosnia, we remain deeply committed to full implementation of the Dayton Accords. Success here would remove a major threat to European security, and establish a model for inter-ethnic collaboration that is needed throughout the Balkans and around the world.
Since the peace accords were signed more than three years ago, enormous strides have been made. The fighting has long since stopped; tens of thousands of refugees and displaced have returned home; elections have been conducted at all levels; the symbols and substance of nationhood have begun slowly to come together; and we and our partners in SFOR have begun slowly to reduce the international military presence.
It is essential, however, that we not allow events elsewhere in the region to distract us, or conclude from past progress that the future of peace in Bosnia is assured. The nation's bitter divisions are only partially healed. The job of enabling refugees to return safely is ongoing and difficult. Local authorities have not yet assumed the responsibilities for democracy and peace that they must if Bosnia is to become truly independent, united and free.
The Dayton Accords remain the linchpin of hopes for stability in the Balkans. If those accords are to be implemented, the United States must continue to help the people of Bosnia realize the benefits of peace. The President's budget ensures that we will.
As we enter the last year of the old century, democracy and economic reform have taken firm root in most parts of Central and East Europe. However, much work remains to be done in the Southern Tier of Balkan countries, particularly in Bosnia, Albania, Bulgaria, Romania and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. We are helping to sustain progress through the Southeast Europe Cooperative Initiative and other measures that support regional cooperation in sectors such as trade and law enforcement.
Further to the east, towards the Caucasus and Central Asia, democratic change remains very much a work in progress. In many countries, respect for human rights and the rule of law is unsatisfactory and economic reforms have been slowed by financial turmoil.
With the aid of our soon-to-be-created Bureau of East European and Eurasian Affairs, we will vigorously pursue diplomatic and programmatic efforts to help countries in the region find the right road. We do this for reasons of principle, but also because this part of the world is critical to our own long-term security and prosperity.
I want to express my appreciation for past congressional leadership, through Nunn-Lugar and the Freedom Support Act, to safeguard the handling of nuclear materials and lay the groundwork for economic and political reforms in the New Independent States. We will need your continued help this year in providing the resources and the flexibility we need to advance our goals, for we have entered a pivotal period.
Every country in the region will hold parliamentary or presidential elections in 1999 or 2000. We hope to see progress on Nagorno-Karabakh and on withdrawal of Russian troops from Moldova. We will also renew our request this year for legislation to repeal Section 907 of the Freedom Support Act. And we will press for completion of CFE negotiations by the OSCE summit later this year.
We attach high importance to our strategic partnership with Ukraine, knowing that an independent, democratic, prosperous and stable Ukraine is a key to building a secure and undivided Europe. In 1999, we will continue to support Ukraine's economic and political reforms, press for a free and fair Presidential election, deepen our cooperation under the NATO-Ukraine Charter and strengthen our joint nonproliferation efforts. Last week, I was able to certify--after careful consideration--that the requirements of U.S. law with respect to Ukraine's business climate have been met--albeit just barely.
We are also striving to strengthen our partnership with Russia. During my visit to Moscow last month, I found a Russia struggling to cope with economic setbacks, high rates of crime, and political uncertainty. I was heartened by my meeting with leaders of Russian civil society, and urged them to persist in efforts to build democracy and to resist the forces of extremism and intolerance--including anti-semitism--that are threatening progress.
On the official level, we continue to work closely with Russia. Our constant communication helps us to manage differences and make progress on important issues such as the CFE negotiations and Kosovo.
A peaceful and democratic Russia that is tackling its economic problems and playing a constructive international role can make an enormous contribution to the 21st Century. It should not be surprising that the Russian transition from Communism to a more open system is proving difficult. Our own democracy took many decades to mature and remains unfinished. We have an enormous stake in Russian success and will continue to help as long Russia is committed to the path of reform.
C) The Asia Pacific
In the Asia Pacific, we are working with allies and partners to improve security cooperation, restore economic momentum and build democracy.
Our alliance with Japan remains the cornerstone of regional security, and we are reinvigorating that alliance through the implementation of new guidelines for defense cooperation. Clearly, with the world's second largest economy, Japan is also an economic key. We are encouraging Tokyo to expand its program of deregulation, open its markets, and take other measures to restore growth.
There is no greater threat to peace and stability in the Asia Pacific than the situation on the Korean Peninsula. With our Korean and Japanese allies, and China, we are discussing with North Korea the prospects for achieving a permanent end to tensions.
We are also engaged in direct talks with North Korea on ways to resolve our concerns regarding its suspicious underground construction activities at Kumchang-ni and its long-range missile development, deployment and exports.
There can be no improvement in our relations until our concerns about Kumchang-ni are resolved.
North Korea must also address our concerns about its missile program if it wishes to enjoy good relations with nations in its region and improve its standing in the world. Further, the Agreed Framework to freeze and dismantle North Korea's ability to produce fissile material must be implemented in good faith and by all sides--and we will need the help of Congress in ensuring that our own obligations to the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization are met.
Also in East Asia, we have continued our strategic dialogue with China, a nation of increasing economic influence, diplomatic prominence and military strength.
Since our dialogue began, we have seen China move from being part of the nuclear proliferation problem to becoming part of the solution. It has endorsed extension of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty; signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT); become party to the Chemical Weapons Convention; promised not to assist unsafeguarded nuclear facilities; agreed to study membership in the Missile Technology Control Regime; supported peace talks on Korea; and played a responsible role during the Asian financial crisis.
These developments matter. China's international role is evolving in a way that could aid regional prosperity and security for decades to come. We need to recognize these gains, even as we press for further progress.
Next week, I will visit China, and I will bear with me from President Clinton a two-part message. The first is a firm commitment to our continued dialogue and to the spirit of mutual respect with which it has been conducted. We will seek serious discussions about possible Chinese accession to the World Trade Organization, export controls, and the need to prevent renewed tensions related to Taiwan.
But I will also bring a strong message of American concern about areas where we have differences, including human rights. This will come as no surprise to Beijing. In recent months, we have condemned the arrest, trial and sentencing of Chinese who sought peacefully to establish an opposition political party. In our human rights dialogue with China, Assistant Secretary of State Harold Koh has emphasized the importance of Chinese compliance with international human rights standards, including a free press, freedom of religion and freedom of political expression. And we have urged China to open a dialogue with the Dalai Lama regarding the protection of Tibet's religious, cultural and linguistic heritage within China.
As I have said before, in our relations with China, engagement is not endorsement. We continue to have sharp differences with Beijing. But we also believe that the way to narrow those differences, and to take advantage of the many areas where U.S. and Chinese interests coincide, is through regular contacts and dialogue.
Economically, the past 20 months have been extremely painful for many in Asia. Governments have been challenged and millions of people face the prospects of unemployment, reduced living standards and a more uncertain future. Currently, we are working with a number of governments and with the international financial institutions to encourage policies that will restore growth, attract long-term investment, improve financial transparency, sustain momentum towards open markets, and help citizens adjust to change.
One of the central lessons of the current crisis is that nations with strong democratic institutions are better able to withstand the turbulence of the new global economy. This is a message I will carry with me in my visits next week to Thailand and Indonesia.
In Thailand, I will convey strong U.S. support for the government's economic reform programs and the efforts of the Thai people to strengthen democratic institutions across the board.
To Indonesia, I will bring a message of concern and friendship from the American people; including support for free, fair and credible elections and a commitment to stand by the Indonesian people in what promises to be an extended period of economic recovery and political change. I will also discuss with Indonesian leaders the ongoing negotiations to reach a peaceful resolution of the status of East Timor. My emphasis will be on the need to minimize violence, promote stability, and respect human rights as the transition to a new status takes place.
Elsewhere in the region, we will continue to work with ASEAN, Japan and others to strengthen democracy in Cambodia, and encourage a meaningful dialogue in Burma between the authorities there and the democratic opposition, led by the National League for Democracy (NLD). We are deeply concerned by the attempts made throughout the past year to harass and intimidate NLD leaders. Burmese authorities must understand that the path to international acceptance and economic progress lies in movement towards a legitimate and popularly supported government in Rangoon.
D) South Asia
If the past year was a time of disappointment and unfulfilled promise in South Asia, we are working hard to see that the coming year is one of opportunity and progress. Following last May's nuclear tests, we worked with India and Pakistan to prevent a nuclear arms race. Both agreed to adhere to the CTBT by year's end, join negotiations for a fissile materials production cutoff and tighten export controls. And both have taken encouraging steps to improve bilateral relations with the other. The two Prime Ministers just concluded a very successful summit in Lahore. In the months ahead, we will be pressing for further stabilizing actions.
Throughout the region, we will be working hard to advance our core foreign policy objectives of strengthening democracy, enhancing economic ties, countering terrorism, extending the rule of law and promoting respect for human rights--including religious freedom, worker rights and women's rights.
E) The Middle East
In the Middle East, our primary objective remains a just, lasting, and comprehensive peace between Israel and her Arab neighbors.
Earlier this month, this cause lost one of its great champions with the passing of Jordan's King Hussein. As Secretary of State, I knew King Hussein as an eloquent and deeply committed partisan of peace. I hope his death will inspire us all to even greater efforts. In this regard, we are seeking expedited congressional consideration of $300 million in additional assistance to support Jordan during this critical transition period. I have met with the new King and am confident that he will carry on the wise policies of his father; whose passing we all mourn.
Let me also note that March 26 marks the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Egypt-Israeli peace treaty, which remains the bedrock of all subsequent regional peace efforts. The anniversary also marks the beginning of our strategic relationship with Egypt, which continues to contribute to peace and stability throughout the region.
In the months ahead, we will persist in our efforts to help the peace process move forward. We are in regular contact with Israeli and Palestinian leaders, encouraging them to focus on implementing the Wye River Memorandum. To this end, I urge the Committee to support the President's request for funds to help the parties carry out that agreement.
In the Gulf, we will continue to work with our allies and friends, and within the United Nations Security Council, to confront the threats that the Iraqi regime's aggression and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) capability pose to Iraq's own people, its neighbors, the international community and our own vital interests.
In mid-December, we joined our British allies in a military operation that degraded Iraq's WMD capacity and its ability to threaten its neighbors. We have since continued to enforce the southern and northern No-Fly Zones and have repeatedly acted against Iraqi military assets in the zones that threaten our pilots and aircraft.
At the United Nations, we are working within the Security Council to develop a basis for resuming inspection and monitoring of Iraq's remaining WMD capabilities. We will insist that sanctions against the regime continue until Iraq meets its obligations, although we support easing the burdens on the Iraqi people through an enhanced oil-for-food program.
Our policy towards Iraq is to counter the threat Saddam Hussein poses to his people, his neighbors, our allies, and our interests in the region. We must and will persist in thwarting Iraq's potential for aggression. And we will support the Iraqi people's desire to reintegrate themselves into the international community and free themselves from a leader they do not want, do not deserve, and never chose.
Across the border from Iraq in Iran, there are clear signs of popular support for a society based on the rule of law and a more open approach to the world. We welcome that, though we are concerned that Iran continues to pursue policies--on proliferation, terrorism, and human rights--that violate international norms.
Iran's President Khatami has called for a dialogue between our two peoples. Last summer, I endorsed that call and expressed a willingness to work with authorities in Tehran, when the time is right, to develop a roadmap for more normal relations. The official Iranian response thus far has been disappointing, but we stand ready for a dialogue in which both sides would be free to discuss all issues of concern.
America's interest in a stable and prosperous Middle East also depends upon whether the nations there work together to reform their economies, attract investment, move in the direction of democracy and create opportunities for their people. In Algeria, we support a credible, peaceful, Presidential campaign, which will transcend radicalism and violence and carry out President Zeroual's stated commitment to economic and political liberalization.
Under Secretary of State Stuart Eizenstat is leading our North African partnership initiative, which aims to encourage structural reform in the region, increase regional commerce and improve political relationships. I hope we will continue to have the Committee's support for U.S. programs and policies that encourage progress in these directions.
The new century will demand from us a new approach to the vast and diverse African continent, where both exciting opportunities and grave dangers are present.
The good news is that dozens of countries are implementing political and economic reforms. A majority of governments in sub-Saharan Africa were democratically elected. Overall economic growth is a healthy 4.5%. Africa's potential as a participant in world trade has barely been tapped, and yet the United States already exports more to Africa than to the entire former Soviet Union. Moreover, we import almost as much oil from Africa as from the Middle East.
On the negative side, Africa is a major battleground in the global fight against terror, crime, drugs, illicit arms-trafficking, and disease. And an array of immediate crises demand our attention.
We are actively engaged with South Africa and other regional leaders, and with the United Nations, in efforts to end the senseless war in the Horn of Africa, salvage the peace process in Angola, achieve a lasting settlement in the Democratic Republic of Congo, find a solution to the decades-long strife in Sudan, and help the West African peacekeeping force, ECOMOG, try to end the brutal fighting in Sierra Leone
We are also working with the World Health Organization and through USAID to slow the spread of HIV/AIDS, which is causing incalculable human suffering.
It is vital, however, that we not allow immediate crises to cause us to neglect long-term goals. In Africa, as elsewhere, we must build relationships and forge institutions that will serve as the foundation for future progess.
This is the approach that drives our policy and for which I ask the support of this Committee and the Congress.
For example, I urge your backing for efforts to assist the long-delayed and often-betrayed transition to democracy in Nigeria, Africa's largest nation.
I urge your support for our efforts to assist conflict resolution through our Africa Crisis Response Initiative and the new African Center for Strategic Studies, and to approve funding for key African programs such as the Great Lakes Justice Initiative, VOA's new Radio Democracy for Africa program, the African Development Foundation, and USAID's assistance for development and democracy.
I urge you once more this year to approve the African Growth and Opportunity Act, a trade measure that would afford greater market access for selected products from the strongest reforming countries of Africa. This proposal would also benefit American companies and workers by expanding our trade with the largest underdeveloped market in the world.
I ask you to listen to the voices of the African diplomatic community here in Washington who have requested Senate approval of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. This is a Presidential priority. And I invite members of this Committee to participate in next month's first-ever U.S.-Africa Partnership Conference with senior foreign ministry, trade and finance officials from 46 of the 48 countries of Sub-Saharan Africa.
Mr. Chairman, I will be frank. There are those both in and outside of public office in our country who look at the deep-rooted problems in Africa and throw up their hands. Many others throw up their hands without even the slightest glance at the cross currents presently at work in Africa.
The sources of crisis in Africa, which include ethnic rivalry, greed, unchecked ambition and ignorance, are hardly unique to that continent. And Africa does not lack the qualities out of which a freer and more prosperous future may be built.
Many in Africa are laboring hard to heal ethnic divisions, advance the status of women, clear landmines, care for refugees, and build civil society. An increasing number of leaders understand that the continent's future prosperity depends on trade, and are committed to the kind of market-opening and rule of law initiatives that will create a sound environment for domestic and foreign investment. And I have spoken with Africans from all walks of life who admire deeply the democratic institutions they equate with America and urgently desire our help in strengthening their own.
Looking ahead, we know that progress towards stability, prosperity and democracy in Africa will be neither constant, nor universal, nor as swift as we would wish. But we owe it to those striving to build the new Africa, and to ourselves, to assist their efforts when and where we can, understanding that our strategies must be based less on the promise of short-term breakthroughs, and more on the potential for long-term results.
II. GLOBAL OPPORTUNITIES AND THREATS
Mr. Chairman, to protect the security and prosperity of our citizens, we are engaged in every region on every continent. Many of our initiatives and concerns are directed, as I have discussed, at particular countries or parts of the world. Others are more encompassing and can best be considered in global terms.
A) Protecting American Security
The first of these is our strategy for ensuring the fundamental security of our citizens and territory--a challenge that differs substantially from the past.
The risks of Cold War confrontation have ended, and for that we remain grateful. But we face a variety of other dangers, some fueled by technology's advance; some by regional rivalry; some by naked ambition; and some by outright hate.
During the past year, we were witness to terrorist attacks against two of our embassies in Africa, the testing of longer range missiles by North Korea and Iran, periodic threats from Saddam Hussein, and nuclear explosions in South Asia that challenged the global nonproliferation regime.
The new year promises little relief from such perils. In his State of the Union Address, President Clinton outlined plans for further strengthening our military, reinvigorating our alliances, and preparing--down to the community level--for the possibility of a terrorist strike.
The defense of our country requires both the capacity and the will to use force when necessary; and as the President made clear, we have both. But force can be a blunt instrument and nearly always entails grave risks.
So our security also requires the vigorous use of diplomatic tools to bolster the forces of law and prevent weapons of mass destruction and the missiles that deliver them from falling into the wrong hands.
The economic crisis in Russia and elsewhere in the New Independent States (NIS) adds urgency to the need for effective action. The President is seeking $4.5 billion over the next five years for threat reduction programs in this region to dismantle or store strategic weapons safely, secure fissile material components, and engage scientists to prevent the proliferation of WMD expertise. We are determined that no nukes become "loose nukes."
Around the world, we are engaged with allies and friends in a multi-year, multi-faceted campaign to deter and defend against terrorist acts; and to pursue, prosecute and punish the criminals who commit them.
We are striving to ensure effective implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention. We have stepped up efforts to hammer out an accord that will strengthen compliance with the Biological Weapons Convention. We have begun to make progress toward a treaty to end the production of fissile material for nuclear weapons.
And we are supporting the entry into force of the CTBT. This Treaty, sought by U.S. Presidents since Dwight Eisenhower and John Kennedy, holds the promise of a world forever free of nuclear explosions, making it harder for other nations to develop nuclear arms. But if we are to fulfill that promise, America must lead the way in ratifying the CTBT, just as we did in negotiating and signing it. The CTBT cannot enter into force without our ratification, and that of other key countries, such as India and Pakistan. Those two nations have pledged to adhere to the CTBT by September. We should not give them an excuse to delay, nor should we lag behind. I strongly urge the Senate to approve the CTBT this session.
During my recent visit to Russia, I emphasized the need to prevent the destabilizing transfer of arms and sensitive technologies. This is a problem we address not only with Moscow, but worldwide. We provide material or technical assistance to more than two dozen countries to enhance the effectiveness of their export controls. We also share information. These efforts, although rarely publicized, have prevented numerous transactions that would have threatened our allies, our friends and ourselves.
Mr. Chairman, it is especially important that we work together on a bipartisan basis to respond to the potential dangers posed to our citizens, troops, territory and friends by long-range missiles that may carry weapons of mass destruction.
We have lived with this danger for decades. But its character is changing now as more nations develop the means to launch longer-range missiles.
Our policy includes diplomatic efforts to restrain missile development, an option that a number of countries have voluntarily foregone. Almost three dozen nations are cooperating to limit technology transfers through the Missile Transfer Control Regime. And we are strongly urging nations such as North Korea, Iran, India and Pakistan not to further develop or deploy missiles that could be de-stabilizing.
We understand, however, that nonproliferation efforts may not be enough. Our military power serves as a mighty deterrent against any potential adversary. Further, to protect ourselves and our allies abroad, we are working to develop theater missile defense systems, as allowed under the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty.
To protect ourselves at home, the President is requesting $10.5 billion between now and Fiscal Year 2005 for a national missile defense (NMD) system, including the funds that would be necessary during this period to deploy a limited NMD, should the technology prove viable and a deployment decision be made. The purpose of such a system would be to protect against attacks by outlaw nations.
I know that Congress may soon consider legislation that would mandate deployment of a national system as soon as it is technologically feasible to do so. The Administration opposes this approach as too narrow. We believe a deployment decision should be based on four factors. These include a thorough assessment of the technology and the proposed system's operational effectiveness; the status of the ballistic missile threat; and the cost of deployment. A decision regarding NMD deployment must also be addressed within the context of the ABM Treaty and our objectives for achieving future reductions in strategic offensive arms through START II and III.
I have personally made clear to Russian leaders that deployment of a limited NMD that required amendments to the ABM Treaty would not be incompatible with the underlying purpose of that Treaty, which is to maintain stability and enable further reductions in strategic nuclear arms. The ABM Treaty has been amended before, and we see no reason why we should not be able to modify it again to permit deployment of NMD against rogue nation missile threats.
We could not and would not give Russia or any other nation a veto over our NMD decisions. It is important to recognize that our sovereign rights are fully protected by the supreme national interests clause that is an integral part of this Treaty. But neither should we issue ultimatums. We are prepared to negotiate any necessary amendments in good faith.
Mr. Chairman, the threat to the security of America and its partners is most obvious from weapons of mass destruction, but that is not the only danger. In many parts of the world, instability is fueled by the unregulated and illegitimate sale of large quantities of conventional arms. These are the sales that equip brutal rebel movements, such as that in Sierra Leone, and make it harder to sustain peace processes in places such as Angola and Afghanistan.
In response, the Clinton Administration has launched a small arms initiative designed to curb the flow of weapons to Central Africa, and to negotiate an international agreement aimed at making global standards for the regulation and sale of firearms closer to our own. We are also working to negotiate an agreement to control the export of shoulder-fired missiles, which are ardently desired by many terrorist and other criminal organizations, and which pose a severe danger to civilian aircraft.
Finally, Mr. Chairman, we also protect our security by strengthening the rule of law in areas of potential misunderstanding and conflict. That is why the Defense Department and our military leaders have strongly urged Senate approval of the new and improved UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
B) Sustaining American Prosperity
A second overarching goal of our foreign policy is to promote a healthy world economy in which American genius and productivity receive their due.
The American economy is strong today because of the energy, innovation, and skills of the American people. We have the most competitive economy on Earth. Our foreign policy cannot take credit for that; but we can and do support it.
Since President Clinton took office, we have negotiated more than 240 trade agreements, including the Uruguay Round and agreements on information technology, basic telecommunications and financial services. This matters because trade has been responsible for almost one-third of the sustained economic growth we have enjoyed these past six years. Today, more than ten million U.S. jobs are supported by exports, and these are good jobs, paying--on the average--significantly more than non-trade related positions.
I urge the Congress to restore the President's fast track trade negotiating authority so that he may take full advantage of the opportunities for further lowering barriers to trade in American goods and services.
I ask your backing for our efforts to negotiate market-opening aviation agreements, and an international policy on telecommunications that could reduce the cost to our citizens of overseas phone calls and mail.
And I hope you will lend your support to agencies such as the Export-Import Bank, the Trade Development Agency, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, which help our businesspeople find new markets abroad.
The State Department also supports prosperity by using embassy expertise and contacts to provide appropriate help to American firms. Under President Clinton, the Department has worked hard to develop a dynamic partnership with the American business community and to ensure that business interests are taken into account when foreign policy decisions affecting them are made. As further evidence of this, we have included in our budget this year a proposal for a modest pilot program to help our smaller embassies work with our businesspeople to develop markets in countries where other U.S. agencies are not represented.
During the past decade, the trend towards more open rules of investment and trade has helped to spur record economic expansion and raise living standards in much of the world. Over the past 18 months, however, the financial crisis has applied the brakes to many national economies and plunged a number, particularly in East Asia, into reverse. Although the U.S. economy has remained healthy, important sectors such as agriculture, aircraft and steel have been adversely affected by shrinking export markets and increased pressure from low-priced imports.
We have responded on two levels. First, we have rigorously enforced our laws against unfair trade. For example, the Administration expedited consideration of hot-rolled steel antidumping cases; helped persuade Korea to curtail government support for its steel industry; and urged the EU to take more steel imports. These efforts have borne some fruit. Imports of steel mill products in December were 32 percent lower than in November.
More broadly, President Clinton has responded with proposals designed to restore world economic growth, reform international financial institutions, ensure fair treatment for U.S. workers and firms, and assist our trading partners in improving the management of their financial sectors.
We have encouraged Japan to implement reforms that would help make that country once again an engine of economic expansion. We have joined forces with the World Bank and the IMF to prevent the financial contagion from spreading further and to meet urgent humanitarian needs. And we have made it clear, in promoting trade and supporting the role of the international financial institutions, that serious consideration must be given to environmental and worker standards.
Unfortunately, there are no quick or simple solutions to the problems many countries now face. Success in the global economy requires sound fiscal and monetary policies, transparent financial systems, good governance and the rule of law. It is no accident that nations with these attributes have fared best in the current crisis.
Nations with deeper problems must take the tough steps required to develop broad-based and accountable democratic institutions that will earn investor confidence and engender public support. It is in our interest to help nations that are prepared to undertake these reforms and we are committed to doing so.
One example of this is by calling attention to the crippling effects of corruption on economic growth, investor confidence, political stability and popular morale. I thank Congress for backing U.S. participation in the OECD's landmark Convention against Commercial Bribery. We will be asking your support for a broader convention negotiated in the OAS. We are seeking support for anti-corruption initiatives in Asia and Africa. And, as we speak, Vice President Gore is chairing a conference with representatives from around the world to discuss ways to fight corruption.
In recent years, trade and investment have played increasing roles in efforts to foster development and raise living standards around the world. But this does not diminish the critical role played by professional development organizations such as USAID.
We know that many of our fastest-growing markets are in developing countries where the transition to an open economic system is incomplete. By helping these countries, we contribute to our own prosperity while strengthening the international system, in which the United States has the largest stake.
Over time, we hope that every country will have a seat at the table in the international system, and that each will fulfill its responsibility to observe global norms. This will not happen automatically or by accident. Certainly, globalization and the free market alone will not make it happen. It will never happen without the right kind of hands-on assistance, in the right places, at the right times, from those who understand how the process of development works.
So I urge your support for the varied and vital work of USAID. And I hope you will embrace other economic and humanitarian assistance programs such as the Peace Corps, our contributions to the multilateral development banks and support for vital UN organizations such as UNICEF, the UN Development Program, and the UN Population Fund.
C) Fighting International Crime and Narcotics
Mr. Chairman, a third global objective of our foreign policy is to fight and win the struggle against the hydra-headed evil of international crime. Drug cartels and the criminal empires they finance threaten us every day whether we are traveling abroad or going about our daily business here at home.
President Clinton spoke to this danger last spring when he unveiled a comprehensive strategy to integrate all facets of the federal response to international crime. Led by our Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, the State Department is a key partner in this effort, which is designed to extend the first line of defense against crime far beyond U.S. borders.
To this end, we are working with other nations as never before to train police, prosecutors and judges, seize drug assets, help farmers find alternatives to illicit crops, expose and close front companies, halt money laundering, track criminals and bring smugglers of contraband to justice.
These efforts have paid off in significantly reduced coca cultivation in Bolivia and Peru, and the promise of a more concerted anti-narcotics program in Colombia.
In Africa, Nigeria is a key, and we are encouraged by the prospect of a democratic transition in that country. It is essential, however, that we have the flexibility in administering our anti-narcotics and crime programs to devote a higher percentage of our resources to this continent. Thirty percent of the heroin interdicted in the U.S. is traceable to African smuggling organizations.
In Asia, we are handicapped by the repressive nature of the authorities in the world's two largest producers of heroin, Burma and Afghanistan. We are doing our best to address the problem by working through neighboring states, regional organizations and the UN.
Around the world, we strive to disrupt the vicious criminal empires which endanger citizens and threaten democratic values from Moscow to Manhattan.
There are no final victories in the fight against international crime, but--as our increased budget request for this year reflects--we are pushing ahead hard. Our purpose, ultimately, is to create a tightly woven web of agreements, laws, inspectors, police and judicial power that will deny drug kingpins and other criminals and the space they need to operate and without which they cannot survive.
D) Safeguarding the Environment
The United States also has a major foreign policy interest in ensuring for future generations a healthy and abundant global environment and in working to prevent environmental problems that could lead to conflict or contribute to humanitarian disasters.
The wise stewardship of natural resources is about far more than aesthetics. Misuse of resources can produce shortages that breed famine, fear, flight and fighting. And as societies grow and industrialize, the absorptive capacities of the Earth will be severely tested.
That is why we have incorporated environmental goals into the mainstream of our foreign policy, and why we are pursuing specific objectives through regional environmental hubs in every part of the world.
It is why we are seeking an international agreement to regulate the production and use of persistent chemical toxins that have global impacts.
It is why we are working hard to bring into force better standards for preserving biological diversity and managing marine resources.
And it is why we will be working to limit the emission of greenhouse gases that most scientists believe cause global warming. Last November, in Buenos Aires, parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change agreed to an action plan for advancing the agenda outlined in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. In that Protocol, leading industrialized countries agreed to binding limits, at reduced levels, on greenhouse gas emissions and adopted, in key respects, the U.S. market-based approach to achieving those reductions.
In the year to come, we will continue our vigorous diplomatic efforts to implement the Buenos Aires work plan and to encourage developing country participation, without which international efforts to control global warming cannot succeed.
E) Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law
American policy is to promote democracy, the rule of law, religious tolerance and human rights.
We believe, and the Universal Declaration on Human Rights affirms, that "the will of the people...expressed in periodic elections" should be the basis of government everywhere. We are working actively to promote the observation of this principle around the world.
Earlier in this statement, I mentioned some of the specific programs we use to aid democratic transitions, support free and fair elections and help democratic forces build civil society.
These programs reflect our ideals and serve our interests.
When we support democratic leaders, we are aiding our natural partners and helping to forge a community of democratic nations that will work together to defend freedom where it exists and promote it where it does not.
We also know from experience that democratic governments tend to be more successful at preventing conflicts and coping with the turbulence of the global market than regimes that do not answer to the people.
Our support for the right to democracy is part of our broader effort to elevate global standards of human rights and respect for the rule of law. Our goal is to enter the 21st Century moving ahead in these areas, not just settling for the status quo.
Accordingly, the United States will continue to support democratic ideals and institutions however and wherever we can effectively do so.
We will continue to advocate increased respect for human rights, vigorously promote religious freedom and firmly back the international criminal tribunals for Rwanda and the Former Yugoslavia.
We will support efforts to help women gain fair access to the levers of economic and political power, work with others to end the pernicious trafficking in women and girls, and renew our request for Senate approval of the Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.
As the President pledged in his State of the Union Address, we will continue working through the International Labor Organization to raise core labor standards, and to conclude a treaty that would ban abusive child labor.
And we will remain leaders in the international effort to prevent harm to civilians from anti-personnel landmines. Through the President's "Demining 2010" Initiative, we are working with official and nongovernmental organizations everywhere to detect, map, mark and destroy mines; increase mine awareness; improve mine detection technology; and care for the victims of mines.
III. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
Mr. Chairman, perhaps the best way to begin the new year's work is to finish with old business. We have been trying, it seems forever, to find a way to encourage further reform while meeting America's obligation to pay our arrears to the United Nations and other international organizations.
This stalemate has dragged on far too long. We need to stop treating the United Nations like a political football. We need a fresh start based on a bipartisan consensus that falls somewhere between those who have nothing but praise for the UN and those who would like nothing better than to bury it. Most Americans are in this mainstream.
With their backing in mind, we need an approach that is realistic, grounded in U.S. interests, and based on a small number of constructive and pragmatic principles, of which I would offer four.
First, we should recognize that the United States has important interests in the work that the UN and other international organizations do. These range from our security interest in UN peacekeeping and multilateral sanctions against Iraq and Libya; to our economic interest in the protection of intellectual property rights and fair worker standards; to our humanitarian interest in feeding children, fighting disease and caring for the world's refugees.
Second, we should be realistic in our demands and expectations of the UN. The UN provides no guarantee of global peace or prosperity. But in peacekeeping, development and other areas, it can play a vital role as catalyst and coordinator, and as a bridge spanning the gaps between the contributions of others.
Third, we must maintain pressure for reforms that will make the UN more effective. With help from the United States and other leading nations, the UN system has achieved more reform in the last half decade than in the previous 45 years. It is better led, more ably managed and far more disciplined that it was when I arrived in New York as our Permanent Representative to the UN in 1993. We should do all we can to see that this process of modernization and reform continues.
Finally, while insisting that others do the same, we must--as the President proposes in his budget--pay our bills. This is not just a question of dollars and cents. It is a matter of honor, of keeping our word. It is also a question of national interest because we will be far more influential--and far better able to spur further reform--within the UN system and other international organizations if we are meeting our obligations to them.
IV. WORLD-CLASS DIPLOMACY
The efforts we make to advance our security, prosperity and values are essential for our future. But we cannot lead without tools.
It costs money to counter modern terrorists; protect American jobs; cool regional disputes; aid child survival; and spread the gospel of freedom.
But these costs do not begin to compare to the costs we would incur if we stood aside while conflicts raged, terrorists struck, democracies unravelled and weapons of mass destruction spread unhindered around the globe.
Unfortunately, despite strong support from many in both parties in Congress, we have lost ground during this decade. In real terms, funding has declined sharply. We've been forced to cut back on the life's blood of any organization, which is training. We must modernize our information systems. We face critical infrastructure needs. We have seen the proportion of our nation's wealth that is used to support democracy and prosperity around the globe shrink steadily, so that among industrialized nations we are now dead last. And the embassy bombings in Africa were tragic evidence of the imperative to do far more, far more quickly, to reduce the vulnerability of our diplomatic missions.
On this last point, let me stress my own personal commitment to do all I can to protect our people. Last year, Congress approved our request for $1.4 billion to enhance security through construction upgrades, new personnel and improved equipment. The President's FY 2000 budget includes funds to sustain those efforts. And we are asking $3 billion in advance appropriations over five years to build new and safer posts. Meanwhile, I am in regular contact with White House and other senior officials to assess security threats and needs. This is a year-round, around-the-clock, concern.
Given all this, I urge the Committee to support the President's budget request for international programs in its entirety. By so doing, you will serve our nation and your constituents very, very well. And you will give deserved support to the foreign service officers, civil service personnel and foreign service nationals--who work every day, often under difficult and dangerous conditions, to protect our interests around the world.
Fifty years ago, only a short distance from where we are now, President Harry Truman delivered his first and only inaugural address.
In what came to be known as the Four Point speech, he challenged Democrats and Republicans alike to lend their full support to international organizations; to continue programs for world economic recovery; to join with free people everywhere in defense of democracy; and to draw on our country's vast storehouse of technical expertise to help people help themselves in the fight against ignorance, illness and despair.
Today, we are summoned to build new institutions, adapted to the challenges of our time, based on principles that will endure for all time.
In so doing, we must heed the central lesson of this century, which is that problems abroad, if left unattended, will all too often come home to America.
We Americans draw immense strength from the fact that we know who we are and what we believe. We have a purpose. And like the farmer's faith that seeds and rain will cause crops to grow; it is our faith that if we are true to our principles, we will succeed.
Let us, then, do honor to that faith. In this final year of this turbulent century, let us assume, not with complaint, but welcome, the leader's role established by our forebears.
And by living up to the heritage of our past, let us fulfill the promise of our future--and enter the new century free and united, prosperous and at peace.
To that mission, I pledge my own best efforts, and respectfully solicit both your wise counsel and support.
Thank you very much. And now I would be pleased to respond to your questions.
For additional information, see FY-2000 Budget: Highlights and Summary
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