Daily Video

February 4, 2013

Secretary of State Clinton’s Lasting Legacy

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Teachers: this video contains an approx. 3:30 minute story followed by a discussion.

The secretary of state is America’s diplomat-in-chief, tasked with the job of presenting the country’s ideas and policies to the world and resolving conflicts using words instead of weapons.

For the past for years former First Lady, senator and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has played that role, traveling almost 957,000 miles to a total of 112 countries, more than any previous secretary of state.

During her tenure she has been a vocal advocate for women’s and girls’ rights and empowerment around the world. She has also helped to free political prisoners, overseen the State Department during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and harnessed the power of social media and the Internet as tools for public diplomacy and soft power.

However, several key foreign policy issues remain unresolved, including Iran’s nuclear program, the lack of a Middle East peace process and the continuing war in Syria.

Most Americans say they approve of her performance as secretary, with 67 percent of Americans expressing a favorable opinion of her in a recent Washington Post/ ABC News poll.

She turned over the job to former Sen. John Kerry, who was sworn into office in a private ceremony Feb. 1.

Warm up questions

1. Who is Hillary Clinton?

2. What does the State Department do?

3. What is “soft power”?

Discussion questions

1. What qualities make someone a good secretary of state?

2. Why do you think Secretary Clinton visited so many countries during her time in office?

3. If you were the secretary of state, which issues would you focus on?

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