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Archive for February 20th, 2009|Daily archive page

Hillary’s return to China and her itinerary…

In Asia Tour, Madame Secretary Hillary Clinton, Smart Power on February 20, 2009 at 8:52 pm

hillary-meets-china

Ben Moeling serves as the Deputy Political Chief at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China and Overall Control Officer for Secretary Clinton’s Visit.

Secretary Clinton arrived in Beijing on a cold February night after a full day in Korea. Two senior officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs were on hand to greet her officially, but hundreds of millions of Chinese people were also eagerly tuned in. The Secretary, or “Xi-la-li” as everyone in China refers to her with a tone both of familiarity and respect, is famous in China.

Speculation about her visit has been intense. Almost every Embassy officer, from vice consuls to the Charge d’Affaires, has received inquiries about her upcoming visit. Our Political, Economic, and Environment, Science, Technology and Health sections have been working for weeks with our Chinese counterparts on the arrangements. Finally, it’s game day. The Embassy is ready.

Press from all over the world have gathered. The Chinese government is giving her an exceptionally warm welcome, and tomorrow (Sat) she will meet with the President, Premier, State Councilor and Foreign Minister.

The warm response to Secretary Clinton’s first trip to China is literally overwhelming. Already, we’ve had to improvise. Our carefully arranged plan for her to meet the staff and families of U.S. Embassy employees had to be scrapped just yesterday because the number of RSVPs shot past the maximum occupancy of the venue we’d selected for the event. Despite the fact that the Secretary’s only available window is late on a Saturday afternoon, 430 people have already said they plan to come back to the office to see her.

I have noticed an incredible energy in the team that has come together to plan and execute this visit. This is not my first “S visit,” and I am used to working with dedicated and professional colleagues, but this is somehow different. Everyone is so deeply invested in the success of this visit, no matter how big his or her job. Dozens of people have come up to me and volunteered to assist. I am excited, proud (and a little awed) to be part of it myself.

Tomorrow is going to be a big day in U.S.-China relations.

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Hillary speaks on N Korea (video)

In Asia Tour, economy, foreign policy, Madame Secretary Hillary Clinton, news, Politics, Smart Power on February 20, 2009 at 8:39 pm

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Interview with Hillary Clinton at Dahsyat Studio… pt 1 + 2

In Asia Tour, Asian Tour, Hillary Clinton, Jakarta, Secretary of State on February 20, 2009 at 7:44 am

Hillary feeling the LOVE in Jakarta

clinton_jakarta2

Interview from SOS site:

Watch the “Dahsyat” interview on You Tube below:

“It’s an hour before show time, and I’m backstage at the “Dahsyat” (“Awesome”) studio in the Four Seasons Hotel, talking to supermodel, actress and host Luna Maya. “I’m so nervous!” she exclaims. It’s not every day that the host of the highest-rated youth TV show in Indonesia is jittery about interviewing a guest. But then again, Secretary Hillary Clinton is no ordinary guest. Used to chatting and joking with famous actors, singers and other celebrities, the idea of talking to the 67th U.S. Secretary of State leaves Maya and her co-host, news anchor Isyana Bagoes Oka, visibly shaken.”

“I try to reassure them, but it’s our Information Assistant Dian Agustin, who points out the irony of someone so famous being so star-struck. Both co-hosts laugh at this and visibly relax. Even so, there’s an air of tension and excitement and everyone from the stage crew to the station executives are anticipating Secretary Clinton’s arrival on set.”

“A daily celebrity- and music-focused variety and talk show, “Dahsyat” draws millions of viewers and is very popular with youth, enjoying many times more viewers than even the number-one national news program in Indonesia. Broadcast live on top-rated national TV station RCTI, the program is a mixture between the Tyra Banks Show and MTV, featuring celebrity guests and performances by major Indonesian recording artists.”


“Suddenly, we get the signal, and everyone snaps to attention. Secretary Clinton enters the room a few moments later and I introduce her to Luna and Isyana. The Secretary greets everyone and walks around the set, shaking hands, warmly greeting the crew and posing for dozens of photos before putting on her lapel microphone. The co-hosts take the stage, to introduce their special guest. The music swells, and right on-cue, Secretary Clinton walks on as the audience applauds.”