Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton Connects Marshall Plan and Arab Spring

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U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton drew parallels between the Marshall Plan and the Arab Spring in her remarks after accepting the George C. Marshall Foundation Award last week in Washington.

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And today, as the Arab Spring unfolds… some principles of the plan apply again. As Marshall did in 1947, we must understand that the roots of the revolution and the problems that it sought to address are not just political but profoundly economic as well.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton drew parallels between the Marshall Plan and the Arab Spring in her remarks after accepting the George C. Marshall Foundation Award last week in Washington.

She said on the eve of the anniversary of George C. Marshall’s Marshall Plan speech at Harvard in 1947, “Now many of us think of the Marshall Plan in concrete terms, literally. The allies won the war with guts and valor, and the Marshall Plan won the peace with bricks and mortar. But there was more to the plan than constructing buildings and bridges. Marshall knew the importance of economic growth to build stability, democracy, and security, not only in Europe but everywhere.”

Connecting the tenets of the enormously successful foreign policy program known as the Marshall Plan and recent populist uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, Secretary Clinton said, “And today, as the Arab Spring unfolds… some principles of the plan apply again, especially in Egypt and Tunisia. As Marshall did in 1947, we must understand that the roots of the revolution and the problems that it sought to address are not just political but profoundly economic as well.

“An extraordinary entrepreneurial spirit is waiting to be tapped in countries like Egypt and Tunisia. Their people have the talent and the drive to build resilient economies and enduring democracies. If we support their efforts, we can help them unlock the region’s potential, rebuild their dignity, and realize their hopes. And I argue very strongly, by doing so we will advance our own security,” she said.

Secretary Clinton received the 2011 George C. Marshall Foundation Award on June 2 at a gala dinner in Washington for her support of the U.S. military and its soldiers, families and veterans, for her passionate advocacy on behalf of women and children whose voices are not being heard, and for her relentless devotion to spreading the highest ideals of democracy across the globe.

Past recipients of the Marshall Foundation Award have included Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, former President George H. W. Bush, General Colin Powell, USA (Ret.), David Rockefeller, and in 2010, Frederick W. Smith, chairman, president and CEO of FedEx, among others.

The George C. Marshall Foundation, located in Lexington, Virginia, perpetuates Marshall’s example through its leadership, scholarship and statesmanship programs.

As U.S. Army Chief of Staff during World War II and later as Secretary of State, Marshall was the architect of the Allies’ victory and the prime mover behind the European Recovery Plan (“The Marshall Plan”) that restored the economy of war-ravaged Europe. He served as Secretary of Defense during the Korean War and was a president of the American Red Cross.

To read or view the entire address, go to http://www.marshallfoundation.org or http://www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2011/06/164943.htm

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