Call Also Comes For International Help In Internal Conflicts

HONOLULU, Hawaii (August 7, 2002) -- U.S. foreign policy needs to take a broad approach that includes the war on terrorism as one of many important issues, the U.S. ambassador to Korea said today at the East-West Center's annual Senior Policy Seminar.

"Most nations in the world don't see it (Sept. 11) as the be-all and end-all," said Thomas Hubbard, finishing three days of discussions with 25 senior U.S. and Asia-Pacific policy makers, diplomats and academics. "They want engagement on individual problems. The world looks to the United States for leadership but not with a cookie-cutter approach."

At a luncheon speech, Hubbard, former ambassador to the Philippines, said Sept. 11 had created difficult issues that called for a new understanding and approach to public diplomacy, one in which "substance is important but also rhetoric and style."

"The world has great expectations of America and U.S. diplomacy. At the same time there is considerable resentment about the overwhelming (U.S.) presence." While the United States as the predominant power in the world today wields a "big stick...it's important to spend more time listening to other people and, from time to time, speaking more softly."

The Sept. 11 attacks also opened new opportunities for cooperation with such countries as China, Russia, India and Pakistan, Hubbard said.

Wiryono Sastrohandoyo, Indonesia's chief negotiator in peace talks with the Free Aceh Movement, named the internal conflicts "plaguing" many countries as one problem that demands international cooperation. From 1989-2000, the world saw 111 armed intrastate conflicts relying mainly on small-arms weapons that are easily available and mastered by untrained fighters and children. The conflicts led to 22 million refugees and 24 million displaced people, with international small-arms smuggling a "dark side of globalism."

Wiryono, also a luncheon speaker, called Indonesia one of the "countries in crisis" where internal conflicts have discouraged both domestic and international investment as well as tourism. "Small-arms proliferation affects security, human rights and development. We need to galvanize international support to help resolve internal conflicts."

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