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National Security Strategy 2010

Successful engagement will depend upon the effective use and integration of different elements of American power. Our diplomacy and development capabilities must help prevent conflict, spur economic growth, strengthen weak and failing states, lift people out of poverty, combat climate change and epidemic disease, and strengthen institutions of democratic governance. Our military will continue strengthening its capacity to partner with foreign counterparts, train and assist security forces, and pursue military-to-military ties with a broad range of governments. We will continue to foster economic and financial transactions to advance our shared prosperity. And our intelligence and law enforcement agencies must cooperate effectively with foreign governments to anticipate events, respond to crises, and provide safety and security.
Finally, we will pursue engagement among peoples—not just governments—around the world. The United States Government will make a sustained effort to engage civil society and citizens and facilitate increased connections among the American people and peoples around the world—through efforts ranging from public service and educational exchanges, to increased commerce and private sector partnerships. In many instances, these modes of engagement have a powerful and enduring impact beyond our borders, and are a cost-effective way of projecting a positive vision of American leadership. Time and again, we have seen that the best ambassadors for American values and interests are the American people—our businesses, nongovernmental organizations, scientists, athletes, artists, military service members, and students.
Facilitating increased international engagement outside of government will help prepare our country to thrive in a global economy, while building the goodwill and relationships that are invaluable to sustaining American leadership. It also helps leverage strengths that are unique to America—our diversity and diaspora populations, our openness and creativity, and the values that our people embody in their own lives.
Promoting a Just and Sustainable International Order
Our engagement will underpin a just and sustainable international order—just, because it advances mutual interests, protects the rights of all, and holds accountable those who refuse to meet their responsibilities; sustainable because it is based on broadly shared norms and fosters collective action to address common challenges.
This engagement will pursue an international order that recognizes the rights and responsibilities of all nations. As we did after World War II, we must pursue a rules-based international system that can advance our own interests by serving mutual interests. International institutions must be more effective and representative of the diffusion of influence in the 21st century. Nations must have incentives to behave responsibly, or be isolated when they do not. The test of this international order must be the cooperation it facilitates and the results it generates—the ability of nations to come together to confront common challenges like violent extremism, nuclear proliferation, climate change, and a changing global economy.

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