Forrestal Lecture at the Naval Academy

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Annapolis, MD
April 10, 2012

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thank you very much. Thanks for that warm introduction, Zach. Thank you Jordan, who will be helping to moderate the questions at the end of my remarks. Vice Admiral Miller and Captain Clark, thank you for the very warm welcome that you have given me. I also want to recognize a long-time friend, the governor of the great state of Maryland, Martin O’Malley. And I understand that we have delegates from the Naval Academy Foreign Affairs Conference, from schools literally around the world, including some Fulbright scholars. So let me welcome all of you as well. I just hope they don’t make you climb Herndon before you leave the academy. (Laughter.)

And Midshipmen, thank you for taking this time away from your studies. (Laughter.) You’ll take just any excuse. (Laughter.) And Plebes, I’m sure you’d rather be sleeping. (Cheering and applause.) And Youngsters, well, you’re still just glad you’re not Plebes. (Cheering.) And Second Class, you’d rather, I’m sure, be catching up on some homework. (Cheering.) And Firsties, you’re already dreaming of throwing your cover in the air and putting all this in your rearview mirror. (Cheers and applause.)

But to one and all, it is such an honor for me to be here this evening. Now, I am fortunate to know and work with quite a few graduates of this academy and to call many of them my friends, including the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Retired Admiral Mike Mullen, and Admiral Harry Harris, class of 1978, who travels the world with me and is here with me tonight. And as I was signing the guestbook for the lectures, I know you recently heard from my former colleague, Senator John McCain, who, by his own admission, was nowhere near the top of his class, but that didn’t stop him from becoming a genuine American hero and a great colleague and travelling companion during my years in the Senate. MORE

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