Secretary of State John Kerry’s airplane touched down at Le Bourget airport on the evening of March 26. The morning of March 27, Secretary Kerry and his French counterpart Laurent Fabius met for 90 minutes over breakfast at the French Foreign Ministry. Secretary Kerry and Minister Fabius had plenty to discuss: Mali, Syria, Iran, Afghanistan, the Middle East Peace Process. The exchange was what professional diplomats call a “working meeting” — a focused, in-depth, and candid discussion.
Following his meeting at the Foreign Ministry, Secretary Kerry traveled to the other side of the Seine, where he met at Ambassador Rivkin’s residence with a group of prominent French business leaders from many different sectors of the economy. Our nations share the common goal of global economic prosperity and our bilateral trade relationship alone has already created hundreds of thousands… more »
We were all waiting for lunch to finish and Secretary Kerry to come striding through the ornate double doors that lead into the “Salon de l’Horloge” with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius.
Built by Napoleon III in 1855, “ornate” doesn’t begin to describe the Salon de l’Horloge, whose antique clock reminded all that the presser was now 45 minutes late. Framed in the floor to ceiling windows of the Quai d’Orsay was postcard Paris: “bateaux mouches” were plying the flooded Seine, and the elongated domes of Sacre Coeur could be seen on Montmartre in the distance, still showing traces of snow from a few days earlier.
Secretary Kerry Delivers Remarks With French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius
SECRETARY KERRY: (In French - Via interpreter) Thank you very much, Minister. Thank you for your warm hospitality. Thank you very much for welcoming us here today. It’s a great pleasure for me to be here with Foreign Minister Fabius. We just finished one of those wonderful French lunches that have been drawing Americans to Paris for centuries. Of course, it’s a privilege to share any meal with Laurent. He is a trusted friend, a steadfast ally, and a valued partner. And I would like to thank him for all of these. France, as you know, is the oldest ally of the United States, so we would like to thank you also for that. And now I will speak in English, because otherwise I would not be allowed to return back home. (Laughter.)
(In English.) I think it’s worth saying in both languages that France is America’s oldest ally, our first friend, and France helped to shape America and helped it to be the America it is today. As our first diplomatic partner, France taught us what happens in one nation can affect what happens in every other nation. For more than 200 years, we have stood together in battle, from the siege of Yorktown to the liberation of Paris, to today, and we’ve also stood together for peace, most importantly. We continue to advance the cause of human liberty and to champion universal values that really built our sister republics. Standing here in Paris today, I think of someone else who lived in Boston and Europe as a young man, Benjamin Franklin, and his patriotic compatriot Thomas Jefferson, the first Secretary of State. Those two geniuses, literally, would walk the streets of Paris discussing Voltaire and Rousseau and debating in this city’s famous salons, and formulating ideas that lit up the world. MORE
From February 24 to March 6, Secretary of State John Kerry is traveling to the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. Follow his trip on www.state.gov.
The United States conducted the world’s first nuclear explosive test, codenamed “Trinity,” 67 years ago this month in the southern New Mexico desert. The atomic age was born.
The former Soviet Union conducted a test of its own nuclear device four years later, sparking an arms race that saw more than 2,000 nuclear explosive tests in the decades to follow.
The Trinity Test had an explosive yield of 10 kilotons (releasing an energy equivalent of 10,000 metric tons of dynamite). The test was literally an earthshaking feat in the fields of science and technology, but also a sobering moment for those involved. It ushered in nearly two decades of further atmospheric testing of nuclear devices.
“[It was] an awesome and foul display,” Harvard Physicist and Trinity Test Director Kenneth Bainbridge said.
On June 27-29, the State Department welcomed the other members of the P5 — China, France, Russia, and the United Kingdom — to discuss the implementation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Senior policy and defense officials and technical staff from these four countries and the United States continued the dialogue that the permanent members of the UN Security Council — the P5 — are having to advance their nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament commitments under the 2010 NPT Review Conference’s Action Plan.
The Action Plan reflects the understanding that efforts to strengthen the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty must be balanced among the three pillars of the NPT: countries with nuclear weapons will move toward nuclear disarmament, countries without nuclear weapons will not acquire them, and all members in compliance with their nonproliferation… more »