President Obama prepares to address the United Nations General Assembly with solid public support for his national security policies. An approach that combines robust U.S. leadership with U.S. engagement at the UN and another international institutions is paying off - in progress fighting terrorism, stopping the spread of nuclear weapons and supporting transitions away from dictatorship and toward democracy. The past year of transformation presents the U.S. with major new opportunities and challenges. Partnerships like those forged at the UN will be central to both promoting our interests and balancing international responsibilities with our needs at home.
A report in this Sunday's Washington Post on the increased flow of intelligence on Iran from disaffected government officials highlights the growing split between the Iranian regime and its people. This information, which has provided valuable insights into both the state of the regime and the country's nuclear program, might not have been possible were it not for the increasing disillusionment with the government following the election turmoil last year. This intelligence dividend caused by the split between the regime and many of its key people demonstrates the sensitive nature of the political environment inside of Iran. As Congress steps to the precipice of forwarding on tough sanctions legislation to the President, it would do well to account for how its actions may inadvertently close this split, an outcome that could benefit the regime at the expense both of its opponents and our country's efforts to stop an Iranian bomb.
Just over a year ago, President Obama inherited an atrophied American diplomacy, hostile global public opinion, and an agenda that had disengaged from the international community. The last year has seen an American diplomatic resurgence. This renewed American appetite for sustained diplomatic action has produced modest but real results.
Leading a strong international response to the Haiti crisis serves both America's moral and strategic interests. The two peoples are closely linked, and public support for aid to Haiti is very strong.
The response also has implications for regional dynamics, beginning with increased pragmatic cooperation with Cuba. Greater cooperation with regional actors in responding to the earthquake in Haiti responds to Americans' sense of rights and wrong - and enhances U.S. security interests.
As the recovery effort continues in Haiti, the conditions on the ground grow more serious. While rescue workers, aid, and supplies are arriving from all over the world and international cooperation is taking shape, many in Haiti remain in dire conditions. While the initial coordinated response to the events on the ground in Haiti has so far been a positive one, there remains much that American lawmakers, officials and the private sector can do at home to help those in Haiti.
Reports continue to pour in regarding the devastation caused by Tuesday night's earthquake in Haiti. Tens of thousands are feared dead with perhaps millions needing assistance. A major factor in Haiti's recent success has been the increased attention and involvement of the international community, which has helped Haiti to move in the right direction.
American efforts to work closely with the international community on Haiti's recovery, just as the recent work to help lift Haiti up, will be pivotal and will need to continue long after this tragic story has receded from the headlines.
Yesterday afternoon an earthquake of a magnitude of 7.0 struck Haiti, wreaking widespread destruction and loss of life. Recovery assistance from the United States can make a pivotal difference to the people of Haiti, but that plan must be integrated across the U.S. government for it to quickly and effectively help put Haiti back on a path toward stability.