At the time, it was a revolutionary statement and helps explain why Hillary is one of the most recognized and revered people in the world.
To millions, she is a role model and a warrior for women’s right to self-determination. As secretary of state, she continued the work of her predecessors, Condoleezza Rice and Madeleine Albright, who first insisted that women’s rights be part of our foreign policy, and then pushed further. Under Hillary’s watch, Obama made permanent the Office of Global Women’s Issues and appointed longtime Hillary colleague Melanne Verveer as ambassador-at-large.
These strides in soft diplomacy may get less ink than, say, John Kerry’s progress toward Middle East peace talks, but they are no less important in the longer term.
Whatever transpires during the next three years, we can be sure the world’s women are watching closely. In 2007 when I traveled through the Middle East with then-first lady Laura Bush, every woman I met was riveted by the U.S. presidential election and wanted to talk about only this: Will Hillary win?
In 2008, it seemed possible. In 2016, barring a Benghazi surprise, it seems probable.
Kathleen Parker is a columnist with the Washington Post Writers Group. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.