Following a tragic day in Libya that saw the death of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other diplomats, protests have erupted in front of U.S. missions throughout the Arab world. Last night, the grounds of the American Embassy in Sana’a, Yemen, was stormed before security forces pushed the demonstrators back.
Back stateside, Republican candidate Mitt Romney criticized the Obama administration and the State Department for a statement issued by the American Embassy in Cairo, in which GOP nominee claimed was sympathetic to the attackers. President Obama and congressional Democrats and Republicans alike have denounced Romney’s remarks, saying he was injecting politics into the crisis. (Find out more on the timeline of events unfolding in the Middle East here, and read about our reporting on Romney’s foreign policy here.)
Though the U.S. wields an impressive military arsenal and is still an economic force to be reckoned with, dealing with the current protests requires delicate diplomatic maneuvering, and not an “America-love-it-or-leave-it” attitude. Why? According to former Secretary of State Madeline Albright, the American image and how we conduct our diplomatic affairs matters aboard for a simple reason: we can’t do everything by ourselves.