A Conspicuous Silence: American Foreign Policy, Women, and Saudi Arabia: A Selection from The Hillary Doctrine: Sex and American Foreign Policyby Patricia Hudson Valerie M. Leidl
Hillary Rodham Clinton was the first to clearly state that: "the subjugation of women is a direct threat to the security of the United States." This declaration has come to be known as the Hillary Doctrine, and it was formally incorporated into the first Quadrennial Diplomatic and Development Review of U.S. foreign policy in 2010. If the Hillary Doctrine is justified, then how is it that Secretary of State Clinton never addressed issues of extreme gender inequality in Saudi Arabia? And how has Saudi Arabia sought to export that inequality to other states, such as Yemen? This chapter explores the complexities of the Hillary Doctrine in practice, the realities of pursuing gender equality on the national stage, the strategies Clinton and those working under her innovated to introduce gender issues diplomatically into a resistant country, and other key developments from this encounter and its reverberations across international channels.
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Sex and World Peaceunsettles a variety of assumptions in political and security discourse, demonstrating that the security of women is a vital factor in the security of the state and its incidence of conflict and war. The authors compare micro-level gender violence and macro-level state peacefulness in global settings, supporting their findings with detailed analyses and color maps. Harnessing an immense amount of data, they call attention to discrepancies between national laws protecting women and the enforcement of those laws, and they note the adverse effects on state security of abnormal sex ratios favoring males, the practice of polygamy, and inequitable realities in family law, among other gendered aggressions. The authors find that the treatment of women informs human interaction at all levels of society. Their research challenges conventional definitions of security and democracy and shows that the treatment of gender, played out on the world stage, informs the true clash of civilizations. In terms of resolving these injustices, the authors examine top-down and bottom-up approaches to healing wounds of violence against women, as well as ways to rectify inequalities in family law and the lack of parity in decision-making councils. Emphasizing the importance of an R2PW, or state responsibility to protect women, they mount a solid campaign against women's systemic insecurity, which effectively unravels the security of all.
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