U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks with U.S. Ambassador to Yemen Matthew Tueller at the Department of State in Washington, D.C., on February 13, 2015, after the Secretary stopped by a gathering to thank Embassy employees and a Department-based task force for their work to safely and successfully evacuate the Embassy after the suspending operations and temporarily relocating staff out of the capital of Sana’a. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
Ambassador Colleen Bell at the U.S.-Hungary Water Polo Match. See related story over at the USA Water Polo website.
Dr. Dénes Kemény of the Hungarian Water Polo Federation (http://ow.ly/J3r6T), invited Ambassador Colleen Bell to be his guest during last night’s match between the U.S. and Hungary at the 2015 Volvo Cup. The American team (http://ow.ly/J3rbu) lost to their Hungarian hosts, but they played a great game according to the US Embassy! Photo by US Embassy Budapest/FB
Shopkeeper Offers Oil Lamp as Secretary Kerry Pays Visit to Muttrah Souk in Oman A shopkeeper offers an oil lamp to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry as he visits the Muttrah Souk – a traditional bazaar – in Muscat, Oman, on November 10, 2014, during a break in P5+1 negotiations with Iran about the future of its nuclear program. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, second from right, receives a briefing from Rear Admiral Scott Giberson, far right, who is the Acting Deputy Surgeon General and Director of the Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service, about the Monrovia Medical Unit (MMU), a 25-bed field hospital that will be used to treat Ebola-infected health care workers, on October 28, 2014. The MMU is expected to open soon, and will be staffed by members of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. Also pictured, from left to right, are: Liberia’s Foreign Minister Augustine Ngafuan, USAID/OFDA Director Jeremy Konyndyk, U.S. Ambassador to Liberia Deborah Malac, and Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) Leader Bill Berger. USUN Ambassador Power is in Liberia to see firsthand the impact of the Ebola epidemic and to press for a more robust response from the international community. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
I visited the Canadian Fossil Discovery Center (CFDC) in Morden on October 17. Along with me was MLA Cameron Friesen, Mordern City Councillor Heather Francis, Morden City manager John Scarce, and CFDC representatives Curator Matt Duda and Executive Director Peter Cantelon. I have never tried to hide my enthusiasm for all things associated with paleo-history. Indeed, at one time in my university career I was studying paleobiology. So, I came to the CFDC with a bit of a background in their field of expertise.
U.S. Consulate Winnipeg Principal Officer Chris Gunning poses with Bruce, the Mosasaur during his visit to the Canadian Fossil Discover Centre in Morden, Manitoba, Canada | October 2014
The CFDC focuses on marine reptiles like the Mosasaur (you may have heard of “Bruce” – if not, check out the pictures, you’ll know him when you see him. He’s a record breaker.). I also had the fortune to spend part of the day with the CFDC out in the field on a dig. It was a privilege to work on pulling some of the fossils out of the ground, but what really struck me was just how many fossils there were. Southern Manitoba is, almost literally, a goldmine of marine fossils. It is really a breathtaking geological situation – and you don’t need to be a paleontologist to appreciate how unique southern Manitoba is in regards to fossils.
President Obama announced Ms. Crocker’s nomination in October 2013. The WH released a brief bio at that time:
Bathsheba N. Crocker is the Principal Deputy Director in the Office of Policy Planning at the Department of State (DOS), a position she has held since 2011. Previously at DOS, she served as Chief of Staff to the Deputy Secretary of State from 2009 to 2011. From 2008 to 2009, Ms. Crocker was a Senior Policy and Advocacy Officer for International Affairs at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She was the Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary-General for Peacebuilding Support at the UN Peacebuilding Support Office from 2007 to 2008. From 2005 to 2007, Ms. Crocker was the Deputy Chief of Staff to the UN Special Envoy at the Office of the UN Special Envoy for Tsunami Recovery. Ms. Crocker worked at the Center for Strategic and International Studies on the Post-Conflict Reconstruction Project as a Fellow and Co-Director from 2003 to 2005 and as an International Affairs Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations from 2002 to 2003. Ms. Crocker was an Attorney-Adviser for the Office of the Legal Advisor at DOS from 2001 to 2002 and from 1997 to 1999. From 2000 to 2001, she was Deputy U.S. Special Representative for Southeast Europe Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Rome, Italy. From 1999 to 2000, Ms. Crocker was Executive Assistant to the Deputy National Security Advisor for the National Security Council at the White House. She has served as an adjunct professor at Johns Hopkins University, George Washington University, and American University. Ms. Crocker received a B.A. from Stanford University, an M.A. from Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of 9/11, U.S. Embassy Singapore (2011)
U.S. Embassy Canada
Hundreds of fire and rescue workers and their supporters participated in the 9-11 Memorial Ride. Here, riders arrive at the Peace Arch. Photo via US Embassy Canada/Flickr (2011)
U.S. Embassy Santiago, Chile
The Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S Embassy in Santiago, Stephen M. Liston, presided over an official ceremony of remembrance for the victims of the terrorist attacks on New York, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania occurred on 09/11/2001 (US Embassy Chile – 2013)
U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv, Israel
The U.S. Embassy, Keren Kayemet Leisrael (KKL-JNF and KKL-USA), the city of Jerusalem and families of victims, gathered at the 9/11 Living Memorial site at Emek Arazim, Jerusalem Hills Park to commemorate 10 years to the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Photo by US Embassy Tel Aviv/FB (2011)
U.S. Embassy Beijing, China
September 11th Ceremony, 9/11/11 via US Embassy Beijing/FB (2011)
U.S. Embassy Canberra, Australia
10th Anniversary of September 11, U.S. Embassy Canberra, Australia. (2011) (Official U.S. Embassy photo by Adam P. Wilson)
U.S. Embassy Wellington, New Zealand
10th Anniversary of 9-11. Commemoration Service, US Embassy Wellington, New Zealand (2011)
Christchurch, New Zealand
9/11 Memorial Service, Christchurch, New Zealand, September 11, 2010
U.S. Consulate General Vancouver
A memorial plaque thanking the people of British Columbia for the assistance they extended to Americans and others on and after September 11, 2001. ‘In commemoration of the tenth anniversary of the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 the United States Consulate General in Vancouver, on behalf of the people of the United States, wishes to thank the people of British Columbia for their support and generosity following the events of that day. Canadians received diverted passengers unable to land at their U.S. destinations, opening not only their airports, but also their homes and hearts.’ Plaque Presentation at Vancouver International Airport YVR Managing Director Larry Berg with U.S. Consul General Anne Callaghan on September 11, 2011.
U.S. Embassy Chisinau, Moldova
Prime Minister Iurie Leanca, accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration Eugen Carpov, laid flowers at US Embassy Chisinau, Moldova in memory of the victims of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attack. (Photo via gov.md 2013)
U.S. Embassy Yaounde, Cameroon
Embassy Yaounde Pauses to Remember 9/11 Colonel Morgan plays the bagpipes during the ceremony. [Photo by U.S. Embassy Yaounde] 2013
U.S. Embassy Kuwait, Kuwait
U.S. Ambassador to Kuwait, Deborah K. Jones and Brig. Gens. William Frink and James Walton, commander, 311th Sustainment and 335th Signal Commands, lead over 500 participants during the Freedom Walk held at the U.S. Embassy in Kuwait, Sept 11, 2008.
U.S. Embassy Paris, France
Ceremony at the Trocadero esplanade in Paris, September 11, 2011 Drapeau américain sur la Place du Trocadéro. Photo P.Maulavé U.S. Embassy Paris, France – 2011
U.S. Embassy Tokyo, Japan
(September 10, 2014) Flowers at a memorial for the Japanese victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks. Caroline Kennedy, U.S. Ambassador to Japan, participated in the memorial at the Mizuho Bank. The victims were working in the offices of Fuji Bank (now incorporated into the Mizuho Financial Group) in the World Trade Center in New York City. [State Department photo by William Ng/Public Domain]
On September 3, the State Department held a symbolic groundbreaking ceremony for the new U.S. Diplomacy Center. The ceremony was hosted by Secretary Kerry and attended by his five predecessors, former Secretaries of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Madeleine K. Albright, Henry A. Kissinger, James A. Baker, III, and Colin L. Powell. Wait, somebody’s missing! What happened to Condoleezza Rice?
Kerry likely forgot about the 93-year-old Shultz, who, though not in attendance, is still very much alive. Or perhaps Kerry was symbolically eliminating Condi Rice, also absent; she was, after all, a key adviser to the man who defeated him for the presidency in 2004. […] The groundbreaking for the future U.S. Diplomacy Center began with a before-noon cocktail reception and ended with the six secretaries outside the 21st Street entrance to the State Department, each holding a silver spade embossed with the State emblem. They dug up about a tablespoon apiece of earth in the 90-degree heat and then were promptly relieved of their digging implements as they exited the construction site via a carpeted walkway. “They wouldn’t even let us keep the shovel,” groused Baker.
Of course not. Kerry had already eliminated one former secretary of state. They couldn’t afford to lose another.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at the groundbreaking ceremony for the U.S. Diplomacy Center with former Secretaries of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Madeleine K. Albright, Henry A. Kissinger, James A. Baker, III, and Colin L. Powell on September 3, 2014. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
According to the State Department, the USDC (http://diplomacy.state.gov), is a state-of-the-art museum and education center that will dedicate 40,000 square feet “to bringing the story of American diplomacy to life.” This will be our country’s first museum and education center devoted exclusively to exploring the history, practice, and challenges of American diplomacy. The $25 million project is funded by private institutional and individual donors through the Diplomacy Center Foundation.
Last May, the State Department announced the contract for building the center:
The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) announced the award of a $25 million contract to begin construction of the U.S. Diplomacy Center—the nation’s first museum and education center devoted exclusively to exploring the history, practice, and challenges of U.S. Diplomacy. The project is privately funded with donations to build a 21st century, state-of-the-art glass pavilion that will become a new public entrance at the Department of State’s headquarters.
GSA will oversee construction and awarded the construction contract to Gilbane Building Company through an open and competitive process. The architectural firm of Beyer Blinder Belle provided the modern concept design. Construction is set to begin early summer 2014 and it will take 18 months to construct the U.S. Diplomacy Center.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry hosts a swearing-in ceremony for U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Tefft at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, DC on September 2, 2014. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]
Below is the brief bio released by the WH when his nomination was announced:
John Francis Tefft, a career member of the Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, is the Executive Director of the RAND Business Leaders Forum at the RAND Corporation, a position he has held since 2013. Mr. Tefft served as the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine from 2009 to 2013 and as the U.S. Ambassador to Georgia from 2005 to 2009. From 2004 to 2005, Mr. Tefft served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs in the Department of State. From 2003 to 2004, Mr. Tefft served as an International Affairs Advisor at the National War College and previously served as the U.S. Ambassador to Lithuania from 2000 to 2003. From 1996 to 1999, Mr. Tefft was the Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, Russia. He was the Director of the Office of Northern European Affairs at the Department of State from 1992 to 1994. Mr. Tefft served as the Deputy Director of the Office of Soviet Union Affairs/Office of Commonwealth of Independent States from 1989 to 1992 and served as Counselor for Political-Military Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Rome, Italy from 1986 to 1989. From 1983 to 1986, he was a Political Officer in the Office of Soviet Union Affairs. Mr. Tefft was a Pearson Fellow in the Office of Congressman Howard Wolpe from 1982 to 1983. Earlier in his career, Mr. Tefft was also a Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Budapest, Hungary; a Special Assistant in the Washington office of the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations; a Political Officer in the Office of United Nations Political Affairs; an Operations Officer in the Operations Center; and a Vice Consul at the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem.
Mr. Tefft served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1971 to 1974. Mr. Tefft received a B.A. from Marquette University and an M.A. from Georgetown University.
Updated on 8/31/14 at 2302 PST: AP and Reuters have an update on this here including additional photos of the rooms in the annex that appear to be in the condition they were left behind; the pantry appears to still have food items, the kitchen and gym did not look looted and the compound did not show signs of the reported “storming.”
Updated on 9/1/14 at 9:26pm PST: ABC News has additional photos of the annex here. Plus this: “Another commander said the group had asked cleaners to come spruce up the grounds and that U.S. staff were welcome to reside in the embassy while it was under Dawn of Libya control.”
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A commander of the Dawn of Libya militia, an Islamist-allied group in control of Tripoli has told an AP reporter that it has “secured” a U.S. Embassy residential compound in the capital city. The AP report says that a walk-through in the compound shows some broken windows, but that “it appeared most of the equipment there remained untouched. The journalist saw treadmills, food, televisions and computers still inside.”
@AmCo15 To my knowledge & per recent photos the US Embassy Tripoli chancery & compound is now being safeguarded and has not been ransacked. — Safira Deborah (@SafiraDeborah) August 31, 2014
We don’t know what that means. Who told these guys to “safeguard” a U.S. diplomatic property? Did they bring their own whiskey to the pool party?
The good news is — the Dawn of Libya militia apparently wrestled the compound from a rivaled militia and neither group set the compound on fire. The bad news is “securing” the compound was apparently done to avenge U.S. airstrikes. If true, just “securing” the compound, a sip of whiskey and having a dip in the pool may not be enough.