International Affairs Budget Is Issue Of National Security, State Department Official Says

Tom Nides, the State Department’s new deputy secretary for management, said the State Department will argue against potential budget cuts by highlighting the essential role international affairs spending plays in preserving U.S. national security, Foreign Policy’s “The Cable” blog reports. 

“Taxpayers want to understand where our money is going. Our view of this is very simple, it is a national security budget,” Nides said in an interview with the blog. “Our budget should be looked upon no differently than the Department of Defense’s budget. The DOD budget is a national security budget, the State Department and USAID, likewise.”

“Nides argues that all the funding should now be defended on national security grounds – regardless of whether or not they are directly related to countries where the United States has troops on the ground,” the blog notes. “Let’s be clear, the State Department and USAID have a national security mandate. We are helping countries through Feed the Future, Global Health Initiatives, climate change, economic support funding – we’re doing that because we’re building up these countries to be more self reliant and have stronger economies. By doing that, that helps our national security,” Nides said (Rogin, 7/14).