It’s award show season. On the heels of last week’s 71st Primetime Emmy Awards, Georgetown University hosted its own glamorous presentation, the ‘2019 Hillary Rodham Clinton Awards for Advancing Women in Peace and Security,’ last Friday. The annual event recognizes women who have demonstrated ‘exceptional leadership‘ in ‘creating a more peaceful and secure world.’ With a keynote address by Hillary Clinton herself, Cockburn ensured he had a spot in the audience.
Event staff declared that the former secretary of state would not be answering any questions from journalists. Unperturbed, Cockburn entered the palatial Gaston Hall and took a seat in the back row, which was graciously reserved for the press. The seat provided a distant, but commanding view of the hall.
Shortly after some opening remarks, Clinton took to the podium in a leopard-print jacket and warned of the threats of ‘nationalism, tribalism, and authoritarianism’, and the ‘all-out assault on our core values of democracy, free speech, and the rule of law.’ ‘In the midst of all this tumult,’ Clinton noted, ‘women are proving, yet again, to be beacons of hope.’
At an event honoring the service and work of women around the world, the keynote speaker quickly segued into comments about President Trump. ‘[The president] has turned American diplomacy into a cheap extortion racket,’ noted the former secretary of state, in contrast to her lucrative extortion racket during her time in the State Department. Through the Ukraine-Biden affair, Clinton said the president ‘has endangered us all by putting his personal and political interests ahead of the interests of the American people.’
After criticizing Trump, Clinton showed some love for Gen-Z climate activist Greta Thunberg, who is apparently stranded in the United States: ‘This week [Thunberg] delivered a powerful speech at the United Nations climate action summit which should be required viewing for every lawmaker.’
Cockburn suspects Ms Thunberg will be featured in Hillary and Chelsea Clinton’s upcoming book, The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite Stories of Courage and Resilience, which the former secretary of state managed to plug during her 20-minute speech.
While we could assume Clinton’s life is going well — as she handed out awards in her own name — behind the spectacle and glamour, she might be sweating over the State Department’s investigation into her email usage. We all have our private struggles, Cockburn supposes.