As a retired member of the United States Foreign Service, I was proud to represent American interests and values in while working in U.S. Embassies in ten countries (Afghanistan, China, Fiji, India, Mongolia, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu) over my 14 years of service. I write this as Foreign Service Day approaches on May 1st, intended to honor our active duty Foreign Service members serving overseas and in Washington, DC.
Members of the U.S. Foreign Service, which includes personnel in the State Department, U.S. Agency for International Development, U.S. Department of Agriculture and other agencies are dedicated, hardworking public servants whose mission is to promote American interests, values and national security abroad. As the coronavirus pandemic continues its march across the world, members of the Foreign Service have been working around the clock to bring home 65,000 Americans stranded abroad in 110 countries on over 550 specially arranged flights.
My colleagues are proud to serve their country. This global pandemic struck at a time when the Foreign Service was already overstretched and understaffed. Numerous critical positions in Washington and at embassies abroad remain vacant.
I hope that something good will come out of this pandemic, including the support the Foreign Service needs to best serve America’s security and economic interests abroad, including creating numerous opportunities for the citizens of the great Cowboy State of Wyoming.
DANIEL MILLER, Buffalo
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