Hillary Clinton's speech to a conference at Georgetown University is being talked about more for what wasn't there than for what was. Addressing an audience of about 350 in an auditorium that held 700--few of them students--photos circulated on Twitter showing empty seats on the floor and bare balcony seating.
A Ready for Hillary intern tweeted in response:
And a student organizer manning the door told CBS News the event was only posted to a small group of people, saying, "We can't publicize events with Secretary too far in advance because of security reasons." Georgetown University's Facebook page--with nearly 100,000 followers--posted event details on its page two days ago. In fact, events featuring Clinton are often announced far in advance. Her Boston speech Thursday was announced Nov. 6, and on Monday, local media announced she would be dropping by Winnipeg on Jan. 21 for an address.
Those who did show up to hear Clinton were largely members of the faculty and those who were attending the conference, which was on women's roles in conflict and peacekeeping. Clinton told the mostly female audience at Georgetown's Healy Hall that the increased inclusion of women is integral to the implementation of "smart power."
"Women leaders, it has been found, are good at building coalitions across ethnic and sectarian lines and speaking up for other marginalized groups," she said.
The biggest round of applause came as Clinton praised Norway's minister of defense, who has expanded military service opportunities for women and made increasing the proportion of women in armed forces a top priority, "I appreciate very much having the Defense Minister here. She belongs to a small but fierce club of women who are proving they can defend their countries as well as any man."
But she called Syria a challenging environment, one with little potential for "change in the short term. Clinton said she favored humanitarian aid for the Peshmerga units, most of which are integrated, and some even all women.