THE BLOG

21st Century Statecraft: Texting for Swat Valley Refugee Assistance

07/06/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

In Pakistan's Swat Valley, nearly 2.4 million people have fled their
homes after rejecting the violence of the Taliban, and hundreds of
thousands now live in tented refugee camps that are in critical need
of funding for water, food, medicine, and shelter. Responding to this
crisis, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in addition to pledging
$110 million of humanitarian assistance, has brought the relief
efforts to the fingertips of any American with a cell phone.

Just text to 20222, just the text "swat", and that sends five bucks to help people out who really need a break.

This new media program, and others like it, are part of the State Department's
commitment to "21st century statecraft" which encourages diplomatic
efforts not just from one government to another, but from government
to people, people to government, and, as with the "Text Swat"
initiative, people to people.