He's been secretary of state for less than a month, but if John Kerry wants to have any hope of beating Hillary Clinton's travel record, it's best to get started early.
Kerry's first trip outside the United States as secretary is a nine-country tour that has included visits to Britain, Germany, France, Italy and Turkey so far, with planned stops in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. The tour got off to something of a shaky start, with Syrian opposition leaders threatening to boycott a proposed meeting with Kerry in Italy, in protest over what they saw as fainthearted support from Washington. But they eventually reconsidered, and in a Feb. 28 meeting in Rome, Kerry pledged $60 million in aid for food, educational services and medical support. Kerry was received warmly in his other early stops: Der Spiegel called him "Europe's Last Fan in Washington," and France 24 referred to him as "'Monsieur' John Kerry" in its look at Kerry's long relationship with Paris.
One of the biggest challenges of his trip is likely still to come -- in Egypt, where Kerry will meet seek to "encourage greater political consensus and moving forward on economic reforms." But for now: five countries down, Mr. Secretary, and 107 to go.
Above, Kerry boards a U.S. Air Force Boeing 757 on Feb. 24 for the first flight of his inaugural trip.
U.S. State Department/Flickr