Thursday, December 14, 2017

Julia and Paul Child: Blast from the Past on U.S. public Diplomacy




Image, not from entry (assume it's authentic) from

Paul Cushing Child

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Paul Cushing Child
BornJanuary 15, 1902
Montclair, New Jersey, US
DiedMay 12, 1994 (aged 92)
Lexington, Massachusetts, US
Occupation
Spouse(s)Julia Child
(1946–1994; his death)
Paul Cushing Child (January 15, 1902 – May 12, 1994) was an American civil servant and diplomat. He is best known as the husband of celebrity chef Julia Child.

Early life[edit]

Child was born in Montclair, New Jersey, on January 15, 1902, to Bertha Cushing and Charles Tripler Child.[1] When he and his twin brother Charles were six months old, their father died and the twins moved with their mother to her family's home in Boston, where Paul attended Boston Latin School. He took an extension course at Columbia College and later became a teacher in FranceItaly, and the United States, giving instruction in various subjects including photography, English, and French. In 1941, while at Avon Old Farms School, he was a teacher and mentor to John Gillespie Magee, Jr., who later wrote the famous poem "High Flight." Child also taught judo and was a fourth degree black belt.[2][3][4]

Government service and marriage[edit]

During World War II, Child joined the OSS. While stationed in Kandy, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka); he met Julia McWilliams, who also worked for the OSS. They married on September 1, 1946, in Lumberville, Pennsylvania,[5] and later moved to Washington, D.C. Child was known for his sophisticated palate. [6] After he finished his work with the OSS, Child joined the United States Foreign Service and introduced his wife to fine cuisine. In 1948, the U.S. State Department assigned Child to be an exhibits officer with the United States Information Agency. [JB NOTE: There appears to be an error here: USIA was established in 1953. Perhaps the author of this Wiki entry is referring to USIS [United States Information Service, a "cultural/informational" arm of the US government, which existed in 1948 (overseas) and then, after USIA was established, became USIA's designation overseas.] While in Paris, his wife took up cooking and became a student at the famed Paris cooking school, Le Cordon Bleu.
After five years in Paris, Child was reassigned to MarseilleBonn, and Oslo.
In April 1955, he was summoned from Bonn to undergo interrogation in Washington, D.C. While there, he was questioned about his political beliefs and the political beliefs of his co-workers. Specifically, he was questioned about Jane Foster, a friend of the Childs' during World War II. Feeling his privacy had been violated through the interrogation, Child and his wife's oppositions to the Senate investigations were reinforced.[7]
Child retired from government service in 1961.

Later years[edit]

Following his retirement, the Childs moved to CambridgeMassachusetts, where his wife wrote cookbooks and he supplied photographs and illustrations for them. Child was also known as a poet who frequently wrote about his wife. His prose was later celebrated in an authorized biography of Julia. In Appetite for Life, portions of the letters he wrote to his twin brother, Charles, while the Childs lived abroad were included as illustration of his love and admiration for his wife and her cooking skills and talent.[8]
Paul Child died at a nursing home in LexingtonMassachusetts, on May 12, 1994, following a long illness. His widow died ten years later, on August 13, 2004.
Paul Child was portrayed by Stanley Tucci in the 2009 comedy-drama film Julie & Julia, which was adapted in part from Julia Child's memoir My Life in France.
***
JB personal note: The Childs and my diplomat Father were friends, in part (I would say) because of their shared interest in gastronomy and affection for France. On Julia Child and my Father's papers at Georgetown, see.

    Fletcher student-led Pakistan trek canceled weeks prior to departure


    Anar Kansara, tuftsdaily.com

    Image from article, with caption: Top view of Islamabad, capital city of Pakistan, is pictured.

    A student-led trip to Pakistan through The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy was denied approval for continuation on Nov. 14, in a decision made by the International Travel Review Committee (ITRC) under Tufts Global Operations. According to ITRC’s documentation, the trip was originally set to take place from Dec. 22, 2017 to Jan. 1, 2018 and was cancelled for a multitude of reasons, including concerns about security, political affiliations, timing and the volatile political environment in the region.

    According to Ahmad Raza, an American-Pakistani second-year Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy (MALD) student at Fletcher, the trip was meant to allow students to get a hands-on experience learning about various aspects of the country.

    “Pakistan is a country a lot of people study about or learn about but they don’t ever get to go to,” Raza said. “You’re on the ground, meeting with policy makers, and meeting with students — a wide range of people, essentially — to get a broader view of the situation of the country beyond just what we learn in class.”

    Claudia Jackson, director of Global Operations, said the trip was canceled after provisional approval was granted by the ITRC because later conversations with the U.S. Department of State showed that security concerns made the trek unfeasible.

    “During the process of fulfilling the stipulations of the conditional approval, both the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) of the U.S. Department of State and an independent global risk consultancy made recommendations to Tufts regarding safe transportation requirements for this travel in Pakistan,” Jackson told the Daily in an email. “After reviewing this need with a provider in Pakistan, it became apparent that it would not be possible to source the form of transportation recommended by OSAC and the global risk consultancy given the size of the party involved.”

    Raza mentioned that the trip consisted of 14 people, all of which had gone through an application process to be a part of the project. Raza, along with Mariya Ilyas and Seher Vora, both second-year MALD students, and Sohail Ali, a Pakistani first-year MALD student, were set to lead the trip, coordinating activities for the group’s time in Pakistan.

    Potential activities included visiting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Planning, Development & Reform, the U.S. Embassy and other cultural landmarks like universities and non-governmental organizations, according to Vora.

    “There’s quite a large contingent of Fletcher alumni [in Pakistan] … so we were in contact with them. They wanted to host us for dinner, for meet-ups and for meet-and-greets,” she said.

    According to Ilyas, the trip was proposed and planned as a Fletcher School “trek.” The Fletcher admissions website states that treks are educational, subsidized trips. Ilyas said that other treks sent students to Colombia, Cuba and Israel.

    Executive Associate Dean of the Fletcher School Gerard F. Sheehan expressed support for the trek in an official letter that also outlined the objectives of the trip.

    “The purpose of the Pakistan Trek is to further expose students to the realities of the country and its people through engagement in dialogue, experiential learning, community service and cultural experiences in Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi,” he wrote.

    “I expect the Pakistan trip, both [as] a public diplomacy initiative as well as an enriching educational opportunity, will help to build strong partnerships and to foster a long-term understanding of Pakistan in the global context,” he added.


    According to Director of Global Operations Claudia Jackson, the ITRC is composed of members from The Office of the Provost and Senior Vice President, the Fletcher School, the School of Arts & Sciences, the School of Engineering, Global Operations, the School of Medicine, the Office of University Counsel and the Office of Programs Abroad.

    According to Raza, the ITRC worked with International SOS (ISOS), a security vendor that works with Tufts for travel briefing and security consulting, to make decisions regarding the safety of the Pakistan trek.

    The planning for the trip had begun in October 2016 and the trip was scheduled to take place during spring break in March 2017, Raza said. However, due to issues with funding and safety concerns during that time, the trip was postponed to December 2017 and the application for the trip submitted to ITRC was withdrawn, according to Ilyas.

    According to Ilyas, the group of student leaders submitted a proposal for the postponed trip to the ITRC on the week of Oct. 15 and the ITRC was set to meet on Oct. 25. However, the meeting was rescheduled to Nov. 1 and the student group received provisional approval for the trip on Nov. 6, she said. The document of provisional approval contained a list of concerns that the group would have to address before the trip.

    In the provisional approval document, the ITRC said it would follow up shortly with more information regarding transportation in the region.

    According to Ilyas, the group leaders had taken steps to begin addressing the issues raised in the provisional approval document, including accommodation and travel. Raza said the group also removed Karachi from the travel itinerary out of safety concerns. On Nov. 14, the ITRC denied approval.

    Ilyas and Vora expressed frustrations with some of the reasons the ITRC cited, saying that the parties involved did not communicate properly. For example, they questioned why ISOS ultimately decided that the size of the group was a problem, even though the trip was provisionally approved.

    According to the document denying approval, the ISOS security team and the OSAC Regional Security Advisor deemed that “chief concerns for a group of this size and composition was that this would be very difficult and would make them a more obvious target to issues such as terrorism and kidnapping, given both the criminal activity in Pakistan and the militant/terrorist organizations present.”

    Ilyas and Vora also expressed frustrations over the “self-contradictory” transportation requirement listed in the document, which they said placed “impossible” demands on the trek. According to the document, ISOS and OSAC recommended the use of armored vehicles for transportation while also demanding the students maintain a low profile traveling. However, the ITRC also mentioned that the recommended security provider through ISOS does not have the capacity to provide armored vehicles for 14 people.

    According to Raza, the cost of the armored vehicles came to an estimate of about $82,000, which was outside of the trip budget. He added that the entire planning process would have been different if they had known about the requirement.


    “If we knew about the cost and armored vehicle requirement, personally I would not have done this trip or even planned it,” Raza said.

    Ilyas agreed with this sentiment, citing another obstacle to using armored vehicles.

    “If you do use armored vehicles, you won’t maintain a low profile. How are we supposed to meet both standards? It’s just impossible and it feels unfair,” Ilyas said.

    The group leaders also said they did not understand the ITRC‘s concerns about the political environment in the region. The document that denies approval for the trip explains that the U.S. administration’s with South Asian foreign policy is liable to change, especially because of Trump’s move toward India and away from Pakistan, presenting a security concern.

    Ali expressed his confusion over this concern, saying that he feels there was a double standard in the decision-making process.

    “It does seem that the perceptions out there about [Pakistan] influenced the decision and it’s not objective in that sense,” he said. “There have been other treks going to other countries which are as risky as Pakistan and the standards were very lax but… for Pakistan the standards were sky-high.”

    However, Jackson said Pakistan generated particular scrutiny because of great security concerns.

    “Pakistan is on the list of countries designated by the U.S. Department of State as subject to a Travel Warning,” Jackson said. “Any Tufts-related student travel to any country subject to a Travel Warning triggers a review by the ITRC.”

    Ali, Ilyas and Vora also mentioned that they were curious as to what standards were applied to treks elsewhere, which were successfully completed through the Fletcher School even though they had travel risk warnings issued by the State Department as well.

    When asked whether treks to Israel or Colombia, which were also issued travel warnings by U.S. Department of State, are required to use armored vehicles, Jackson emphasized that each trek poses unique risks.

    “Each case is reviewed individually with reference to the unique safety risks in each location and the advice the ITRC receives from multiple sources, including, but not limited to, an independent global risk consultancy and the OSAC of the U.S. Department of State,” Jackson said. “The ITRC requires that travel logistics, such as accommodations and transportation, respond to these risks so as to sufficiently mitigate them. Risks are context-specific depending on the traveler itinerary and plan as well as the location.”

    The Colombia trek did not require the use of armored vehicles and the student group did not have any contact with OSAC, according to Julia Barry, a student leader of the Colombia trek and second-year MALD student.

    Overall, the student group leaders expressed frustration over the ambiguity of the planning and approval process. Raza said he does not plan on pursuing the project any longer after having spent over a year planning it.

    “I guess the thing for me is I don’t want any other student to ever go through this,” Raza said. “If there’s one thing I wish the committee could learn from this, like build institutional knowledge at Tufts [so] that students, when they plan trips… from the get-go have all the information or have knowledge of the criteria they’re being judged on.”

    Ali criticized the process, saying it was disorganized.

    “The process had many gaps and there was a lack of coordination between different organizations,” he said.

    Ilyas agreed, saying clear directions need to be put in place.

    “What I would ideally love to see is a playbook of how to organize a trek, and then give me the step-by-step directions so that everyone is clear,” Ilyas said. “This way I can hold myself accountable to those standards… I demand that the standards be fair and it’s our right to know whether they’re being applied fairly across the board.”

    According to Ilyas and Raza, the group spoke to Global Operations about their frustration, who said that they would try to make the process clearer.

    "Meeting Russia" - Public Diplomacy Program for Young Leaders from the United States and Europe


    heysuccess.com

    image from
    EVENTS
    Summer & Winter Schools

    Location (s):

    • Russia
    Moscow

    Overview

    Meeting Russia is a unique independently-run public diplomacy program for young leaders. The program brings together young representatives from academia, government institutions, parliaments, think-tanks, media and the private sector from the United States and European countries as well as from Russia.

    Details

    About Program
    The three-day program held in Moscow focuses on Russia's foreign policy and its relations with the West. Through meetings with senior Russian officials and top experts and exchange with their peers, participants have ample opportunity to address critical issues related to Russia's role in world affairs and to connect with a diverse professional community.

    Meeting Russia seeks to facilitate dialogue between rising leaders interested in Russia and contribute to the discussion about Russia–West cooperation.

    Meeting Russia 2018 will be held on March 21-25, 2018.
    Deadline for applications is December 31, 2017.
    Organizer
    The program is organized and promoted by Creative Diplomacy, a Russian NGO founded in 2010 that works in the field of soft power and public diplomacy. Creative Diplomacy runs public diplomacy training programs for young Russian professionals, hosts public events and helps raise awareness of Russia's perspective abroad.

    In 2018, Meeting Russia is funded by a grant from the Presidential Grant Foundation(Russia). The 2017 program was funded by a Presidential grant provided through the National Charity Fund (Russia).

    Read more at https://www.heysuccess.com/opportunity/Meeting-Russia-Public-Diplomacy-Program-for-Young-Leaders-from-the-United-States-and-Europe-31355#tMiKcZ4WcDmCUzWF.99


    Job Vacancy Director, Public Affairs - Embassy of Australia Seoul


    southkorea.embassy.gov.au


    Embassy of Australia
    Seoul
    Job Vacancy

    Director, Public Affairs

    Position Description


    Reports to: Deputy Head of Mission

    Position Title: Director, Public Affairs

    Position Number: SE001


    Position level and Salary
    : Locally Engaged 6 level with a starting salary of KRW 64,923,060 per annum.

    Employment period
    : The position is for an initial period of 12 months.

    Vacancy Details

    Vacancy type: Internal & External vacancy

    Additional information
    : Send applications to seoul.recruitment@dfat.gov.au

    Please submit application materials in Microsoft Word or PDF formats only.
    Please indicate your full name and the position title in the subject line.
    Proposed published date: 12 December 2017
    Proposed closing date: Close of business on 02 January 2018
    Applications received after the closing date will not be considered.
    Please note: This is a re-advertisement. All applications submitted before COB 06/11/2017 remain
    current and applicants do not need to re-apply.

    Requirements


    Applications must include:

    • Application for Locally Engaged Staff Employment (form attached separately)
    • A written Statement (no longer than two typed pages) directly addressing the applicant’s abilities
    and claims against the position requirements
    • Curriculum vitae
    • Details of two referees who may be contacted if necessary
    Other Requirements
    • He/she is also required to undergo a medical examination to determine fitness for duty.
    Key Responsibilities
    • Manage the workload and priorities of the Public Affairs Section covering media, cultural, social
    media, external engagement, alumni, Australia Korea Foundation activities and ensuring that the
    Section’s efforts align with the Australian Government’s public and economic diplomacy objectives.
    Develop and manage the implementation and evaluation of public diplomacy strategies for the
    Embassy.
    • Initiate, develop and maintain productive relationships with key Korean media and cultural
    organizations, as well as public sector organizations, particularly with respect to the Australia Korea
    Foundation’s interests.
    • Work with section heads on the production of promotional and advocacy materials for all sections in
    the Embassy.
    • Represent the Embassy and/or Public Affairs and Culture Section at meetings, conferences or
    seminars.
    • Deliver regular, high profile, whole-of-government promotions of Australia in the ROK, such as the
    biennial Australia Day event, or events organised by other Australian missions, such as “Taste
    Australia” or G’Day USA.
    • Other duties as required.

    Position Requirements


    Competencies
    • Demonstrated familiarity with public relations and public communications approaches with five or
    more years work experience in communications or media-related areas.
    Demonstrated understanding of dealing with events and media organisations to achieve positive
    and innovative public relations / public diplomacy outcomes.
    • Demonstrated ability to supervise and manage staff and resources, including team-building skills,
    and the ability to counsel and develop staff effectively and efficiently.
    • Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing, including effectiveness in
    negotiation, consultation, representation and contact building with internal and external
    counterparts.
    • A demonstrated ability to communicate with native or near-native fluency in English (verbally and
    written).

    Special Requirements


    It is highly desirable that applicants have the following:
    • Familiarity with Australia’s foreign and trade policy goals, and knowledge of Australia and the
    Australian arts and cultural scene.

    Notes


    For selection purposes each of the above competencies will be considered. In order to manage the
    recruitment process efficiently, only applicants who are successfully shortlisted for interview will be
    contacted. If you have not been requested to attend an interview within four weeks of the closing date
    please assume that your application has not been successful on this occasion.

    A Slew Of Setbacks For India In The Neighbourhood


    Jaideep Mazumdar, swarajyamag.com

    Image from article, with caption: Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, shakes hands with K P Sharma Oli inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

    Snapshot
    • New Delhi has to completely change its outlook and approach towards its neighbours and start wooing them aggressively if it is to avoid the peril of being reduced to a bit player in its own neighbourhood.
    Excerpt:
    Beijing has aggressively stepped up its efforts to gain influence over Bhutan. Since Bhutan cannot directly establish ties with any country as per the terms of a friendship treaty with India – this is becoming a sore point with Bhutan’s increasingly assertive younger population – China has been deepening its public diplomacy with the Himalayan kingdom. China is spending millions of dollars in organising conducted tours for students, scholars, college and university teachers, youths, young professionals, government officials and politicians from Bhutan. It is thus building up a growing and powerful constituency of young people favourably disposed towards China and who are in awe of China’s economic and military might.

    India has been parsimonious on this count, choosing instead to strengthen its military presence in Bhutan. India’s military presence in Bhutan is also being viewed with increasing unease by the younger lot of Bhutanese. The Indian foreign policy establishment needs to realise that investing in public projects and projecting the country’s soft power should be priority areas. India also needs to start wooing Bhutan’s growing younger population and counter China’s influence over them. A lot of tact and imagination is required in this, and India’s diplomats have been sadly lacking in both these traits. ...

    New Delhi has to completely change its outlook and approach towards its neighbours and start wooing them aggressively if it is to avoid the peril of being reduced to a bit player in its own neighbourhood. Apart from structural changes, India’s diplomatic establishment also needs to be infused with fresh vigour and ideas. 

    New Grant to Evaluate U.S.-Mexico Police Exchange


    uscpublicdiplomacy.org

    uncaptioned image from entry

    Global Ties U.S. has awarded CPD a research grant to evaluate and monitor the three-year Police Professionalization Exchange Program between the United States and Mexico. With this grant, CPD will design pre-and post-program survey instruments to capture and assess the impact of the exchange program on participants' professional knowledge and networks.
    This project represents a continuation of CPD's research partnership with Global Ties U.S. and is the latest contribution to our Public Diplomacy Performance and Innovation initiative that focuses on evaluation.
    About Global Ties U.S.
    Global Ties U.S. strengthens relationships between individuals and nations by making international exchange programs more effective. As a nonprofit partner of the U.S. Department of State, they sustain a network that coordinates international exchange programs and brings current and future leaders from around the world to communities throughout the United States.
    For more information, visit their website here.

    Trump's Colombia Envoy Should Know Something about Drug Wars


    David Shedd, nationalinterest.org

    President Trump's nominee, Joseph Macmanus, is not the man for the job.


    Image from article, with caption: A rebel from Colombia's Marxist National Liberation Army (ELN) poses for a photograph in the northwestern jungles, in Colombia, August 31, 2017. Picture taken August 31, 2017.

    Latin America has stood out as an area of foreign-policy interest for Donald Trump since the early days of the 2016 campaign. And so far, with the presidency in hand, the Trump administration has made headway on many of its campaign promises regarding the region—from addressing the crisis in Venezuela to improving President Obama’s flawed Cuba policy.

    Even with the U.S.-Mexico relationship in need of serious course correction, the president has advanced regional policy in meaningful ways.

    Another Latin American country that should rank high on the administration’s agenda is Colombia. That nation has suffered terribly from drug traffickers, intense street crime and a brutal terrorist organization known as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC).

    And those problems have a nasty habit of spilling over into the United States. FARC remains a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization. Colombia has routinely been a leading source in the world for cocaine, and the source for nearly all of the cocaine seized in the United States.

    Washington needs a strong ambassador with a deep understanding of Colombia’s threats and opportunities, a demonstrated commitment to the president’s foreign policy vision and the confidence of the White House. Joseph Macmanus has been nominated to the post, but he is not the man for that job.

    Since 2003, Macmanus has served at the U.S. State Department in various senior capacities in the Legislative Affairs bureau, as executive assistant to the Secretary of State and as the U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations Office in Vienna and to the International Atomic Energy Agency. From 1986–2003, he served at the U.S. Information Agency in public diplomacy roles, and was posted to Mexico, El Salvador, Poland and Belgium.

    Over the last two decades, all U.S. ambassadors to Colombia had considerable experience working on regional narcotics and security challenges. While Macmanus’s career as a U.S. foreign service officer is commendable, his lack of relevant and recent involvement in Western Hemisphere affairs will significantly undermine his effectiveness.

    The diplomatic mission in Bogota is one of Latin America’s most complicated. Colombia has routinely been a leading source in the world for cocaine. And despite the recent peace agreement with the government, FARC fighters still control parts of the country.

    FARC’s tentacles are as deep as they are deadly. For decades, the group financed its Marxist political ambitions with drug trafficking, kidnapping and murder. While branding themselves as revolutionaries, they built a massive criminal empire through sheer terrorism. The over half-century-long conflict with Bogota resulted in the deaths of 250,000 Colombians and displacement of seven hundred thousand more.

    Recognizing that Colombia’s stability was a vital U.S. national-security interest, the United States in 2000 signed “Plan Colombia” into law. Since the plan went into effect, violence and kidnapping rates have plummeted, paving the way for economic growth. Coca cultivation decreased over 50 percent from 2007–12. The current U.S. ambassador to Colombia, Kevin Whitaker, reports that 2015 homicide rates were the lowest in forty years, and kidnappings have declined by 90 percent.

    Colombia’s security forces now train their counterparts in Central America, a major source of U.S. unlawful immigration. Colombia is now better equipped to work alongside the United States on regional challenges, such as the Venezuela crisis. Since 2013, Colombia has been NATO’s only partner in Latin America.

    Plan Colombia also led to the decline of FARC troop numbers and their criminal capability. Whereas FARC forces consisted of an estimated twenty thousand combatants in the late 1990s, those numbers have fallen to about seven thousand. Colombia is also closing out the first year of its ambitious peace agreement with the FARC, ending the fifty-two-year conflict.

    All of this progress came with a cost. While Colombians sacrificed the majority of the human treasure, the United States’ steadfast support and $10 billion investment in security and development helped Colombia’s transformation. And despite the accomplishments, Colombia is not out of the woods just yet.

    Over the last five years, coca cultivation has drastically increased, the result of Colombia’s weakened efforts against the illicit drug trade during the FARC peace talks in 2012–16. Indeed, coca cultivation reached a historic high of 188,000 hectares in 2016, up from seventy-eight thousand hectares in 2012.

    According to the former assistant secretary of state for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs, William Brownfield, Colombia is once again the world’s largest producer of cocaine and the source of 90 percent of the cocaine seized in the United States. Directly connected to this cocaine production surge is the growth of fatal cocaine overdoses in the United States: 6,784 deaths in 2015 alone, the highest number since 2006.

    Weaknesses in the FARC peace agreement itself could threaten the successes of Plan Colombia. While FARC is now a recognized as a political party, it still retains its illicit drugs and assets. The organization can easily use its drug money to corrupt Colombia’s electoral system.

    Further, the peace agreement does not clearly define which crimes will lead to jail time or exclusion from the political process for FARC combatants. Hence, a FARC combatant found guilty of drug trafficking, kidnapping or recruitment of child soldiers could still be elected to public office.

    FARC’s opposition to U.S. extradition will be a sensitive political issue for the next ambassador. As a result of criminal indictments against them, dozens of FARC combatants are wanted by the U.S. government, including FARC’s leading negotiator during the peace process, Rodrigo LondoƱo Echeverri, known as Timochenko. The State Department alleges that he “set FARC’s cocaine policies,” ordering the “murder of hundreds of people” and the kidnapping of U.S. citizens. Timochenko is also a declared presidential candidate for Colombia’s 2018 election.

    Effectively addressing Colombia’s challenges while advancing the bilateral relationship means more than just keeping the lights on at the embassy. The United States needs an ambassador with a direct line to President Trump who can shape the direction of policy. Colombia deserves a nominee who understands Colombia, and who will know how best to navigate the extremely challenging times ahead, not only bilaterally but throughout the region.

    Joseph Macmanus has been absent from the region far too long. And the problems pressing on Colombia are too urgent to accommodate a learning curve.

    A former acting director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, David R. Shedd is a visiting distinguished fellow in the Heritage Foundation’s Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy.