Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The topic: A New Look at 1970’s Diplomacy: A discussion of the recently released Carter Administration’s papers on public diplomacy, which were released on June 8.

Public Diplomacy Council

7:52 PM (1 hour ago)
RSOVP to MS Burke
Good Evening Friends and Colleagues,

The next First Monday lunch forum will actually take place on the second Monday of the month, September 12, 12pm noon, at AFSA, 2101 E Street, NW [afsa.org].

Speakers: Kristin Ahlberg, Historian for the U.S. Department of State; Nicholas J. Cull, Professor of Diplomacy and Director of Masters of Public Diplomacy Program at USC Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism; and Adam Howard, Adjunct Assistant Professor of History and International Affairs at George Washington University. The forum will be moderated by John Brown, Editor of John Brown’s Public Diplomacy Press and Blog Review.

For those of you who missed last month’s lunch forum with Edward Schumacher-Matos, Director of the Edward R. Murrow Center for a Digital World at Tufts University’s Fletcher School, video of his remarks are posted at https://www.c-span.org/video/?413402-1/edward-schumachermatos-discusses-future-public-diplomacy

Also, below are several events and news items that may be of interest to you:

Tue 8/23 4-6 p.m. Screening and discussion: "American Umpire" documentary on US international role. Details and RSVP:http://www.cato.org/events/american-umpire 

Wed 8/24 10 a.m. Discussion of democracy, governance and project implementation in Egypt, with Dr. Khaled Zakaria Amin, Senior Advisor for Policy and Planning for AECOM's USAID/Egypt-funded Effective Planning and Services Project  Details and RSVP: http://www.sidw.org/event-details/255

Thu 8/25 6:30-8 p.m. Global health diplomacy, with Jimmy Kolker, Assistant Secretary for Global Affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services

Mon 8/29 10 a.m. Development of social entrepreneurship in France, Italy, the UK, and the USA Details and RSVP: http://guevents.georgetown.edu/event/social_enterprises_in_europe_and_the_usa

1. There was a huge turnout for the Aug. 1 forum. Those who could not be with us can see C-Span's TV coverage available on demand at https://www.c-span.org/video/?413402-1/edward-schumachermatos-discusses-future-public-diplomacy

2. South Korea has formed a Public Diplomacy Council. Should we now be the Public Diplomacy Council of the U.S.? Details: http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/national/2016/08/02/34/0301000000AEN20160802011800315F.html

Best Regards,

Alma Burke 
PDC Fellow

Hillary Clinton and "Cultural Diplomacy" ... (from a Facebook entry, slightly edited) Note from a non-memoir ...

John Brown As I reach a certain age I remember a White House "cultural diplomacy" conference https://www.c-span.org/video/...
at the end of the Clinton administration at which I had the privilege to be a notetaker. The first WH dignitary to appear was the First Lady, who spoke dryly, uninspiringly, sans evident appreciation for "culture" as a dynamic, energizing element in foreign relations -- for a very "oh-so-business-like " 20 minutes (was it that long?) to distinguished cultural figures from all over the world. She could have been delivering a legal brief on how to fix WH toilets -- then, after her rather condescending "I'm so busy" appearance, she vanished....  

Conference on Culture and Diplomacy
Following welcoming remarks, participants talked about the importance of art

How South Korea Uses Kimchi To Connect To The World — And Beyond

How South Korea Uses Kimchi To Connect To The World — And Beyond, npr.org

In 2014, about 2,300 people in Seoul made 250 tons of kimchi, a traditional fermented South Korean pungent vegetable dish, to donate to neighbors in preparation for winter.
In 2014, about 2,300 people in Seoul made 250 tons of kimchi, a traditional fermented South Korean pungent vegetable dish, to donate to neighbors in preparation for winter.
Ahn Young-joon/AP
Everybody eats, which is what makes food a perfect choice to resolve conflicts and foster connections among nations. The concept is called "gastrodiplomacy," and South Korea is one of its strongest champions.
The country is one of the world's best at branding itself through food, using its cuisine as a kind of "soft power" to help spread South Korea's influence. And even as the government supports its citizens in opening Korean restaurants around the world, it pays special attention to promoting that most ubiquitous of Korean foods: kimchi.

Hidden Kitchens: War&food; Peace&Food

This is the sixth and final story in a series from The Kitchen Sistersexploring the role food plays in resolving or creating conflict around the world. Read more stories in this series, and explore previous tales ofHidden Kitchens.
"The Korean government studied a kind of diplomacy using Korean culture, music and especially Korean food," says Byung Hong Park, who is in charge of agriculture, food and rural affairs at the Korean Embassy in Washington, D.C.
"Kimchi is like air in Korea," says Hyunjoo Albrecht, a San Francisco-based chef who grew up near the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), the strip of land that serves as the border between North Korea and South Korea. "It always has to be in the refrigerator in every house, a big batch."
Kimchi is not just cabbage salad — it is essential to the culture of the country. There are hundreds of different varieties of kimchi in Korea, and about 1.5 million tons of it is consumed each year. Even the Korean stock market reflects this obsession: The "Kimchi Index" tracks when Napa cabbage and the 12 other ingredients — chili, carrots, radishes and anchovies among them — are at their best prices.
"When I was young, my mom used to make 200 heads of cabbage, wintertime Kimjang," says YouTube's Korean cooking star, Maangchi.
Kimjang, the tradition of making kimchi, brought together entire villages and neighborhoods to turn hundreds of heads of cabbages into a source of food and nutrition for people who have historically borne long eras of deprivation and starvation. The kimchi was fermented and aged in underground pots or modern refrigerators.
The ritual of Kimjang is so vital to the country's identity that UNESCO added the tradition to its representative list of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity. But the tradition is also threatened, as modern life continues to separate families and make fast food more popular than slow, traditional home-cooking.
"It was the time when the women would gather and gossip. There would be matchmaking," says Sunhui Chang, who grew up in Incheon, South Korea, but is now chef and owner of the restaurant FuseBox in Oakland, Calif. "There would be some marriages that came about during the time of kimchi making."
Hyunjoo remembers the ritual that took place each November in her village: "You wouldn't greet your neighbors with 'Hi, how are you?' but with 'How many heads of cabbage are you doing?' "
The kimchi-making traveled from house to house through the village. "One person trimming the ginger, one person cutting the cabbage, one person cutting the radish," Hyunjoo says. "It's very labor intensive. You need the help of others."
And though Kimjang was a way to bring the community together, Hyunjoo recalls volatile fights between her mother and a neighbor. "They're yelling at each other," she says, "and a few days later they're sitting next to each other cutting cabbage, joking together, making food together."
Chang says sharp gender divisions prevailed during Kimjang. "Men weren't really allowed to be around," he says. "I was always told that if the men started hanging around and touching the kimchi, it would be bad kimchi."
South Korean astronaut Soyeon Yi, seen here with Russian Federal Space Agency cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko (middle) and NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson (right), prepared kimchi for her fellow space travelers aboard the International Space Station.
South Korean astronaut Soyeon Yi, seen here with Russian Federal Space Agency cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko (middle) and NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson (right), prepared kimchi for her fellow space travelers aboard the International Space Station.
Kimchi in space
For decades after the Korean War of the 1950s, the nation barely had enough money to feed itself, let alone enter the space race. It wasn't until 2008 that South Korea chose Soyeon Yi, a woman who had grown up in Gwanju, to be the country's first astronaut. "When I was a kid, I couldn't even dare to be an astronaut," Yi says. "Korea doesn't even have a space agency!"
The government had worked for nearly a decade to invent Korean space food. Ten essential dishes were created, two of which were kimchi (freeze-dried and canned). It is difficult for Koreans to imagine a day without kimchi, let alone an entire space expedition.
"Having kimchi in space, you are far from your home planet," Yi says. "When you eat your own traditional food, it makes you feel emotionally supported."
The kimchi, however, had to be radiated to kill all the microorganisms in the probiotic-rich dish. "After radiation the kimchi became so saggy. [It] looked like it was 100 years old," says Yi. "I cannot say it's a really tasteful kimchi, but still I like it because I can feel my home."
K-Pop, the popular Korean music genre, burst onto the scene with its global hit "Gangnam Style."
"We call the Korean food 'K-Food', like 'K-Pop' music," says Park of the government-created campaign designed to popularize the country's cuisine.
"The government gave financial support to Korean restaurants in the U.S.," says Hyunjoo, who six years ago started a line of kimchi called "Sinto Gourmet" in America. "They want more people outside Korea to eat more Korean food."
The Kimchi Bus
Si-Hyeon Ryu, who launched the "Kimchi Bus Project" five years ago, has trekked to 34 countries to spread his love of the traditional dish.
Si-Hyeon Ryu, who launched the "Kimchi Bus Project" five years ago, has trekked to 34 countries to spread his love of the traditional dish.
Sihyeong Yu/Courtesy of the Kimchi Bus Project
The Kimchi Bus Project was launched five years ago by Si-Hyeon Ryu, a chef and writer from South Korea. Ryu, whose travels are supported by the Korean government, has trekked to 32 countries — from the United States to Argentina to Italy — cooking traditional Korean food and spreading his love of kimchi.
"People on the street know just about North and South Korea," he says, but not much about Korean cuisine. "If I explain about kimchi, they will understand about Korea."
"The Korean government is very conscious of food culture," says Johanna Mendelson Forman, a professor at American University in Washington, D.C., who specializes in gastrodiplomacy. "The proliferation of Korean restaurants is an extension of that culture. Korea uses that 'kimchi diplomacy' as a way of branding itself."
Yi describes a night of kimchi diplomacy in space: "I had a special Korean food night. I made dinner for all other six astronauts on the space station. I still remember one of my Russian colleagues — he tried to tell me it's good. But his face told me ... 'ugh, what the hell it is?' "
"I think food is not just a thing we eat for living," says Yi. "Food helps us trust each other. In Korea we have a saying: Whoever prepares for you the good meal ... you cannot betray them."

Sinto Gourmet Kimchi Fried Ricei
Sinto Gourmet Kimchi Fried Rice
Hyunjoo Albrecht/Courtesy of Sinto Gourmet

Kimchi Fried Rice

This recipe comes to us courtesy of Hyunjoo Albrecht of Sinto Gourmet.

Ingredients (Makes 2 portions)

3 strips bacon, cut into strips about 1/4-inch lengths
1/3 cup yellow onion, chopped
1 cup red Napa cabbage kimchi, drained and chopped with juice saved
2 cups steamed white short-grain rice, chilled in refrigerator
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
Salt and pepper
1/2 tablespoon butter
2 eggs cooked sunny side up (optional)
2 tablespoons green onion, sliced thin (optional)
1. Cook bacon in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat for about 3 minutes until golden brown. Take out bacon from the pan and set aside on a paper towel but leave bacon fat in the pan.
2. In the same pan with bacon fat in it, add the yellow onion and kimchi. Saute until the onion becomes translucent and kimchi is somewhat sweated out for about 3 to 4 minutes.
3. Add rice in the pan and try to break the lump of rice with an up and down motion using a flat wooden spoon or spatula, then stir for about 5 minutes. If the pan gets too dry from rice soaking up the oil, add canola oil or vegetable oil about one tablespoon at a time as you stir fry the mixture of rice, yellow onion, and Kimchi. If you like a stronger kimchi flavor, add kimchi juice a tablespoon at a time as you continue to stir fry.
4. Take pan off the heat, add bacon and butter, and mix well
6. Transfer rice to a serving platter, put a cooked egg on top, and sprinkle with green onion before serving.
IMPORTANT: Don't try to make kimchi fried rice with hot or warm rice. It will turn out incredibly mushy. Use only cold or at least slightly chilled rice.

Bush Institute founding director endorses Clinton

Louis Nelson, "Bush Institute founding director endorses Clinton," politico.com

image from

Former President George W. Bush’s Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy is the latest high-ranking Republican to announce his support for Hillary Clinton’s White House bid.

James Glassman, who is also the founding director of the George W. Bush Institute at the former president’s library in Dallas, told MSNBC Monday evening that Clinton is “by far the superior candidate.”

“She has the experience. She’s got the character. She has the values,” Glassman said. “She is the kind of candidate I support and that, as I say, millions of republicans are supporting.”

Glassman joins a number of former Bush officials in backing Clinton. Former deputy secretary of state Richard Armitage and Lezlee Westine, a former aide to President Bush, have announced their support, as has former Bush State Dept. and NSC official Kori Schake. Sally Bradshaw, who managed two gubernatorial campaigns for former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, has also said she will vote for Clinton if the presidential race in her home state “is close.” Other Bush administration officials, such as former CIA and NSA director Michael Hayden, have been loudly critical of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump but have stopped short of announcing plans to support the former secretary of state.

Republican Rep. Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.), who has already announced plans to retire at the end of his term, is the only elected member of the GOP to date to officially announce support for Clinton. Many other Capitol Hill Republicans, among them Sens. Susan Collins and Mark Kirk, have said they will not vote for Trump.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Media Libels Obama Over Iran ‘Ransom,’ That’s Actually the Opposite of Ransom

Tommy Christopher, mediaite.com

image from

The uproar over the $400 million payment to Iran in January has reached a fever pitch not seen since reporters thought that the plane carrying freed Americans was kept from leaving Iran until a planeload of money arrived, which would have been an outrage. Now, it’s being reported that a plane carrying $400 million was kept from leaving Switzerland until a planeload of freed Americans was allowed to leave Tehran, which is, you guessed it, also an outrage. None of this, by the way, contradicts anything that President Obama said when he was asked directly about it two weeks ago:
The big “revelation” in this case appears to be that State Department Spokesman John Kirby confirmed that the release of the money that President Obama truthfully described as a settlement payment was held up until the freed Americans had departed Tehran, which Kirby described as “leverage.” While it’s to be expected that political opponents like Donald Trump would try to make hay with this, and even for news outlets to inflate the news value of the revelation, it was more than a little bit jarring to hear mainstream reporters like Andrea Mitchell casually accuse President Obama of lying:
As it turns out, this is a popular notion about this story, but no one ever gets around to pointing out what the “lie” President Obama told was. It seems the only real point of contention is over whether or not to call this a “ransom,” because the President did, repeatedly, say we did not pay ransom, we do not pay ransom, for hostages. The truth of his statement is self-evident, unless you disbelieve a fact that no one is disputing, that the $400 million was already Iran’s money. There is no definition of “ransom” that includes giving someone something that is already theirs.
What makes Mitchell’s smear on President Obama particularly disgusting, though, is that to the extent anyone could possibly construe this incident as direct consideration of the freeing of Americans, this would be the exact opposite of a ransom. A ransom is something that you pay in order to secure someone’s release. This was the exact opposite of that. This was Iran, at worst, securing the release of their own money by first releasing the Americans they’d been holding. At best, it is exactly as Obama and Kirby have described it, an unrelated (or indirectly related) settlement that naturally played out in concert with other diplomatic developments.
I don’t think anyone is trying to say that none of the various concerns surrounding diplomacy with Iran affected the others, but to the extent that it matters what we call things, it really matters whether we call this a “ransom,” because as President Obama has said, it would be disastrous public diplomacy for any foreign power to believe that the United States pays ransom for prisoners. That’s also why Donald Trump is so desperate to call this a “ransom.” ...