Saturday, August 15, 2009

August 15

--Image from Boing Boing

“Retirees who have in their possession an HR/RET-issued retiree ID card may go directly to HST DSIS Office in Room B-237, to complete Form DS-1838, at which time they will be processed for and issued the new retiree ID card.

Retirees without an HR/RET-issued retiree ID badge must complete Form DS-1838 at the Office of Retirement (HR/RET), 2401 E Street NW, Room H-620, SA-1, Columbia Plaza, Washington, D.C. 20522. A retirement counselor in HR/RET must sign off on the form to certify your status as a retiree. Then, you will be able to be processed for and issued the new retiree ID card from the DSIS office in HST, Room B-237. Retirees must provide two forms of identification to the DSIS officer (Note: ID’s that are typically used are a valid (not expired) DOS Personal ID Card, a state driver’s license and/or U.S. Passport). The ID card will be issued with an expiration date of 5 years."

--From an announcement by The Bureau of Human Resources (HR) and the Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS) at the State Department; via LB by e-mail


Hitler Dead or Alive (1942)


USIA, BBG, State, square pegs, round holes, etc. - - Kim Andrew Elliott discussing International Broadcasting and Public Diplomacy: "Placing public diplomacy under [the] State [Department] is very much a round peg in a round hole, because public diplomacy must be lined up with foreign policy, and because public diplomats largely work through US embassies.

Using international broadcasting to send advocacy, when audiences really want reliable news, would be the square peg in the round hole." Image from

Public Diplomacy: InWorld Viewing of Obama Speech in Ghana - Alumni In NPSL: "The rich virtual networking environment offered by Second Life and similar virtual worlds (i.e. Metaplace) is a great benefit to many humanitarian nonprofits, including those engaged in public diplomacy. I had the honor of attending the inworld meeting on Diplomacy Island, with hundreds of other SL'ers, where we watched live streaming video of the Ghana speech given by President Barack Obama in July 2009."

WSJ editorial lauds RFA Burmese, ignores BBC and VOA Burmese - Kim Andrew Elliott discussing International Broadcasting and Public Diplomacy: "Of the foreign stations broadcasting in Burmese, BBC has the largest audience, followed by VOA, followed by RFA [Radio Free Asia]. All three vigorously report on Burmese domestic events. … Surveys of North Korean defectors, imperfect to be sure, indicate larger audiences for VOA than for RFA in North Korea. That is even more likely now, given that VOA, but not RFA, has a medium wave relay in South Korea."

Ending the Electronic Billboard Pain in the Ano - PR Strategy and Application's Blog:

"The US does have the United States Interest Section Havana, Cuba. It is a in a very large building as both 'looks' and 'acts' like a[n] embassy. On Jan. 16, 2006, the windows became an electronic billboard are started running messages for the Cuban people to see. Most were quotations about freedom from such historic figures as Martin Luther King Jr. (the first message to go up) and Abraham Lincoln. … In July of 2009, the US turned off the sign. The sign going dark was an example of the steps being made to improve relations between the US and Cuba. It should be noted that the sign had limitations because it was not programmed for the Spanish language lacking accents and tildes. A favor among the media and comedians like Jon Stewart was the not having a tilde turned 'año' meaning year into 'ano' meaning anus.

Whatever the flaws, electronic billboard public diplomacy was over." Images from and from

G-2 embassies in New Delhi - Madhurjya Kotoky, The Public Diplomacy Blog: "[W]hen I happened to visit the US embassy [in New Delhi], I could sense 'power' - in its sprawling campus, high walls, layers of security surrounding the embassy, cumbersome and tiring security checks conducted by paranoid and angry staff. There are barricades, check posts in the lanes and roads leading to the embassy, there is a ring of security by the paramilitary forces (most likely the CRPF) and an outer layer of security of Delhi Police both outside the embassy and then there are layers inside. You realize, this is a country that takes itself really seriously. It was inaccessible and unfriendly.

There was nothing 'diplomatic' about it and you could sense the 'empire.' … The Chinese seems to be doing something similar. Is it reflective of its growing power in the world now? I don’t know exactly when this fence and layers of security came up around the Chinese embassy." Image from

Giving a 'Diluted' Brand a New Face: Repositioning IsraelOp-Ed Review: "As part of evaluating the competitive landscape of the popularity of nations, in a process referred to in marketing circles as ‘place branding,’ Israel, to no one’s great surprise, has come up short in brand likeability, ranking last out of 36 nations included in an August 2006 survey. Simon Anholt, who conducted the study and is also the publisher of the journal Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, 'foresees a day when the most important part of foreign policy isn’t defense or trade but image—and when countries would protect and promote their images through coordinated branding departments.'”

Kadeer's Japan visit draws public ire – earthblog, To understand Chinese: "Japan's foreign ministry downplayed yesterday the impact of Rebiya Kadeer's visit to Japan … . According to a notice on the website of the Japan Policy Institute, Kadeer will skip a speech at a symposium originally scheduled for tomorrow in Tokyo and head back to the US for a closed-door meeting Friday on the Urumqi riots of July 5 that killed nearly 200 people. Liu Jiangyong, a professor of International Relations at the Institute of International Studies of Tsinghua University, argued that it is necessary to strengthen public diplomacy to enhance awareness of the truth of Urumqi's violent incident in Japanese society, which may find it hard to understand the complicated ethnic issue as a homogeneous society. 'Foreign diplomacy is an art. In addition to formal statements by the government, the media and non-governmental organizations should also play an important role in the campaign against separatist groups,' Liu said. 'Warning Japan with economic or political measures on this issue is neither wise nor effective.'” Kadeer image from

India-South Africa relationship highlighted at I-Day reception - Prokerala.Com: "Pretoria, Aug 15. The special relationship that India has with South Africa has been moulded by history, a shared vision, and participation in the struggle against oppression and injustice and the quest now for a better world, Indian High Commissioner Rajiv Bhatia said here Saturday. … Bhatia also lauded the staff of the three Indian missions in South Africa for their efforts in sustaining dialogue with Non-Resident Indians (NRIs) and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs) as an important dimension of India's public diplomacy in South Africa."

UA Journalism Faculty Recognized: Three faculty members figured promiently in the annual AEJMC [Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication] conference in Boston - Kate Harrison, UA [University of Arizona] News: "Associate Professor Shahira Fahmy was elected research chair for AEJMC's Visual Communication Division for 2009-10. Fahmy also presented a refereed paper at a panel of the International Communication and Public Relations division with E. Nisbet titled 'USA's Image Overseas: Contributing factors, Image Effects and Public Diplomacy Implications.'" Fahmy image from article

Insomnia – Kimberley, Suzhettes...tales of a wandering Mormon: “I've … decided to start a new blog with some of my thoughts on the gospel--from scripture study, as well as from a public diplomacy view you could say, by explaining what it means to me to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”


Marines try a woman's touch to reach Afghan hearts - Alfred de Montesquiou, AP: An all-female unit of 46 Marines is the military's latest innovation in its rivalry with the Taliban for the populace's loyalty.

Afghan women are viewed as good intelligence sources, and more open to the basics of the military's hearts-and-minds effort — hygiene, education and an end to the violence. "It's part of the effort to show we're sensitive to local culture," said Capt. Jennifer Gregoire, of East Strasburg, Pa. Via LB. Image from

Iraq war disinformation: propaganda to cover-up mass murder - Carl Herman,

Behind the Scenes: China’s Propaganda Posters – Kellie Schmitt, The Faster Times: One of the most interesting museums in China is hidden in the basement of a nondescript apartment building: The Propaganda Poster Art Centre. This three-room museum is the home of the largest collection of propaganda posters in China: more than 5,000 artworks that span 30 years of recent history.

An academic study of spin - cb3blog: Spin, in its communicative context, is a relatively new term for an ancient aspect of human interaction. The notion of presenting oneself, an idea or a product, in the best possible light, through Machiavellian methods, is as old as history, demonstrated in all from the mundane, as in inter-personal courtship, through to that affecting society as a whole, as in political propaganda.

Increased interdependence, pluralism and individualism, along with globalization have also changed the social environment, far removing it from the propaganda-rich world postulated by Orwell. The modern social environment is such that persuasion, spin and propaganda, or even more benign public relations practice, has limited capabilities. Image from

Tarantino: A superstar cinema nerd - Rick Groen - Globe and Mail: Movie director Quentin Tarantino: “America made propaganda movies during the war, and they're pretty darned entertaining. Most were done by foreign directors exiled to Hollywood, and what's interesting is how literate and funny these movies are, with the sparkling dialogue you find in the thirties and forties. Like Fritz Lang's Man Hunt, with Walter Pidgeon, or Hangmen Also Die! , also by Lang, with a script by Bertolt Brecht, about the killing of Heydrich. Or Renoir's This Land is Mine, his anti-Nazi film. Or there are really fun ones like Leonide Moguy's Action in Arabia and Paris After Dark. There's even a movie called Hitler: Dead or Alive, about a millionaire who puts a bounty on Hitler and three Chicago gangsters, led by Ward Bond, go to collect it.”

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