"What's happened is anti-Americanism isn't cool anymore."
--Top White House adviser David Axelrod, speaking to an audience of a few hundred at a conference in Washington sponsored by the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism. Image from
“I hate the word hasbara.”
--Michael Oren, a candidate to be Israel’s next ambassador to Washington; on hasbara, see
Money trouble keeping US out of Shanghai Expo – afp, Daily Times, Pakistan: "The United States is conspicuously absent as major countries start to build their national pavilions in Shanghai for the largest-ever World Expo next year. … The six-month event is expected to draw 70 million visitors — 95 percent of them Chinese — and despite the financial crisis, others are seizing the event as one of the greatest public diplomacy opportunities in decades. For the Americans, the biggest stumbling block has been a law prohibiting the US State Department from funding pavilions at world fairs. The US State Department has authorized a private group headed by Nick Winslow, a California amusement park executive, and Ellen Eliasoph, a Beijing-based US lawyer, to raise money to build the pavilion." Image from
State Department 100-Day Report - Press Release, ENEWSPF: "In the first 100 Days of the Obama Administration, Secretary Clinton and the State Department have made significant progress in advancing America’s national security goals and promoting America’s values around the world. Secretary Clinton is already the most traveled Secretary of State in a new Administration. ... The work undertaken on these trips, the many bilateral and trilateral meetings hosted by Secretary Clinton, and the tireless efforts of others throughout the State Department have contributed to early and significant progress on the following priorities: Afghanistan/Pakistan policy, the Middle East, Iraq, Asia, Russia, North Korea, the Western Hemisphere, the climate crisis, engaging in public diplomacy, and other core issues."
Obama's first 100 days - Arsalan Iftikhar, New Age Islam: "Thus far, Obama has done a remarkable job in his outreach to the greater Muslim world, where perceptions of the United States had suffered immensely from the garbled rhetoric and actions of the George W. Bush administration. Many American leaders are also following suit in the quest to help bridge the public diplomacy gap with the greater Muslim world. For example, a bipartisan leadership group of 34 American political and civic leaders – including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and former Republican Congressman Vin Weber – recently published a report, Changing Course: A New Direction for U.S. Relations with the Muslim World, which suggests concrete ways to improve US-Muslim relations in the future." Image from
Planet Holbrooke and envoy nation - Laura Rozen, Foreign Policy: "Richard Holbrooke, the special representative to Afghanistan and Pakistan, has had to reschedule planned appearances on U.S. policy toward Pakistan before the Senate and House Foreign Affairs committees that were slated to be held this week, and will now be held next. … And just who is on Holbrooke's staff anyhow? And whom do you call to find out? Again, it's not so straightforward. The State Department press shop says it's not sure. Holbrooke seems to be operating somewhat independently of the department apparatus altogether. But there are some clues. Among those sources have established are working for Holbrooke: … Foreign Service officer and rising star Jared Cohen, who recently traveled to Afghanistan to do strategic communications planning, and who previously worked for James Glassman in the State Department's public diplomacy shop." Glassman/Cohen image from
Lieutenant General Quatto? – The Quatto Zone: "The public diplomacy site MountainRunner carried a recent guest post by Mark Pfeifle, a Bush Administration Deputy National Security Advisor, and Jonathan Thompson, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs. Among their proposals for fixing government communication is to put a three-star general officer in charge of communication for each of the military services. … This isn't a radical idea. … It is only an unworkable idea, at least for the moment."
Guest Post: Let’s Get Susan Boyle to Sing the National Anthem - Sherry Mueller - Mountain Runner: "At a recent Washington, DC symposium on public diplomacy entitled 'Public Affairs in a Global Information Environment,' I joked to a Swedish colleague: 'Success in public diplomacy will be getting Susan Boyle to sing your national anthem. That is not as far-fetched as one might think. What are the lessons all of us involved in practicing or studying public diplomacy can learn from the Susan Boyle phenomenon?" Boyle image from
NATO information jeep tours Latvian schools - From 30 March to 13 May, NATO's Public Diplomacy Division is supporting a mobile information campaign – NATO/OTAN: "The 'NATO jeep' - for school children in Latvia. The project aims at raising awareness of the Alliance in the country, five years after it became a NATO member."
Outside-The-Box Ambassador? - Michele Chabin and Gary Rosenblatt, The Jewish Week: "In a hint at how he might approach dealing with diplomacy should he be named Israel’s next ambassador to Washington, as widely reported, Michael Oren said in New York on Monday that 'it would be preferable to excise the word ‘solution’ when dealing with Mideast tensions and talk rather 'about better managing the conflict and moving toward' answers. …
Global Health Fellows Program: Technical Advisor Needed in DR Congo - African Loft: “The DRC Global Fund Liaison (Liaison) will be the USG focal point on Global Fund activities, working under the direction of the USAID DRC Mission Director, who is the Second Vice-Chair of the Global Fund Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM). … The Liaison’s principal responsibilities include: … Working with the Public Affairs Officer/Public Diplomacy Office and technical staff to prepare and disseminate periodic internal and external updates/status reports on Global Fund in DRC."
My Understanding of Diplomacy - Jamie Dineen, The New Diplomacy: The Reflective Blogs of the Students on the New Diplomacy Module at London Metropolitan University:
"As the world has globalized and countries have needed to cooperate and converse on a level never before needed, diplomacy has moved from the shadows into the forefront of politics. … The final important aspect of New diplomacy in my opinion is the role the public play. Public diplomacy allows countries to talk directly with the inhabitants of other states, it allows people to hear things 'straight from the horses mouth'." Image from
18th Day of Easter, Wednesday April 29: Acts 10:24-48 - Bill Bruce, Heretics Like Us: "Peter brings a crowd of his people from Joppa, up the coast to where Cornelius has gathered a crowd of his family and friends. This is public diplomacy, not a private party as it might be in our culture. Who defers to whom, and what are the consequences? What’s at stake, for whom, in such a meeting? What’s it like for orthodox folks from other Christian denominations, or from other faith groups, to visit secular irreverent communities like ours? The words attributed to Peter about his own starting presumptions against associations with Gentiles set up the conflict and reconciliation between the Jerusalem church of the circumcised, and Antioch’s church of Gentile freedoms."
Of Loos and Language - Roger Cohen, New York Times: A U.S. president who speaks good English, far better than his predecessor, seems able to communicate with that world. This may even be Barack Obama’s biggest achievement in his first 100 days.
Obama Aims To Change World Perceptions Of U.S.
- Jackie Northam, NPR
Communicator in Chief Has a Tone for Every Situation - Alec MacGillis, Washington Post: Obama’s trip to Europe demanded its own nuance -- putting on a friendlier face to the world without overdoing it. "There's been times where America's shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive," he said in Strasbourg, France. "But in Europe, there is an anti-Americanism that is at once casual but can also be insidious. Instead of recognizing the good that America so often does in the world, there have been times that Europe chooses to blame America for much of what's bad."
Axelrod: Anti-Americanism now 'not cool' - Jon Ward, Washington Times: Top White House adviser David Axelrod on Monday said that President Obama's trips to Europe, Turkey and Latin America in the last three weeks have made anti-American sentiment uncool and "created a new receptivity" to U.S. interests.
"What's happened is anti-Americanism isn't cool anymore," Mr. Axelrod said, speaking to an audience of a few hundred at a conference in Washington sponsored by the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism. Image from
The First 100 Days: Grading President Obama - Ben Domenech, The New Ledger: Jennifer Rubin: “On foreign policy, excepting those areas outlined above, Obama is practicing a dangerous and unproductive brand of Jimmy Carterism, and in an unseemly fashion not seen even under Carter has attempted to bond with the world in their mutual anti-Americanism.”
When in Rome Fight Anti-Americanism -
Spike Spencer, Big Hollywood: We’ve all heard the old saying “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” Now that doesn’t mean crucifixions, world domination, and little boy rump humping. That simply means live as the locals do. Blend in. We as Americans are notorious for doing exactly the opposite. Image from
19% defectors want to go to US - Straits Times: Despite relentless anti-US propaganda in North Korea, nearly one-fifth of defectors aspire to move to the United States, a survey said on Wednesday.
ONE MORE QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
Q: Thank you, Mr. President.
During these first 100 days, what has surprised you the most about this office? Enchanted you the most from serving in this office? Humbled you the most? And troubled you the most?
OBAMA: Now let me write this down.
OBAMA: I’ve got …
Q: Surprised, troubled …
OBAMA: I’ve got — what was the first one?
OBAMA: Enchanted, nice.
Q: And humbled.
OBAMA: And what was the last one, humbled?
Q: Humbled. Thank you, sir.
From: President Obama’s news conference — full text