Wednesday, August 11, 2010

August 11

"You invest enough in a myth, and you begin to believe it is true."

--Sergio Ramirez, the renowned writer and a member of the Sandinista government who served as vice president during Ortega's first term as president, from 1985 to 1990, regarding the "Nicaraguan president building a national homage to himself," according to the LA Times; image from article, with caption: A man walks past a mural of Nicaragua President Daniel Ortega in Managua, Nicaragua.


Promoting Public and Private Reinvestment in Cultural Exchange-Based Diplomacy by Margaret C. Ayers, Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, Series on International Cultural Engagement


Broadcasting Board of Governors issues first-ever public summary of its meeting – Kim Andrew Elliott reporting on International Broadcasting

Ground Zero Mosque: The Curse of Liberalism - Family Security Matters: "[T]he issue of the locating of the Ground Zero Mosque is a political action and should be viewed as such. The news [is] that Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, head of the Cordoba Initiative (which plans to erect the Ground Zero Mosque on the site of the old Burlington Coat Factory) is being FUNDED by the administration . ... Ileana Ros-Lehtinen on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Peter King of the House Homeland Security Committee have condemned the State Department for funding Rauf. In a statement they claimed:

'Abdul Rauf has cast blame for 9/11 on the US, and even refuses to call Hamas what it is - a foreign terrorist organization. This radical is a terrible choice to be one of the faces of our country overseas. The US should be using public diplomacy programs to combat extremism, not endorse it. The State Department's selection of Feisal Abdul Rauf to represent the American people through this program further calls into question the administration's policy and funding priorities.'” See also. Image from

Bollywood and US Public Diplomacy – John Brown, Notes and Essays: "In connection with the assumption that American popular culture is historically bound to dominate the 21st century world (a view with which I take some exception: [see (1) (2)]), the article by a subtle, experienced Indian ambassador who served in Africa during the last years of the past millenium, has some relevance to American public/cultural diplomacy today, which has a tendency (true, not shared by everyone involved in that activity) to assume the inevitability

of everything culturally 'American' becoming global/universally accepted -- from the use of social media to watching/imitating American Idol. To me, such declarations about a putative 'inevitability' of the American way of life/culture worldwide is as naive, as parochial, a fatwa as the much publicized Western scholarly commentary provincially proclaimed about 'the end of history' as the Cold War was coming to a close." Image from

Iran's culture ministry publishes unsurprisingly unsympathetic book about Radio Farda – Kim Andrew Elliott reporting on International Broadcasting

Columnist is not free of confusion about Radio Free Iraq - Kim Andrew Elliott reporting on International Broadcasting

Outside View: What's in a name?‎ - Harlan Ullman,

"NATO needs a means of demonstrating its relevance to increasingly cynical populaces. Calling this outreach, public diplomacy or strategic communications makes little difference. Unless publics are increasingly engaged and informed, NATO's slow dissolution will continue." Image from

Insight: Indonesia's international image is at stake - Jakarta Post: "We often claim to be the largest moderate Muslim-majority country on earth on the path toward becoming the third-largest democracy in the world. Indonesia’s foreign policy over the last eight years or so has been, among others, geared toward projecting that image onto the international stage. Indeed, a foreign policy document on public diplomacy published by Indonesia’s Foreign Ministry states the government seeks to promote 'a new face of Indonesia,

which is moderate, democratic and progressive'. Indonesia’s public diplomacy under former foreign minister Hassan Wirajuda has achieved precisely that. Democracy and moderate Islam have become associated with post-Soeharto Indonesia. World leaders often praised Indonesia as an exemplary model where democracy, modernity and Islam go hand in hand. Some, including people within the Indonesian government, even began to urge the country to play a larger role to act as a bridge between the Muslim world and the West. ... However, it seems that the challenge of maintaining such achievements is far more difficult than the task of attaining them. Our democracy is far from perfect and continuously under attack by a host of problems. One of the most severe problems has been, and still is, our inability to reform justice and law enforcement institutions. ... If Indonesia cannot address and resolve the problem of corruption and religious intolerance at home, then it will certainly be left behind." Image from

Budget cutters target JET - Tomoko A. Hosaka The Japan Times: "Every year for the past two decades, legions of young Americans have descended on Japan to teach English. This government-sponsored charm offensive was launched to counter anti-Japan sentiment in the United States and has since grown into one of the country's most successful displays of soft power. But faced with stagnant growth and a massive public debt, lawmakers are aggressively looking for ways to rein in spending. One target is the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program, or JET. ... JET emerged as one high-profile solution to ease trade friction, teach foreigners about Japan and open the country to the world. Under the program, young people from English-speaking countries — mostly Americans — work in schools and communities to teach their language and foster cultural exchange. They receive an after-tax salary of about ¥3.6 million, round-trip airfare to Japan and help with living arrangements. ... James Gannon, executive director for the nonprofit Japan Center for International Exchange in New York, describes JET as a pillar of the U.S.-Japan relationship and the 'best public diplomacy program that any country has run' in recent decades."

Has Over A Thousand Year Historic - "Actually, China has the rich traditional culture resources, has the successful economy to rise the practice, has over a thousand year historic experience which has to do with the world, China definitely may in the international society express own viewpoint boldly, contributes for the human society is different with the Western society words spiritual wealth.Shen Xin (Chinese people foreign Friendship association US department head): New time public diplomacy starting from three historical opportunity.First, in 2009 President Hu Jintao’s in diplomatic agent conference speech stationed abroad, has provided the historical opportunity to the public diplomacy’s development, to strengthen with the improvement public diplomatic work has indicated the direction.Second, the reform and open policy 30 remaining years of life came the Chinese economy the rapidly expand and the comprehensive national strength promotion have also laid the good foundation for the Chinese public diplomacy, from the Chinese pattern and Beijing mutual recognition and so on initiation warm discussions, might see the Chinese soft strength the trend of escalation."

We need another army: IDF isn’t enough in face of global de-legitimization campaign faced by Israel - Eitan Haber, Ynetnews: "Israel must immediately establish a huge body – a sort of IDF in a different format.

We need an army without uniforms that would attempt to fight back against Islamic, global Jihad, against the ubiquitous de-legitimization process, against the indifference, and possibly also against the despair among us. In his interesting doctoral dissertation, Nachman Shai reviewed Israel’s public diplomacy failures in recent decades. At the conclusion of a fascinating analysis, he proposed that we rely on the 'molecules' – that is, hundreds of thousands of Jews and non-Jews worldwide who would assume the task of winning over their neighbor, their priest, the shopkeeper who emigrated from Pakistan, their mayor, and possibly even their prime minister. What we need today is an immense, well-resourced body that would aim to win the hearts of billions of human beings wherever they are, in a bid to turn the tide; a body that would aim to cover whole states and continents and use all available (non-military) tools and all means at our disposal (and while at it, possibly also wake up the Jewish people from its current stupor.)" Image: Huge Body Builder: Amazing

Remembering Jack Pandol - Jim Prevor's Perishable Pundit: "From the 1960s through the 1990s, Jack Pandol was a fixture in central California politics. Jack hosted, cooked for, or sold tickets to countless campaign events, and was on a first-name basis with a generation of politicians. He was appointed to a variety of state boards, committees and commissions by Governors Ronald Reagan, George Deukmejian and Pete Wilson as well as several federal appointments. Jack was well known as a globetrotter and spent as much as 4 months of the year abroad. Jack embraced what is today called Public Diplomacy. The items collected on the walls and shelves of his office were as much testament to his travel as the stamped passports and piles of foreign coins in his desk. Pictures of Jack with several foreign heads of state adorn the walls. It seemed Jack liked being out in the world more than being stateside."

Programme Coordinator - Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies – NAOMBAKAZI.COM:

"The role of the Programme Coordinator is the coordination of all aspects of the programme and the direct supervision of the technical teams in health, water & sanitation and operations management. ... [Required skills include] Excellent communications skills and public diplomacy.” Image from


Some want Al Jazeera and Russia Today off of Florida college television station – Kim Andrew Elliott discussing International Broadcasting

Canadian psyop in Afghanistan and its "counter-propaganda" mission - Kim Andrew Elliott discussing International Broadcasting

Blogger Busts Chinese Propaganda Photo – painting musical instruments - WebProNews Staff, It’s no wonder the Chinese government doesn’t really trust the Internet. It makes it a lot easier to call them out. Darn those democratic institutions! Chinese bloggers and forum members forced a photographer to admit he new nike shoes doctored a photo for the good of the State.

“I watch too much cable, I admit.”

--White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs; image from

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