Wednesday, August 31, 2011

August 30-31

"They want to send me abroad, as a Consul or a Minister. I said I didn't want any of the pie. God knows I am mean enough and lazy enough, now without being a foreign consul."

--Mark Twain, Letter to Jane Clemens, 2/6/1868; image from


Media in Conflict: The Evaluation Imperative. Webcast: This event will be webcast live beginning at 9:00am EDT on September 9, 2011 at Keynote address by Amb. David Ensor, Director of Voice of America and former Director of Communications and Public Diplomacy at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan


Congress Must Set High Bar for White House Strategic Communications Plan - Helle Dale, "The U.S. government is struggling to coordinate the volumes of information from the many agencies and departments that make up slices of the public diplomacy and strategic communications pie. Congress needs to use its oversight to evaluate the variety of agencies, set specific goals, and ensure that the vital work of public diplomacy moves forward. The key groups involved in strategic communications are primarily the State Department, the Department of Defense, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), but the intelligence agencies and others are included. Last year, to address this challenge, the Administration established the Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications (CSCC) within the State Department’s Bureau of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. This has been capably led by Richard LeBaron, former deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in London.

It functions as an interagency war room that attempts to coordinate messaging through participating departments, provide guidance to embassies, and put out brush fires as they arise. This kind of coordination has been sorely missing for most of a decade, and at the very least the CSCC was a step in the right direction. Unfortunately, the CSCC has been hindered by a lack of muscle. To increase the effectiveness of the CSCC, the Obama White House is producing an executive order to boost the Center’s work and has proposed giving it a budget of its own in the fiscal year 2012 State Department budget—to the tune of $6.2 million. Before the government sets out to spend more money, however, and before any potential reorganization takes place, Congress needs to ask how the CSCC is contributing to combating terrorism and its root cause, the radicalization of Muslim youth. Congress should also explore the CSCC’s relationship with the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) under the Director of National Intelligence. The two centers have a common purpose but only a tangential relationship. As the CSCC completes its first year, Congress also needs to explore what it has delivered and what future deliverables are going to be. Most importantly, CSCC needs to move beyond process to measurable outcomes that allow Congress to hold the Administration accountable." Image from

When a Good Thing Goes Bad: The J-1 Visa - Patricia L. Sharpe, Whirled View: "Some of Hershey’s overworked and underpaid workers have turned out to be eager young foreign students fed unsuspectingly into the American underworld of semi-enslaved, sub-contracted workers who keep the cost of living for cheapskate Americans unrealistically low. Unlike the tens of thousands of workers who find themselves trapped in an all too common bait and switch situation, however, these students weren’t afraid to go public. They got in touch with unions and non-profits. They took to the streets in protest. And their families back home, not abject have-nots, but people with accomplishments and aspirations in countries where America wants to look good, joined the protest. ... What an embarrassment! The students were supposed to experience the joys of American culture and perfect their English while they, like so many young Americans, held a summer job that would help defray their college expenses. How American can you get? So they’d been issued a variant of the classic J-1 educational visa. In fact, working a speed-up job on the night shift for peanuts (not even the joys of almonds)

they did experience American culture, but not the kind that features summer music festivals and tete-â-tetes at Starbucks. ... And so, in the Hershey case, the J-1 visa process was co-opted for private profit, but the State Department was largely oblivious. Or was it? I don’t know. I only know that the Hershey situation, once it developed, was managed badly." Image from

A Banda-Larga Public Diplomacy Success - John Matel, World-Wide-Matel: "Our Information Section did something really great ith social media. I find it almost unbelievable. It came, as many things do, at the intersection of preparation and changing conditions, with a little bit of luck. Let me explain. We launched our 9/11 commemoration campaign a couple days ago. Our theme is 'superacão' or resilience and overcoming difficulties. My colleagues prepared a poster show. We did some media interviews & generally reached out to Brazilian media and people. There is no shortage of attention to 9/11 in Brazil. We don’t have to create a demand. But we do prefer that the narrative be one of superacão and resilience rather than destruction. We want to remember and honor the victims, but emphasize the resilience of America. ... Our theme of superacão was popular with our audiences. They were invited to write their own feelings about 9/11 and/or their own stories of superacão. And they did. Our Facebook page has almost 10,000 new members and we have gained another 38,000+ on our Orkut platform. Orkut is popular with non-elite audiences in Brazil. A video of Ambassador Thomas Shannon talking about 9/11 has garnered 9,260 views as of this morning, but I figure more than 8000 by the time you read this. Today we were getting almost 1000 new comments every hour. I say comments, not visitors and not 'hits'. A commenter has to take the time to write something. ... We will follow up with social media and with boots on the ground. I remain a little skeptical of social media

that doesn’t yield physically tangible results. One of our initial ideas is to take representative groups from various cities and invite them to programs or representational events when we visit their home towns. This will create a good media opportunity both in MSM and new media, especially in those places were we rarely tread. It makes it more concrete and exciting for the participants and fits in well with our plant to reach out to the 'other Brazil', i.e. those places not Rio, São Paulo or Brasilia. ... Up top I mentioned the intersection of preparation, good luck and changing conditions. Preparation is what my colleagues did and have been doing. They built a social media system ready to be used. It needed an opportunity. They also prepared for what they knew would be a big anniversary. But this program would have gone nowhere had not Brazil expanded its internet network, so that people could respond. I don’t think this success could have happened last year or even six months ago. One of the Portuguese terms I learned was 'banda larga'. It means broadband. Many Brazilians were learning the term and its meaning the same time I was. Now they have the capacity to log in and they are doing it." Image from

Teaching 9/11 | Why? How? - Holly Epstein Ojalvo, New York Times: [Comment by David Potter:] "After 9/11, the White House and US Department of Education asked our educational network, iEARN to lead a consortium of organizations to assist US educators and students in linking with peers in countries with significant Muslim populations. This effort, called Friendship Through Education, was complemented by three new US Department of State supported exchange programs for high school youth: Youth Exchange and Study (YES), National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y), and Global Connections and Exchange, which Undersecretary of State Judith McHale called a 'landmark public diplomacy initiative.' Inevitably, every exchange student engages in 9/11 discussions. Through these programs, discussions take place in an environment of trust and respect, both formally in the classroom, and, more often, informally around a host family kitchen table or over a cafeteria lunch. YES students in US schools for a year are tremendous resources, as are the US students traveling for a year to Egypt, Morocco, and Jordan to learn Arabic. Unfortunately, only a few thousand exchange students travel abroad each year, so most US students do not have a student from a predominantly Muslim country sitting next to them in their classroom. To address this, the Departments of State and Education are supporting a new 'Exchange 2.0' effort, which features organizations such as Soliya and Global Nomads, Twitter groups such as #kinderchat, and thousands of US schools such as Passaic Valley High School and Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School. The partners are developing virtual connections that are scalable, cost-efficient, and inclusive of traditionally underserved participants. Through these connections US students and teachers are engaged daily in direct dialogue and meaningful projects with peers of all faiths worldwide. Working with the Tribute WTC Visitor Center, for example, iEARN has created a program for classes visiting the Center to turn the tragedy of that day into an effort build understanding through online project collaboration."

Iran Foreign Ministry modifies structure - Iran's Foreign Ministry has made a number of changes to its structure in order to further enhance the ministry's efficiency vis-à-vis regional and international developments. Speaking at a valediction and introduction ceremony of several Foreign Ministry officials, Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said that public diplomacy

has been a top priority for the Islamic Republic of Iran, and that the creation of Public and Media Diplomacy Center in the ministry aims to accomplish such an objective." Image from article, with caption: A view of Iran's Foreign Ministry

Not even the best PD - Paul Rockower, Levantine: "Not even the best PD can't fix Israel's image without a change in policies."

Arab MK Aghast: IDF Trains Yesha Settlers for September - Gil Ronen, "The IDF has begun training Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria in advance of an expected Arab onslaught in September, ultra-leftist paper Haaretz reported Tuesday. Arabs are expected to try and march en masse on Jewish communities, hoping to overwhelm the Jews and provoke them into shooting at the Arabs. Video of Jewish settlers shooting into an Arab crowd

can then be used for propaganda purposes to portray Israel in a demonic light, in the classic cat-and-mouse-and-videocam manipulative tactic used by Arabs against Israel to great effect for many years. The mass marches are to be part of a Palestinian Authority public diplomacy campaign that will accompany a PA appeal to the United Nations for recognition as an independent state." Image from article, with caption: Arab mob

Chinese disarmament association pledges more efforts for international arms control - "The China Arms Control and Disarmament Association (CACDA) pledged on Tuesday to make greater efforts toward arms control and world peace. ... Founded on August 21, 2001, the nonprofit CACDA received the Special Consultative Status from the UN Economic and Social Council in 2005. It aims to facilitate better communication between the government and the civil society and between the business community and the Chinese public. The association also engages in international exchanges and public diplomacy by promoting mutual understanding between China and other countries."

Radio Prague to suffer no budget cuts in 2012 - "Seventy five years ago today, at 10 AM on August 31, 1936, the foreign service of Czechoslovak Radio went on air for the first time ever. Today, Radio Prague is an independent broadcaster although it is still funded entirely by the Czech Foreign Ministry. Following severe budget cuts in recent years, some good news came on Wednesday from the Foreign Ministry which promises no further cuts for 2012. Radio Prague spoke to

the head of the ministry’s public diplomacy department, Jan Bondy. ... [Bondy:]'As I said earlier today at a press conference about Radio Prague and its anniversary, we are satisfied with the work of Radio Prague. We would like to use the international service as a tool in promoting all the various activities of Czech embassies abroad, so maybe this is an opportunity for the future.'” Bondy image from article

Kyrgyz President Hosts American Councils' CEO to Discuss Innovation in Educational Reform and Development in Kyrgyzstan - "Dr. Dan E. Davidson, CEO of American Councils, recently returned from a trip to the Republic of Kyrgyzstan, where he and American Councils' country director, Cale Wagner, met with President Roza Otunbayeva

to discuss current needs and opportunities for educational development in Kyrgyzstan. Also participating in the meeting were senior representatives of the Ministries of Labor, and of Education and Science. ... About American Councils for International Education: ACTR/ACCELS Founded in 1974 as an association for area and language professionals, American Councils for International Education advances scholarly research and cross-border learning through the design and implementation of educational programs that are well grounded in key world languages, cultures and regions. American Councils contributes to the creation of new knowledge, broader professional perspectives, and personal and intellectual growth through international training, academic exchange, collaboration in educational development, and public diplomacy." Otunbayeva image from

Blogroll - Centrul de Studii Politice si Diplomatie/ Center for Political Science and Diplomacy [Romania]: "The Center for Diagnosis and Treatment LARA LIFE-MED The Center for Diagnosis and Treatment LARA LIFE-MED is the official partner for public diplomacy for 2011 at Institute of International Relations and Economic Cooperation [in Romania]."

2011年8月31日 星期三 Wikis, cyber attacks, insider exposes take headwind - "(Washington, San Francisco, AP · AFP · Reuters) recently uncovered a professional Web site WikiLeaks additional public diplomacy specialist with the criticism that you've exposed

the identity of anonymous sources, get to live a life of cyber-attacks as being driven predicament. WikiLeaks (AP) recently released a professional diplomatic 120,005 thousand.Wikis, cyber attacks, insider exposes take headwind." Image from

Don't shoot the messenger, league members told - Mail and Guardian on line: "Clayson Monyela ... [is] the deputy director-general for public diplomacy in the Department of International Relations and Cooperation, [South Africa]."

Roger Dow, CEO of the U.S. Travel Association … - John F. Infanger, "Dow, speaking at the annual International Aviation Forecast Summit hosted by The Boyd Group in Albuquerque Tuesday, adds that something ... the good folks in D.C. don’t seem to understand is that 'it’s also public diplomacy' when people visit the U.S. They tend to leave with a better impression of Americans, he points out, which has to be a positive in today’s volatile world. The reasons for the drop in foreign visitors, says Dow, are easy to identify: 1) this nation’s Visa policies; 2) the arduous exercise of getting through U.S. Customs; and 3) Washington fails to fund promotion of tourism to the U.S. to other countries. 'We’re sitting on the sidelines,' he says, while other countries spend billions to attract tourists. ... There may be hope, he says. Last year, Congress passed the Travel Promotion Act which is intended to fund promoting the U.S. globally as a tourist destination. A dedicated $14 charge on Visas will see $10 of that money go into the fund. An independent board will oversee how the money is spent. His concern is that other lobbying groups may ultimately influence Congress to redirect that money to other interests."

Meridian gastrodiplomacy - Paul Rockower, Levantine: "I was over yesterday at the exquisite Meridian International Center to talk PD shop with its director Ambassador Stuart Holliday. As I noted my gastrodiplomacy work, Ambassador Holliday mentioned an interesting gastrodiplomacy program that Meridian conducted. Meridian hosted chefs connected to a few various embassies in DC to come cook their local fare in programs open to the community. The chefs highlighted the national produce and ingredients and how it connects to the country, as well as how the cuisine connects to the culture.

The program went on for almost two years. He mentioned how the Chinese Embassy brought over five chefs to cook different regional cuisines. ... Maybe I can make Meridian the host of the first DC Gastrodiplomacy Conference...." Image from

Company News: Thomas W. Brown hired by Blue Water Capital Management - "Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications welcomes five new faculty members this fall:[among them Guy Golan] ... Golan teaches courses in public relations and public diplomacy. His research focuses on public diplomacy and media effects, as well as political and international communications. Golan earned his bachelor’s and doctoral degrees from the University of Florida and a master’s degree from New York University. Before entering academia, he worked as a political communication professional."

Dendreon Appoints John E. Osborn EVP & General Counsel - Earlier in his career, Mr. Osborn served with the U.S. Department of State during the George H.W. Bush administration, clerked for Judge Albert V. Bryan of the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and practiced corporate law with Hale and Dorr (now Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr).

He recently completed a term as a member of the bipartisan United States Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy." Osborn image from

The New Diplomacy: Devising a Relational Model of Public Diplomacy Anne E. Buckle - "Anne Buckle, a Baker Scholar, recent UT grad, and Harvard graduate student, recently defended her Honor’s Thesis. Her committee consisted of: Dr. Sébastien Dubreil, Research Advisor; Dr. Michael Fitzgerald, Defense Committee; and Dr. Christopher Craig, College Scholars Director.

The thesis is now available online via the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Trace: Tennessee Research and Creative Exchange Anne is pursuing a Master’s in Education at Harvard, where she will be studying how to advocate for the arts in the political sphere, and also how to use the arts in programs designed to help foster intercultural relationships in attempts to reduce global conflict." Buckle image from article

Last First Day - Linsey, "Today my last year of graduate school begins. ... People always ask me what courses I'm taking and since my schedule is usually determined by when I have childcare as opposed to personal interest, I can rarely remember the actual names and subject matter of my classes. But, not this year. This year, with the kids in school, I had a lot of freedom, well, more anyway, to pick and choose. And here is the result: Public Diplomacy -- if you know me well, you know that I can certainly benefit from any practical skills imparted in this course. The focus of the class is diplomatic relationships between countries and organizations, but I suspect it is really just about getting along in the sandbox, just on a much grander scale."


U.S. State Department Promoting an Anti-Israel Propaganda Agenda - The U.S. State Department is promoting an anti-Israel propaganda campaign. The extent of the campaign and the misinformation raises serious concern. The most recent misinformation surfaced last week when the U.S. issued a “warning” to all U.S. citizens the day of Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Courage” event on August 24 in Jerusalem.

Americans aid Gaddafi in rebel fight - Al Jazeera uncovers evidence that influential Americans tried to help the now deposed Libyan leader cling to power - Jamal Elshayyal, Found were what appeared to be the minutes of a meeting between senior Libyan officials – Abubakr Alzleitny and Mohammed Ahmed Ismail – and David Welch, the former assistant secretary of state who served under George W. Bush and the man who brokered the deal which restored diplomatic relations between the US and Libya in 2008. The documents record that, on August 2, 2011, David Welch met with Gaddafi's officials at the Four Seasons Hotel in Cairo, just a few blocks from the US embassy there. During that meeting Welch advised Gaddafi's team on how to win the propaganda war – suggesting several "confidence building measures", the documents said. The documents appear to indicate that an influential US political personality was advising Gaddafi on how to beat the US and NATO.

NATO Propaganda Leaflets Found in Tripoli - Marc Herman, The existence of the fliers,

urging soldiers to give up, suggest greater Western involvement in the Libyan conflict. Image from article

NATO's Genocidal Rape of Libya - Stephen Lendman, A committed team of independent journalists, researchers and cameramen produced the Global video accessed below through the following link: It's a snapshot of what Libyans endure daily under NATO terror bombings and rebel gang killings to destroy them, their futures and truth. International law prohibits naked aggression and propaganda promoting it. Article 21(1) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) says: "Any propaganda for war shall be prohibited by law." Propaganda and incitement to commit genocide is worst of all.

NATO's rhetoric on Libya ‘most cynical propaganda’
– Rogozin - Russia Today: The criticism of NATO voiced at an international conference in the Czech Republic is a sign of the growing discontent with the Alliance's policy both in Europe and in the US, stated Russia's NATO Ambassador Dmitry Rogozin. “Western intellectuals are strongly disappointed with the Alliance’s actions in Libya, as well as the policies of some specific member states,” Rogozin stated, adding that the rhetoric of some NATO representatives concerning Libya is “absolutely outrageous, going beyond the most cynical propaganda.”

Patrick Cockburn: Hatred of Gaddafi brought Libyans together. What can unify them now? One danger is that war propaganda, skilled on the rebel side, may have poisoned relations between Libyans to the point that it will be difficult for the victors to eschew vengeance.

For instance, the story of officially encouraged mass rape as a weapon of war was propagated by the rebel side and credulously taken up by the international media. Image from article

2 + 2 = North Korea is the best: In the Hermit Kingdom, even mathematics textbooks aren't free of politicized content - Emily Lodish,

Tight Budget? Look to the ‘Cloud’ - Vivek Kundra, New York Times: The “cloud computing” revolution is the shift from hardware and software that individuals, businesses and governments buy and then maintain themselves, to low-cost, maintenance-free services that are based on the Internet and run by private companies. Some agencies, like the General Services Administration, have embraced cloud computing; the agency has cut the I.T. costs on things as simple as its e-mail system by over 50 percent. But other agencies have balked. The State Department, for instance, has raised concerns about whether the cloud approach introduces security risks, since data is stored off site by private contractors.

The real reason Hollywood makes pro-military movies - Rebecca Causey, It’s not as if theaters are full of pro-military propaganda. Audiences have plenty of chances to wallow in the smell of napalm in the morning. The same year “Top Gun” was released, Oliver Stone released his excellent but critical Vietnam War opus “Platoon.” “Full Metal Jacket” and “Good Morning Vietnam” soon followed. High-ammo ’80s hits like the “Rambo” franchise and “Commando” do not exactly portray the U.S. military positively, for all their high body counts. Then, as now, for every pro-military “Battle Los Angeles,” there is a negative “Green Zone” or “In the Valley of Elah.” Despite a steady stream of movies calling into question America’s policies and methods, the masses stubbornly refuse to pay for the privilege of sitting through a two-hour anti-war screed. It seems there’s just no market for movies lecturing us on the bad behavior of U.S. troops and the wrongheadedness of U.S. policies.

Outside the lines: 9/11 coloring book causes controversy - John Vandiver, Stars and Stripes: Is it an attention-grabbing publicity stunt, or an effort to educate kids about the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the decade of fighting that followed? The publisher of a new children’s coloring book, called “We Shall Never Forget 9/11: The Kids’ Book of Freedom,” says it is the latter.

Really Big Coloring Books Inc. publisher Wayne Bell says the book is intended to be educational. The book, available only online, has stirred controversy since its release, being labeled everything from “disaster porn” to propaganda. The Council on American-Islamic Relations has said it promotes anti-Muslim stereotypes. Image from article

Manufacturing Opinion, Today's Mainstream Media - Timothy V. Gatto, The media in this country refuses to report the truth about what is really happening in the world and America's role in the international community.

Strangers and Demons in WW2 Japanese Race Propaganda - The Japanese propaganda of the war liked to present them as purer than Americans,

driven by greater ideals and united by stronger bonds, and also depicted the Japanese as liberators casting colonialism out of the Pacific. Image from article

Nazi Secretary Breaks Her Silence on Hitler's Propaganda Chief - She kept a promise of silence and secrecy for 66 years. A promise made to one of the vilest leaders of Nazi Germany. Now, Brunhilde Pomsel, 100 years old, is talking about her time as secretary to Joseph Goebbels, propaganda chief for Adolph Hitler, a man who railed against Jews and once wrote, “Adolf Hitler, I love you because you are both great and simple at the same time. What one calls a genius.” All these years later, his secretary calls him something else. “I will never forgive Goebbels for what he brought into this world,” Pomsel tells Bild, Germany’s most widely-read paper. “And the fact that he could murder his innocent children in this way.”

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