Wednesday, February 27, 2013

February 27

"We just finished one of those wonderful French lunches that have been drawing Americans to Paris for centuries."

--Secretary of State John Kerry, "Secretary's Remarks: Remarks With French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius," U.S. Department of State; FYI, your PDPBR compiler's ca. 5-minute interview on John Kerry on Huffington Live [10 minutes + into the segment]:  the end of the segment mentions John Kerry's high school, "preppy" St. Paul's School; more on St. Paul's, see. Image from


Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training (ADST): "The Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training (ADST) is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 1986. Located at the State Department’s George P. Shultz National Foreign Affairs Training Center in Arlington, Virginia, ADST advances understanding of American diplomacy and supports training of foreign affairs personnel through a variety of programs and activities. Over the past quarter century ADST has conducted more than 1800 oral histories, which are also posted on the Library of Congress website, with more to come.

Interviewees include such fascinating people as Prudence Bushnell, who describes her harrowing experiences during the bombing of U.S. Embassy Nairobi, Julia Child, Philip Habib, Dean Rusk, George Ball, Kathleen Turner, and many others. Excerpts from our oral history collections highlight the compelling, the horrifying, the thought-provoking, and the absurd. In other words, they reflect the reality of diplomacy, warts and all, making them a great resource for academics, international relations and history students, and for those who just like a great read." Image from site


How U.S. creates and employs war propaganda: Weapons of mass distraction -, "Abby Martin takes a look at MSNBC's recent documentary about the lies leading up the Iraq war, and the closer look at the corporate media's complicity in selling war to the American people by highlighting multiple staged events."

Film on Moroccan Jews Survives Zionist Propaganda Charges (Video) - Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu - "A Moroccan film on Jews who have abandoned the country for Israel has met fierce Islamist and left-wing protests but has survived charges that it is 'Zionist propaganda' designed to encourage “normalization” with Israel.

In the film “Tinghir-Jerusalem: Echoes from the Mellah,” director Kamal Hachkar talks with people in villages about their memories of some of the 300,000 Jews who once lived in Morocco. He also flew to Israel to speak with former Moroccans, recording their native accents that helped him win over suspicious natives when he showed the film back home, the Associated Press reported. “It tells the story of a forgotten part of Morocco’s history, a history that is not taught at school,” Hachkar told the news agency. 'My goal is to tell the human story and to defend the plurality of Moroccan history and identity.' Image from entry


America’s Russian-Speaking Immigrants and Refugees: Twentieth Century Migration and Memory - "The Harriman Institute is pleased to announce the receipt of a prestigious NEH Summer Institute grant for June 2013. Co-Directed by Harriman Research Scholar Edward Kasinec and the Columbia University Libraries’ Robert Davis, and with the leadership of Harriman Director Timothy M. Frye, the Institute will consider the substance of the terms 'diaspora,' 'transnational,' 'accommodation,' and 'memory' through the specific prism of the four distinct waves—First (1917-40), Second (1947-55), Third (1967-89), and Fourth (1989 to the present)— of Russian-speaking immigrants to America.

One of the core issues addressed is whether we can create a sophisticated narrative synthesis of the 'Russophone Experience' in America, that could be integrated into broader courses on American politics and immigration, sociology, anthropology, and ethnic studies. More than this, can this synthesis be applied to the experience of other immigrant groups? Institute applicants—current faculty members at U.S. institutions, independent scholars, museum curators, and up to three advanced graduate students—will compete for the twenty-five available Summer Scholar spots. Over a three-week period, this select group will engage in a lively dialogue with an extraordinary array of upwards of fifty master teachers, scholars, and social services and community representatives of the last three waves of emigration (and with the children of the first)." Image (of Columbia University) from entry


Establishment of a University Partnership with University of Karachi in Karachi, Pakistan in Public Policy and Public Administration - "The Public Affairs Section of the U. S. Embassy in Islamabad and the U. S. Consulate General in Karachi announces an open competition for a cooperative agreement to establish a University Partnership between a four-year college or university in the U. S. and the University of Karachi in Public Policy and Public Administration.

Accredited U. S. four-year colleges and universities meeting the provisions described in Internal Revenue Code section 26 USC 501(c)(3) may submit proposals to pursue institutional or departmental objectives in partnership with the University of Karachi. Objectives detailed as priorities for this partnership include: collaborative research, curriculum development, and faculty and student exchange. Faculty exchange programs of one semester and graduate student exchange programs of one month are preferred by the University of Karachi. The means of achieving these objectives is purposefully left broad to encourage the submission of innovative proposals tailored to the international education and research goals of both institutions. ... Estimated Funding: $1,000,000" Image from

Hillary Clinton's Unfinished Business at the Broadcasting Board of Governors - Robert Schadler, "Since her departure from Foggy Bottom on February 1, Hillary Clinton's tenure as secretary of state has received extensive attention—and accolades—from the press. Most assessments have focused on Ms. Clinton's diligence as America's top diplomat, as well as her extensive travel (a total of 956,733 miles in 401 days in visits to 112 countries). Yet one can't help but wonder if her tenure would have been far better had she exercised a bit more attention to a board [Broadcasting Board of Governors] she sat on—and which has been excoriated recently by Mrs. Clinton's own department as dysfunctional and badly damaging to key foreign policy interests of the United States. ... In her final testimony before Congress on January 23, Mrs. Clinton took responsibility for the attack in Benghazi, Libya, in which four Americans were killed. During the same hearing, however, she made a telling comment about the state of U.S. public diplomacy: [']Our Broadcasting Board of Governors is practically defunct in terms of its capacity to tell a message around the world. So we're abdicating the ideological arena and we need to get back into it. We have the best values. We have the best narrative.… and we're letting the Jihadist narrative fill a void. Via. Above image fromWe have to get in there and compete and we can do it successfully.['] Yet during her tenure as secretary of state, it was Mrs. Clinton herself who lacked the vision, and the perseverance, to correct this state of affairs. Let's hope that her successor at the State Department, former Massachusetts senator John Kerry, does better. Because, as the past decade of conflict in the Middle East has demonstrated convincingly, allowing the jihadist narrative to fill the void costs lives."

EU Newsbrief: Meet the New! - Delegation of the European Union to the United States, PRNewswire-USNewswire: " website of the Delegation of the European Union to the United States--has relaunched as the go-to destination for information about the European Union in the United States. The EU Delegation's new website offers visitors an enhanced user-friendly experience, including a new look and feel, expanded content, and the ability to share information across all major social networks. The complete redesign of is part of the Delegation's ongoing efforts to enhance the quality and availability of digital information about the European Union and the EU-US relationship. ' is the cornerstone of the Delegation's new overall digital strategy, which reflects our role representing the European Union in the U.S., as well as our commitment to being open and accessible to our visitors,' said Ambassador Joao Vale de Almeida, Head of the EU Delegation to the United States. 'Our public diplomacy team has worked hard to provide more in-depth, interactive content and a better user experience, and we are very excited to launch the website to serve our visitors better.'  Website features: Interactive Maps of the U.S. & EU Press Room Events Calendar Infographic Video and photo galleries"

The Molad Report on Israeli Public Diplomacy - Public Diplomacy, Networks and Influence: "Molad: The Centre for the Renewal of Israeli Democracy ... [is] a new think tank that accuses Israeli politicians of failing to address real political issues - I would read it as leaning to the left. ... The basic thrust of ... [its latest] report is to argue that Israel’s image problems are a function of its policies not its communication of those policies. ... Hence the basic logic is to demonstrate that contrary to what is often claimed Israel does have a functioning hasbara set up thus the image problem is down to the policy not the presentation. ... This is quite a useful report in that in pulls together a lot of recent developments in one place but it deal with activities rather than their local results or strategic outcomes. I suspect that a more detailed investigation would throw up the normal PD problems of poor coordination, unclear strategy and limited resources. However I also think that the basic conclusion that the problems are about policy are correct."

Worrisome findings on decision-making: Looking back at the era of PM Sharon, in theory, one could understand the logic of escalation and re-conquest of the PA areas if the Palestinian issue was a strictly military issue. But it isn't - it is first and foremost a demographic, diplomatic, cultural and moral issue - Ephraim Lavieand Matti Steinberg, "As the Danish philosopher Kierkegaard noted, life must be lived forwards, although it can only be understood backwards. This insight was confirmed by Raviv Drucker's program "Arik Sharon and the Second Intifada," which was aired earlier this month on Channel 10, and the unequivocal testimonies of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's closest advisers, among them Uri Shani. According to them, when Sharon was elected prime minister in 2001, he aimed to reoccupy the entire West Bank in order to eradicate terror. This overarching plan, they say, was known only to his closest circle of advisers ('the ranch team'). ... The fact is that Sharon did not define a strategic diplomatic objective for Israel and aimed to decide the conflict by military means alone. In the absence of a diplomatic alternative, therefore, the operational context was the sole factor determining and fashioning the reality in the field. ... Under these circumstances, absent a strategic policy and in the midst of a heated military conflict, efforts by then-Foreign Minister Shimon Peres to arrange another cease-fire were viewed as pathetic, as Shani innocently admits.

Intelligence assessments stating that then-Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat was interested in a cease-fire and in resuming the diplomatic process were also doomed to irrelevance. Rather than serve as a professional element that presents intelligence about the enemy as it understands it, Military Intelligence was harnessed to use public diplomacy band propaganda to ostensibly provide expert backing for Sharon's policies. Bblic diplomacy ut the process of escalation that could have, perhaps, provided legitimacy for the plan to seize control of the PA-controlled areas was racking up more and more casualties, thousands of dead and wounded, Jews and Palestinians alike. The human cost of the escalation skyrocketed, and whatever gains accrued in terms of 'legitimacy' came with the terrible loss of human life. In theory, one could understand the logic of escalation and re-conquest of the PA areas if the Palestinian issue was a strictly military issue. But it isn't - it is first and foremost a demographic, diplomatic, cultural and moral issue, in which military and diplomatic measures must be integrated and a balance found between them." Image from

Western empire and colonialism is over: Dr. Marandi [includes video] - "'Is there [a] difference between the Bush White House and the Obama White House right now when it comes to dealing with Iran? [Professor Mohammad] Marandi: 'Well, I do not think that in reality there will be any difference. I think that there are people in the White House that are beginning to recognize that these sanctions are not having the desired effect. In fact polls carried out recently by the United States, by Gallup, which is an American institute, have shown that the overwhelming majority of Iranians blame the United States and the Europeans for the sanctions and for the hurt and only ten percent blame the Iranian government. So this, I think, is a public diplomacy disaster for Western countries. And at the same time when Iranians see the Western countries taking barbaric, really barbaric measures to make ordinary Iranians suffer as a result of sanctions, then when their diplomats before the talks say that these sanctions are working, the sanctions which have created shortages of medicine; it makes them look, all them, uncivilized among Iranians and it will make Iranians more hard..., their approach would be simply to respond in kind.'"

China's public diplomacy "sound" realm [Google translation] - "Three realms of public diplomacy can moisten things silently 'Da Yin Xi Sheng' silence speaks to represent the ethical realm, the the religion realm and the realm of art. To achieve the triple realm beyond, prompting public diplomacy diplomatic transformation to the social, diplomatic transformation to the humane transition to the dialogue among civilizations, thus establishing the world countries, civilized countries, the global Chinese triple identity to enter the 2.0 era of public diplomacy."

India issues investor guide in Chinese - Sutirtho Patranobis, Hindustan Times: "Renewing its pitch for fresh investments, India on Wednesday launched a sector-wise investment guide specifically targeted towards Chinese companies at an investor forum in Beijing. 'The Complete Guide to Investing in India" is divided into 10 sectors where Chinese companies could potentially invest. The book, in Chinese, has information on crucial sectors like infrastructure, automobiles, hospitality, power and energy among others. Relevant rules and regulations applying to each sector have been given in the book. At present Chinese investment in India is worth around $55 billion but Indian diplomats here feel there is opportunity for much more.

The forum was jointly organised by the Indian Embassy here and the International Cooperation Department of National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the top economic management agency in China. It performs functions similar to the Planning Commission of India. ... A presentation jointly prepared by the Public Diplomacy Division of Ministry of External Affairs and the Embassy was screened at the forum. It carried interviews of senior executives of Chinese companies already present in India like Sany, ZTE, Huawei and Xinxing Steels." Image from

「국민 모두가 공공외교관 」프로젝트 공모 실시 대한민국정책포털 [No google translation available]: "1. 외교통상부는 우리 국민들이 민간 외교관으로서 직접 참여하는 공공외교(Public Diplomacy) 활동을 지원하기 위해 한국국제교류재단과 함께 「국민 모두가 공공외교관」프로젝트 공모를 3.1(금)-4.30(화)간 실시한다.

Economic diplomacy and foreign policy - Mohammad Jasim Uddin, "Among the instruments, image building, country branding, globalising Bangladesh's success stories (such as Grameen model of microcredit, social business, etc.), and institutionalising public diplomacy in the country's foreign policy are important to project a positive picture of Bangladesh abroad. Associating actively with global financial organisations is one of the key instruments of economic diplomacy and an important foreign policy objective. Bangladesh foreign policy has to be guided towards these directions."

We shouldn’t start with “red lines” - Vestnik Kavkaza: "These days the round-table discussion 'Russian-Georgian dialogue. Views of young experts' is being held in Moscow. It is part of a visit by a delegation of young Georgian political analysts in Russia, organized by the Gorchakov Fund for Public Diplomacy. Natalia Burlinova, Program Director Gorchakov Fund for Public Diplomacy: [']I am glad that our Georgian partners, colleagues and, I dare to hope, friends supported the idea of this dialogue, because the main objective of this project is to create a forum where young political scientists, experts, young politicians can discuss the complex issues of our relationship. The project includes meetings of our Georgian colleagues with various well-known people in the Russian Federation. Yesterday we had a meeting with the Deputy Foreign Minister, Grigory Karasin. We will have a meeting with reporters, we will have a meeting with political scientists. Now there is an incredible interest in Russia in the subject of Georgia. With the changing political situation in Georgia, of course, there was the activation of public organizations and community projects. The Gorchakov Fund is an organization that was established to promote public diplomacy in Russia, first of all for those interested in establishing a social dialogue. [']"

Did Globalization Kill Cultural Diplomacy? - Public Diplomacy, Networks and Influence: "There are still plenty of places where markets or domestic cultural policy is not going to build connections and that remains the sphere where cultural diplomacy and its intermediate agencies retain their roles."


What Americans Believe: Iran War Propaganda - John Glaser, A new Gallup poll found that 99% of Americans see Iran’s nuclear program as a threat to the US national security.

They believe Iran’s imaginary weapons program is more of a threat than North Korea’s actual nuclear weapons. Image from article

Zero Dark Thirty Wins Oscar For Best Propaganda Picture - Patrick_Henningsen, One of the most pervasive trends in 21st century western culture has become somewhat of an obsession in America. It’s called “Hollywood history”, where the corporate studio machines in Los Angeles spend hundreds of millions of dollars in order to craft and precisely tailor historical events to suit the prevailing political paradigm. ‘Hollywood history’ is very much in fashion these days. From Linclon to Dubya, and from Blackhawk Down to The Iron Lady, they constitute a significant portion of today’s major releases. There’s only one problem, however, with tailoring a story to fit neatly into a prevailing political paradigm… and over the last 100 years, the Germans and the Soviets did this too – with devastating effect, but back then we just called it propaganda.

‘Statist propaganda:’ Michelle Obama slammed for using military as ‘props’ during Oscars appearance - First lady Michelle Obama is under fire after she appeared as a long-distance award presenter on the Oscars Sunday evening, flanked by active-duty American service

members. he well-dressed members of the military stood attentively behind the first lady inside the White House as she presented the award for best picture to the movie “Argo.” But the use of those service members has left some of her critics fuming. Obama mage from entry

‘Hollywood Left Boosterism’ [includes video]: O’Reilly Takes On Michelle Obama’s Oscar ‘Propaganda’ - Bill O’Reilly played the clip of First Lady Michelle Obama‘s surprise Oscar appearance on his show Monday night and began to lay out his case for the “far left nuts that are monitoring this segment.” Why did this first lady get such a coveted spot in front of an estimated one billion people worldwide, when the same honor was never given to Nancy Reagan, Barbara Bush or Laura Bush? O’Reilly told his guest, Washington Post columnist Sally Quinn, that the move “smacked of Hollywood left boosterism” and a “pure propaganda play to make them glamorous.”

Brazil: the first big ‘soft’ power - Joe Leahy, Brazil has good relations with virtually every country in the world, from the US to North Korea. It has curbed, though not yet halted completely, the destruction of the Amazon. And it is preparing to host the World Cup next year and the Olympics two years later – a feat few countries have ever attempted. If the games are successful – which they probably will be, despite Brazil’s reputation for having a very relaxed attitude to planning – they will help seal the country’s image globally as one of the world’s emerging powers. Not a military power, bristling with missiles and troubled by messy border disputes like China or India, but the first big “soft” power, a kind of Canada writ large but with Carnival thrown in. via ACP III on Facebook

Vietnamese Propaganda Posters - Adam, Among them:


"The success of China's public diplomacy just as the spring rain, moisten things silently."

--Wang Yiwei Chahar, Senior Fellow of the Institute of the Renmin University of China, Professor of International Relations [Google translation]


Via DM on Facebook

No comments: