Tuesday, February 9, 2010

February 9

"I often quote myself. It adds spice to my conversation."

George Bernard Shaw; image from


Religious leadership key to success in dev: McHale - The Daily Star, Bangladesh: ‎ "Visiting US Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith A McHale

yesterday said religious leadership is key to success in every effort for socio-economic development. McHale said this while she was exchanging views with Anwar Hossain Molla, principal of Uttar Badda Islamia Kamil Madrasa at Gulshan in the city. Joe Mellott, Andrew Cedar and Corley Kenna -- three other members of the delegation -- were present. Director of The American Centre, Dhaka, Lauren Lovelace, Programme Development Adviser of the US Embassy Sabreea S Rahman and officials of the embassy accompanied the delegation." McHale image from

US keen to work with Bangladesh in making bridge with Muslim world - Financial Express Bangladesh: "Bangladesh and the United States of America (USA) have significant opportunities to work together to make a bridge between the Muslim world and the USA, said US Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs Judith McHale, as the Obama government is taking major steps to that end. She disclosed that there would be an entrepreneur summit in April this year in Washington, bringing young entrepreneurs from the Muslim world to create new access to business, while in March there would be a meeting of religious leaders in the US capital. Besides, the new US government is trying to expand its education programme and access to English education, science and technology for those who are interested to avail of the scope."

Analysis: Who Wants to Bomb Iran? - David Kenner, yalibnan.com: "John Bolton Perch: Senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute; former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Money quote: 'Those who oppose Iran acquiring nuclear weapons are left in the near term with only the option of targeted military force against its weapons facilities.

Significantly, the uprising in Iran also makes it more likely that an effective public diplomacy campaign could be waged in the country to explain to Iranians that such an attack is directed against the regime, not against the Iranian people…. Military action against Iran’s nuclear program and the ultimate goal of regime change can be worked together consistently.' –July 2, 2009, Washington Post." Image from

Bolton: Either Iran Gets Nukes Or ‘Israel Or Sombody Else Uses Military Force To Stop It’ - Ben Armbruster, Think Progress: "Bolton actually thinks attacking Iran 'would lead to greater stability in the region' but that if anything goes wrong, a simple 'campaign of public diplomacy' will sort everything out."

The Latest from Iran (8 February): Staying with the Real Story - Scott Lucas, Enduring America: "Jack says: 8 February 2010 at 23:10 ... It is not at all unthinkable to envision a scenario where one side or the other gets in such a fix politically that they feel they have no options available to them other than to play a little game of wag the dog. This could happen if the regime feels it has nothing left to lose and fires off a missile or two at a US warship. It could also happen if the US administration continues on the ropes domestically. ... all public statements are a form of public diplomacy and are therefore 'steps'.

There does exist such a thing as 'Iran’s nuclear confrontation' with the west." Image from

Iran arrests seven "connected with" Radio Farda - Kim Andrew Elliott reporting on International Broadcasting: "VOA's Persian News Network, via television, radio, and internet, is alive and well, and has a larger audience than that of Radio Farda. VOA's participation in Radio Farda ended in July 2008."

The al-Masri Dialogue – zenpundit.com: "Charles Cameron, in his latest guest post here, penned a beautiful essay regarding the ongoing exchanges between Australian counter-terrorism scholar Leah Farrall and Abu Walid al-Masri, an adviser to the Taliban and an experienced strategist of Islamist insurgency. ... While there is artifice present, as al-Masri is consciously speaking to a multiplicity of audiences in his remarks, the idea that we should therefore dismiss the dialogue with Farrall, as some suggest, is an error. There is also posturing in purely intra-Islamist-debates on which we eavesdrop and, frankly, within our own arguments inside government and out. We learn from what people do and do not do, from what they say and what is left unsaid. Being able to speak to multiple audiences is a constraint, as well as an advantage, as it shapes the parameters of the premises to be employed and the extent to which the underlying logic can be permissably extrapolated.

To quote a Zen saying, if you wish to fence in a bull, give him a large meadow. The constraints, if correctly discerned, are illuminating and are analytically useful in constructing our own tactical responses and message strategy (assuming someone can convince the State Department bureaucracy that IO and public diplomacy are important and persuade Congressional leaders to fund such activities with more than pocket change). They are also useful in helping to understand the worldview and governing paradigms of our opponents in more complex and nuanced manner than reflexively saying 'they hate our freedoms'." Image from

Ambassador Speaks about Cultural Relations on Radio - Embassy of tthe United States, Moscow, Russia: "Ambassador Beyrle spoke on Radio Orpheus on Friday, February 5 about the importance of culture and education in U.S.-Russian relations. Highlighting the work of the U.S.-Russia Presidential Bilateral Commission, the Ambassador noted how important this dialog was for deepening relations between the American and Russian people."

Oprah: Ambassador Of Middle East Peace? - Oliver Willis Blog: "The queen of all talk shows seems to be extending her power to middle eastern understanding. In a region where people overwhelmingly disapprove of American policy toward the Arab world, Oprah

has quietly emerged as a better cultural ambassador than any public diplomacy effort in recent memory. As the months passed, I heard more from fans of Oprah. They are women representing a spectrum of class and religious orientation — conservative women, veiled women, liberal women and even women who don’t speak much English but read the Arabic subtitles." Oprah image from

What's in a hand shake - Hassan A. Barari, Al-Arabiya: "I understand that public diplomacy can help iron out differences and can tone down tensions among opponents and rivals, but this is no replacement to peace making in the Middle East. I subscribe to a school of thought which believes that solving the Arab-Israeli conflict is key to solving other conflicts in the region."

On the creation of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund and a not-for-profit partnership called “The Russian Council on International Affairs” – Russia Today [scroll down link for item]: "On February 2, President Medvedev signed Executive Orders establishing a Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and a not-for-profit partnership – the Russian Council on International Affairs.

These are practical steps to implement a provision of the Foreign Policy Concept of the Russian Federation (approved by President Medvedev on July 12, 2008), namely to engage civil society institutions and the expert community in the foreign policy process. This effort is seen as a major reserve of our foreign policy work – fully in line with the demands of the times and with the practice of our leading international partners, as well as with the development imperatives of Russian society, including the tasks of national modernization. Both entities will presumably be financed by the budget and extra-budgetary sources, including sponsorship money. It is expected that their organizational development will be completed in the next three months. The Gorchakov Fund will operate under the overall supervision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as a grant-making organization – along the lines of such funds operating within the diplomatic offices of the leading countries in the world, especially Western ones. Its principal objective is facilitating the engagement of Russia's NGOs in international cooperation on a broad spectrum of issues, especially where civil society institutions play a significant role, including generating ideas that are then brought to fruition at the interstate level. The Council on Foreign Affairs is seen as a nongovernmental center for research and educational programs in the realm of foreign policy and international relations. Its creation is of particular importance given the current turning point in global development, which requires scientific thinking and applied analysis, particularly from the viewpoint of practical diplomacy." Gorchakov image from

Israeli Ambassador to visit LMU campus: Ambassador Michael Oren will share his perspective on U.S. and Israel relations - Adrien Jarvis, Los Angeles Loyolan: "Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael B. Oren will speak on campus tomorrow afternoon, making LMU the only Los Angeles area college he will visit on a current tour of the West Coast. At the event, called 'U.S./Israel Relations from Personal and Historical Perspectives,' Ambassador Oren will be joined by Jacob Dayan, Consul General of Israel in Los Angeles, and Shahar Azani, Consul for Culture, Media and Public Diplomacy."

IAESTE National Conference 2010 - Tori Horton - Exploring public diplomacy, new technology, education, NGOs, and communication. "This Friday I will be speaking at the IAESTE National Conference. The theme for this year is 'Your World Your Network: Your IAESTE' The purpose of the conference is to gather students and professionals interested in technology to examine skills and tools needed to become a global leader. My good friend and fellow public diplomacy cohort Mike Jackson is leading the conference. I plan to speak about my experiences in Second Life

over the last five years as I’ve planned and participated in countless events and gatherings with participation from around the world. Specifically, in an effort to keep to the conference theme, I’ll focus on building networks in virtual spaces and the unique ability of virtual worlds to facilitate global exchanges without incurring global travel costs. Second life image from

What should I research for my dissertation? - International Higher Education Consulting Blog™: A Source for News on International Educational Exchange & Mutual Understanding by David Comp: "After 3.5 years of night classes in downtown Chicago and then reading for and writing my comprehensive examinations (all while working full-time and having one then two and now three kids) I have been at the dissertation proposal stage for sometime now. However, I changed my topic a little over a year ago because I turned into a chapter entitled 'Qualitative Standards and Learning Outcomes for Study Abroad' for the upcoming book A History of Study Abroad: 1965 to Present to be published in March 2010 by Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad (I believe that everyone attending the upcoming Forum on Education Abroad conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA will get a copy of the book). If I was explaining my current idea for a dissertation topic in a Twitter post it would look something like this: 'Dissertation to be: Towards the Development of a Methodology to Measure Public Diplomacy Outcomes of International Education Programs'. I’m not trying to minimize a dissertation by talking about it in 140 characters. It’s just that this is all I have right now…an idea that is very interesting to me but now I need to figure out if this is a good idea for a dissertation topic and, if so, how I would even go about researching this."

Postwar Germany, U.S. subject of David M. Kennedy Center lecture Feb. 24 - BYU University Communications: "Louisiana Tech history professor Brian C. Etheridge will be speaking at Brigham Young University's David M. Kennedy Center for International Studies Wednesday, Feb. 24, at noon in 238 Herald R. Clark Building. His subject will be 'Nazis and Berliners: State Power, Public Diplomacy and Narratives of Germany in Postwar America.'

His lecture will also be archived online at." Image from

NATO Civilian Spokesperson//Media Advisor – International Jobs: "Job offer description: City: Kabul Country: AFGANISTAN Respons[i]bilities:The incumbent will work closely with the Public Diplomacy Division, in particular the Assistant Secretary General (ASG), the NATO Spokesman and the Head of the Press and Media Section, under the supervision of the SCR.Competencies: Demonstrate political-military sensitivity in managing strategic communications and media issues at the tactical, operational and strategic levels." Below image from

Open Season for 55 EFM (EPAP) Jobs, Deadline Feb. 12 – Domani Spero, DiploPundit: "I’m a bit late on this but the Department has announced the 2010 Open Season of the Expanded Professional Associates Program (EPAP). These positions have been created for Appointment Eligible Family Members and only applies to positions in the same mission where the employee-spouse has been paneled. The Expanded Professional Associates Program includes the following categories of positions: Political, Economic, Public Diplomacy, Management, General Services, Human Resources, Financial Management, Office Management, Information Management, Physician, and Registered Nurse."


Will the US Meet Its Waterloo in Afghanistan and Iraq? - Jan Myrdal, Center for Research on Globalization: In their propaganda the US is in Afghanistan to help the Afghan people. That is the normal verbiage of colonialism and imperialism.

Debate: Should American soldiers be allowed to evangelize Iraqis? - Jesse Card, Helium:

In addition to making him a target while handing out scriptures in the market square, a proselytizing Soldier becomes a centerpiece for terrorist and Jihadist propaganda: locally it could mean the Soldier’s life, globally it can mean the loss of support from host nations and many other things. Image from

"Turkish Coalition" for Propaganda in US - History of Truth: Taking action against allegations of Armenian genocide, Turkish non-governmental organizations in United States gets mobilized for making propaganda of Turkey. Turkish Coalition of America (TCA) and Federation of Turkish American Associations (FTAA) initiated close marking for informing members of U.S. Congress on Turkey's thesis over 1915 events.

Propaganda, PR, Business, Edward Bernays, And Us - Phillip Rhoades, Marketing Conversation™: "I’ve been reading through Edward Bernays‘ 1928 book 'Propaganda' and I’ve really been enjoying it. Now, the word 'propaganda' has been given a bad reputation, but really it’s what PR, marketing, politics, and the world is all about. As old Edward says,

'The mechanism by which ideas are disseminated on a large scale is propaganda, in the broad sense of an organized effort to spread a particular belief or doctrine.' Of course when you’re trying to promote a person,. product, company, or brand you’re working in propaganda." Image from

Propaganda - The Fuzz, English @ St Alban's College: "As a class we have learnt a lot during the past few weeks in terms of propaganda and this linked in very well with the advertising section. So next time you are walking through a shopping centre and a complete stranger (who will obviously have read this blog) walks up to you and asks, 'Excuse me, do you know what propaganda is?' You now have the ability to give an educated answer, hopefully completely omitting the words 'Hitler' or 'Apartheid', therefore causing us to owe someone a hundred bucks."


Battle of the Deathburgers: Heart Attack Grill sues Heart Stoppers Sports Grill - Boing Boing:

The owner of the Heart Attack Grill in Arizona, which offers a "quadruple bypass burger," is suing the owner of the Heart Stoppers Sports Grill in Florida. Both businesses are "heart-attack/medical-themed," with "sexy nurse waitresses." Both serve obscenely large stacked hamburgers, and side dishes of similar nutritional content. At the Heart Attack Grill, there's a scale over in the corner, and if you weigh more than 350 pounds you eat for free. More: Phoenix New Times, WSJ law blog, WSJ Health blog. The food and the concept may be repulsive to many (ok screw it, by "many" I mean "me"), but what gets me the most is the Sad Sexy Nurse waitress, at far right in the 'shopped image above, photo courtesy of the Florida ABC affiliate TV station WPBF. Sexy nurse, why you so sad? Incidentally, WPBF-TV (=stands for "West Palm Beach Florida") is pretty rockin'. As I publish this blog post, their top headline is "Elderly Man Accidentally Shoots Self Outside Gun Store: 80-Year-Old Airlifted To Hospital."


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