Thursday, January 30, 2014

January 30

"Individually, we are a little bit Neanderthal."

--Joshua M. Akey, a population geneticist from the University of Washington; cited in Geoffrey Mohan, "Neanderthal DNA lives on in modern humans, research shows: Some of the DNA acquired by human ancestors who mated with Neanderthals is found in some people today, including genes that control the development of skin and hair, studies find," Los Angeles Times; image from


Press Releases: Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board Elects New Vice Chair, Re-Elects Chairman for 2014 - “The J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board has re-elected Tom Healy for a third term as Chairman for 2014. The Board elected Betty Castor as Vice Chair, succeeding Susan Ness. President Obama appointed Healy and Castor to the Board in 2011. The U.S. Congress established the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board in 1961 to select participants, set policies, and publish an Annual Report for The Fulbright Program, the U.S. Government's flagship international exchange program, sponsored by the Department of State. Through Fulbright grants, more than 325,000 participants in over 180 countries have studied, taught, conducted research, and found solutions to shared international challenges. Tom Healy is a writer and poet. His books include ‘Animal Spirits,’ ‘What the Right Hand Knows,’ which was a finalist for the 2009 L.A. Times Book Prize, and two forthcoming books of essays: ‘Not Untrue and Not Unkind’ and ‘The Rest of the World: Smart Power and Public Diplomacy.’"

Navy band coming to West Monroe - "'America's Navy has only recently adopted the motto, 'Being There Matters,' but it's been a part of what we do for many years - through music - and therefore Navy bands are integral to our national security,' said Capt. Brian O. Walden, the Navy Band's commanding officer.

'Today, Navy bands are still performing around the world, acting as agents of public diplomacy for the American government, improving relations with our allies and winning the hearts and minds with the universal language of music.'" Uncaptioned image from entry. See also Walter Pincus, "Vast number of military bands may not be music to Gates's ears," Washington Post: "'There are about 6,000 FSOs,' or Foreign Service officers, he told an audience in San Francisco this month. He drew laughter when he added that former secretary of state 'Condi Rice used to say, 'We have more people in military bands than they have in the Foreign Service.' She was not far wrong.'"

Bayles Releases New Book On American Image, Pop Culture - Soo Jung Rhee, "A cultural critic in numerous publications and a faculty member of the Arts and Sciences Honors Program, Martha Bayles recently published her fourth book, Through a Screen Darkly: Popular Culture, Public Diplomacy, and America’s Image Abroad. In her book, Bayles expands her arguments about the decadent image of American pop culture and the lack of a general sense of constructive criticism against it. 'It’s about the way American popular culture is shaping the perceptions of people around the world and of life in the United States,' Bayles said. '[American popular culture] seems to have become the main influence in how people see America, and it’s good in some ways, but in other ways it’s not so good.' After travelling to 11 different countries and interviewing many experts in various fields, Bayles compiled what she learned from the process into a 340-page book in which she applied her critical lens to certain misleading images created by popular culture. 'Our pop culture flooded into the rest of the world at a time when the U.S. government was no longer really trying to communicate what’s good about the country,' she said. 'That takes you to looking at pop culture, and what does it say about America.' Although she began her writing career as a great admirer and defender of popular culture against cynical critics who would dismiss it as a mere commercial product, she started to develop her doubt about America’s reputation in the world following Sept. 11. 'I would defend what I thought was good stuff and that was my main purpose in writing about pop culture, to sort of defend it, particularly music,' she said. 'That was my starting point but then came 9/11, and it turned out that a lot of the world really doesn’t love America or naturally gravitate toward America.' While she expressed her grief over the overly optimistic and naive outlook on the cultural character of America in the world, she recognized certain aspects of it as worthwhile to be widely spread in the global popular culture market. 'I call that the American ethos, and I would describe that as a kind of hope for peoples’ ability to flourish and thrive under conditions of political liberty in a free society with democratic institutions, but combined with a kind of caution and prudence about human nature and the limits of how wonderful you can expect people to be,' she said. Using The Wolf of Wall Street as an example, she pointed out that American popular culture has become a distorted image of Americans, which exaggerates the faults in U.S. society and creates it simply as a source of entertainment and laughter. The problem, she states, is that many parts of the world may take a mere 'funhouse mirror image'

as the reality facing America and misunderstand the playful portrayal of social phenomena in America. 'I would like to see some awareness on the part of the entertainment industry of some of the messages they’re sending out there, and I would like to see more criticism of it,' she said. 'I think we need to offset those images with something that … gives them an accurate picture.' Bayles also argued that mending the U.S. image abroad could not be more appropriate in the current state of the world when savvy, authoritarian regimes still suffocate citizens with little or no political rights and nominal cultural freedom. 'I think the one thing that America should stand for in the current world is notions of people having political freedoms and rights there that the government cannot tap on,' Bayles said. 'And that’s just not true in a lot of countries. We talk about it, but then we project all these images that say ‘Well, you know, America’s really not that different from all these other countries,’ so it is extremely pertinent to today’s world. That’s why I wrote it.' Bayles image from

Helping ‘Till It Hurts [review of Aid Dependence In Cambodia: How Foreign Assistance Undermines Democracy By Sophal Ear New York: Columbia University Press, 2012] - John Wilcox, Small Wars Journal: "Using Cambodia as an example, both independent and national donors and program directors would be wise to heed the warnings in Aid Dependence in Cambodia. From a military perspective, the reliance on programs like the commander’s emergency relief program (CERP) to support military activity remains important. The danger is that poorly planned, but well-intentioned development and aid programs can lead to short-term tactical successes, but long-term strategic failures. Certainly, aid has a role in public diplomacy and international cooperation. However, aid must be applied judiciously, lest the lessons of Cambodia are lost in the well-intentioned effort by well-meaning donors to 'make a difference.'”

Politically incorrect film reviews – The long walk to freedom - Robert Henderson, "There are two films currently on release with a very high pc approbation quotient: 12 Years a Slave and Mandela: a long walk to freedom. The latter is a better film simply as a film, both because it had a male lead who imposed himself on the film and because it possesses something resembling a plot rather than a repetitive series of scenes of brutality and contempt. But being superior to 12 Years a Slave does not make it a good film let alone a great one and this Mandela biopic has serious flaws. ... [comment by:] Paul Marks (@paulvmarks) | 28 January, 2014 at 10:24 pm ...The book the film is based on, the 'Long Walk to Freedom' is not really Nelson Mandela’s autobiography (the actual work, written in prison, still exists – and one can compare 'Long Walk to Freedom' to it) it is an altered thing written by Rick Stengel (now Barack Obama’s, another man who has hidden his Communist past, undersecretary for public diplomacy)."

Ukraine gets short shrift from mismanaged Voice of America - Ted Lipien, Digital Journal: Mismanaged and underfunded Voice of America failed to highlight in English and most other languages Obama's State of the Union remark on Ukraine. Its oversight board needs to reform the taxpayer-funded media outlet and get more money from Congress. ... Failure to point out Obama's Ukraine remarks in the State of the Union speech was not an isolated incident. Due to insufficient funding, aggravated by mismanagement at senior executive level, Voice of America has been failing to report adequately on many important U.S. and international news for a long time. VOA journalists are just as helpless against the uncaring management as are outside observers who value U.S. international media outreach. The federal Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG), which has oversight responsibilities, must undertake immediate management reforms to solve this news reporting crisis."

Voice of America not reporting on U.S. Congressman’s threat to journalist – BBC, Russia’s RT, Iran’s Press TV are -

Last call for the Australia Network? - Alex Oliver, "And now the news: the Australia Network (described in The Australian's story as the 'Asian broadcasting service') is ‘likely to be scrapped in the May budget’. ... It has been difficult for successive governments to embrace international broadcasting as a useful (and for Australia, almost its only) public diplomacy tool. International broadcasters such as the Australia Network can help win over foreign publics in ways that support the national interest.  As a tool of public diplomacy, international broadcasters can inform the public in other countries about a nation's values, political systems, people, lifestyles and businesses.

For Australia, public diplomacy helps ease the way for Australia to conduct its foreign affairs, and promotes Australia as a place to visit and invest in. Australia's public diplomacy budgets have been whittled dramatically over the last decade, to the point where the Australia Network is about the only serious exercise in public diplomacy that remains. ... To be effective, international broadcasters need to be independent. They shouldn't just 'play for the team'. As Nicholas Cull concluded in 2010, the BBC, 'through its telling of bad news – as well as good – throughout the Second World War effectively reversed the reputation for creativity with the truth that Britain had earned in the First World War'. Likewise, it was their ability to criticise the US which gained Radio Free Europe and Radio Liberty standing in the eyes of Soviet bloc listeners. It is a government's ability to allow criticism of itself which gives it credibility in the world. The converse is also true. Government control of the media nullifies its credibility. There are plenty of examples of this from nations which few admire for their freedoms." Uncaptioned image from entry

ABC may lose Australia Network: Growing signs that Abbott government will strip the ABC of international broadcasting as a concession to conservative critics - Katharine Murphy, The Guardian: Another signal has emerged that the Abbott government intends to strip the ABC of its international broadcasting service – the Australia Network – in a significant concession to Rupert Murdoch and to conservative commentators critical of public broadcasting. The foreign affairs minister, Julie Bishop, has been preparing the public ground since opposition for the ABC to lose its Australia Network regional broadcasting service, which it was awarded by the previous Labor government after a bitterly contested process.

In January Bishop criticised the quality of the programming on the Australia Network, and argued it was not serving Australia’s regional interests as 'a tool of public diplomacy'. The Australian newspaper reported on Thursday that the service was likely to be scrapped in the May budget as a savings measure. The commission of audit established by the government will also run the ruler over other ABC services." Image from entry, with caption: Julie Bishop argues the Australia Network is not serving Australia’s regional interests. See also.

EU not ready for compromise on political prisoners - "The Belarusian authorities should release the political prisoners for establishing a dialogue with the European Union. This statement was made in Minsk on January 29 by Rodolphe Richard, the head of the Political, Press and Information Section at the EU Delegation to Belarus. ... Aleh Shloma, the Head of the EU Desk of the European Cooperation Division at the Belarusian MFA, said about the

problem of political prisoners: 'We're aware of the issue.' ... Shloma also commented on the information on behind-the-scene talks between EU diplomats and the Belarusian authorities mentioned by Lukashenka on January 21 during a meeting with heads of the Belarusian media. 'This is a common practice in the world. Many things are not discussed in public. Belarus is not an exception. There are several levels of discussions. Look at other countries that have had huge problems with the global centers of power until recently, for example, Iran. Nevertheless, we see serious progress made not only due to public diplomacy,' Shloma said. There are 11 political prisoners in Belarus. European and American politicians have repeatedly called to release them immediately." Uncaptioned image from entry

Europe’s relations with Cuba should require improvement on human rights - Martin Palous,"[H]uman rights should remain at the heart of the relationship between the European Union and Cuba and constitute an essential element of a new treaty. And all 28 member states of the European Union must agree. Several among them were trapped for decades behind the Iron Curtain before 1989 and returned to Europe after the revolutions during that annus mirabilis. They went through post-communist transitions and will use their own experience in the upcoming Cuba discussions. Whatever happens in Brussels in a few days, the negotiations that are to start on a governmental level between the European Union and Cuba will take time — it can be a couple of years — and there will be a space for public diplomacy and the participation of Cuban civil society."

The Turkish Al-Jazeera? TRT - Omar Al-Ghazzi and Marwan M. Kraidy, “'Turks and Arabs,' intoned Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, one spring evening in April 2010, 'are like the fingers of a hand.

They are as close as the flesh and the nail of a finger… We belong to the same history, the same culture and above all the same civilization.'  Erdoğan was speaking in the launching ceremony of TRT-al-Turkiyya, Turkey’s Arabic-language satellite television channel . ... Clearly, TRT-al-Turkiyya’s raison d’être was to bolster Turkey’s 'zero problems with neighbors' policy with a mediated charm offensive towards the region’s 300 million Arabic speakers. However, the channel has been facing a daunting challenge: it has to compete not only with hundreds of Arab channels but also with the foreign-funded channels. The managing director of TRT-al-Turkiyya, Sefer Turan, an Egypt-educated Arabic speaker, acknowledged the challenge: 'There are 750 satellite channels in Arabic,' he said. 'We are going to be the 751st. ['] Reflecting his channel’s embroilment in larger geopolitical dynamics, he added: 'We want to show our country’s industry, politics, culture and art, and leave the decision to the audience.' Turan’s words reflect the style and tenor of Turkey’s public diplomacy: it promotes the country and its regional interests in a soft sell stylistically emblematic of Neo-Ottoman Cool." Image from entry, with caption: Erdoğan and Al-Turkiyya: From Turkey with all its love

Food for thought - Jessie Thompson, "Mary Jo A. Pham has done research into the concept of ‘gastrodiplomacy’ – the idea that food can facilitate communication in a geopolitical arena. Not only is gastrodiplomacy, as Paul Rockower suggests, ‘the act of winning hearts and minds through stomachs’, but it also allows a country to promote its national identity and encourage economic investment.

When Thailand decided to use Thai restaurants around the world as informal meeting places for public diplomacy, they had a target of raising the number of Thai restaurants around the world from 5,000 to 8,000 – something they massively surpassed, there now being in the region of 20,000 Thai restaurants." Image from entry

Some Insight on the Valuation of a Non-Market Good (Wetlands) to Achieve the Social Optimum or “Greatest Good” - Jesse Backstrom, "Non-consumptive use values relate to the natural benefits that wetlands provide, and can be monetary or non-monetary. Existence values are those non-monetary and non-consumptive values that one has for simply knowing that a wetland is in existence, giving a satisfaction that a wetland is still in full health and aiding the organisms and other systems dependent on it. Bequest values, or the satisfaction one gets from preserving an ecosystem for future use, are also recognized as non-consumptive and non-monetary. Other non-consumptive and non-monetary values include landscape aesthetics, and the potential for education and research. This provides opportunities for developing knowledge on wetland functions and allows for more public diplomacy."

Diplomacy and Its Practice III - Luis Ritto, "In the past two articles of mine, I wrote about the evolution of diplomacy and how it developed from a bilateral instrument in the relations between nations to a multi-functional and multi-purpose tool of foreign relations of countries, as it is the case today. In fact, diplomacy nowadays does not only comprise the direct official relations between countries, as we come to know it for several centuries, but consists also of new forms of diplomatic actions, such as multilateral diplomacy, economic diplomacy, public diplomacy, cultural diplomacy, educational and science diplomacy and so forth."

Using Diplomacy as an Effective Tool of Economic Development - Joynal Abdin, "We can classify diplomacy based on the objective and nature of tasks like peace-making, peace keeping; trade negotiating, war, partnership in economic development, cultural exchange, environment, and human rights etc. issues. From other aspect we are observing aggressors/allies to boycott aggressors, soft power diplomacy based of relationship and respect, gun board/military power diplomacy, public diplomacy and nuclear diplomacy in practice. From all the above types and forms of diplomacy ... economic diplomacy ... can be used as a tool of economic development."

5 social media tips from diplomats - "Social media is emerging as an increasingly potent tool for public diplomacy, and the methods used by institutions such as the U.S. State Department should prove useful to any looking to build their international reach, Kara Hadge writes. Knowing what platforms work best for your target audience, having a measurement plan and having a strategy for moving from online discussion to offline action are critical, Hadge writes. Full story at SmartBlog on Social Media by SmartBrief."

Sept. 24: Mapping the International Sales Landscape in the Defense & Homeland Security Markets - "Vangala S. Ram Office Director Bureau of Political-Military Affairs/Office of Region Security and Arms Transfers U.S. Department of State [:]

Mr. Ram has served in the NEA, AF, EAP, EUR and SCA bureaus with previous postings in Amman, Seoul, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Cologne, Banjul, Herat, Tunis and Riyadh in addition to Washington DC. During his nine consecutive overseas tours Mr. Ram served as Vice-Consul, First Secretary in the Management and Public Diplomacy cones, besides his assignment as Senior Civilian Representative to Regional Command (RC) West in Afghanistan and Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) in The Gambia." Ram image from entry

Oh, Lorde! Grammy Hypocrisy Exposed - Helene Imperiale, Helene Imperiale is currently a second year student in the Master of Public Diplomacy Program at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California. Additionally, she is the Blog Manager at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy.

Public Communication Division Director, Tenured - "The Public Communication Division of the School of Communication at American University is seeking applicants for the position of Division Director. High-level professional experience in strategic communication is required, along with academic experience. A PhD in Communication or a related field is preferred but not required (a master’s degree is required). All candidates should be qualified for appointment with tenure at the rank of Associate or Full Professor at American University. The ideal candidate will have worked in an academic environment and will have high-level professional experience in at least one of the following types of organizations: communication agencies; corporations; nonprofit organizations; associations; or local, state, or federal government. ... The School: The School of Communication has four Divisions: Communication Studies, Journalism, Public Communication, and Film and Media Arts. ... The Public Communication faculty has a national reputation for work in the areas of political communication, public affairs, advocacy communication, social media, and public diplomacy."


In change of tone, Afghanistan's President Karzai welcomes Obama's State of the Union - Afghan President Hamid Karzai has welcomed President Barack Obama's State of the Union remarks on his country, striking a friendlier note after weeks of anti-American rhetoric. Relations between the two nations have been strained, with Karzai refusing to sign a security agreement which would allow some American troops to remain in Afghanistan after 2014. Obama said during his Tuesday speech that a small U.S. military force may remain in Afghanistan next year — but didn't say how many.
Karzai noted in a statement Wednesday that Obama had not set a timeline for signing any deal, calling that "positive." He urged an end to "negative propaganda" against Afghanistan and said he now believes the two countries can work together to help restart Afghanistan's peace process. Image from

Karzai Gambles with the Taliban: Karzai is sounding more like the Taliban in his public statements and recycling their propaganda in his criticisms of the U.S., but he’ll never make peace with the terrorist group - Bill Roggio, Daily Beast: Just when you thought Afghan President Hamid Karzai couldn’t distance himself further from the US and the West, which have propped him up for over a decade, he surprises you. The exact reasons for Karzai’s drift from the West remain murky but one thing is clear: his anti-U.S. rhetoric may sometimes echo the Taliban but it won’t put him in their good graces.

State Department deputy spokesperson Marie Harf responds to LWJ - Thomas Jocelyn and Bill Roggio, In her initial email, Ms. Harf accused us of "cherry pick[ing] quotes from one of my briefings to criticize me ...." We responded that we in fact used the reporter's questions, and her responses, in full. In a follow-up email, Ms. Harf outlined her criticism of our piece. Here is Ms. Harf's response: "You are correct, you pasted the whole quotes in the article - your analysis just completely misconstrued or entirely misread them. Comments highlighted below in response to your two accusations [LWJ note: Ms. Harf's comments are not highlighted but are included under the block quotes from her briefing. She begins by quoting herself from the press briefing. We included these quotes in our article.]:" MS. HARF: Okay. I'll take a look or a listen to that when I get back.
And look, this is not new rhetoric we've heard from Zawahiri. He's - core al-Qaida in Afghanistan and Pakistan, besides Zawahiri, has essentially the entire leadership been decimated by the U.S. counterterrorism efforts. He's the only one left. I think he spends, at this point, probably more time worrying about his own personal security than propaganda, but still is interested in putting out this kind of propaganda to remain relevant.

A Middle Eastern Primer - Roger Cohen, New York Times: Nobody controls the new Middle East. Foreign policy is a posh term for managing contradictions.

With Iran, Israel, Kerry is master of the interim deal - David Ignatius, Washington Post: For Secretary of State John F. Kerry, diplomacy has centered on what might be called the art of the interim deal. He has tackled two of the world’s toughest issues — the Iranian nuclear program and the Israeli-Palestinian problem — and has fashioned tentative formulas outlining the shape of a final accord, even though the parties are far from such comprehensive settlements. The success of this approach requires that the interim version becomes permanent — which is still a very long bet in both cases.

Israel Needs to Learn Some Manners - Avi Shlaim, New York Times: The simple truth is that Israel wouldn’t be able to survive for very long without American support. America poses as an honest broker, but everywhere it is perceived as Israel's lawyer. America gives Israel money, arms and advice. Israel takes the money, it takes the arms, and it rudely rejects the advice. America is going nowhere in the Middle East until it makes the provision of money and arms conditional on good manners and, more importantly, on Israeli respect for its advice.

A Press Corps Full of Snowdenistas: Utterly paranoid about their own governments, strangely trusting about the aims of the Kremlin - George Lucas, Wall Street Journal: "Most of my media colleagues seem to think Edward Snowden is a saint and proto-martyr.

Their Hollywood-style story line is that the fugitive National Security Agency contractor has bravely exposed American spy agencies' tricks and mischief.  ... But the media's sensationalist and misleading interpretation of the stolen documents has weakened security relationships among Western allies; it has corroded public trust; it has undermined the West's standing in the eyes of the rest of the world; and it has paralyzed our intelligence agencies. ... Anti-Americanism in Germany and other European countries is now ablaze." Uncaptioned image from entry

Why tech companies and the NSA diverge on Snowden - Peter Swire, Washington Post: The leader of a Silicon Valley company said, regarding the whistleblower-vs.-traitor debate, that more than 90 percent of his employees would call Snowden a whistleblower. Fundamentally, the traitor-or-whistleblower debate comes down to different views of what values should be paramount in governing the Internet we all use. The Internet is where surveillance happens to keep our nation safe. It is also where we engage in e-commerce and express ourselves in infinite ways. The goal is to create one communications structure that safeguards diverse, important values.

President Karzai’s Perfidies - Editorial, New York Times: President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan seems to have decided that there is nothing lost, and maybe something to be gained, in destroying his relationship with the United States. While such behavior may serve his interests, it does not serve his long-suffering country’s. The candidates running to succeed him owe voters a vision of how they will improve governance, reduce corruption and work more productively with the United States and its allies, who have spent billions of dollars to underwrite Afghanistan’s economy and will be asked to continue the aid, at reduced levels, in the years to come.

Falling short on Afghanistan - Editorial, Washington Post: The president is communicating the wrong message to Americans with speeches proclaiming “the end of America’s longest war.” If a continued U.S. mission is to be supported by the public and funded by Congress — which just slashed this year’s Afghanistan funding — Mr. Obama must make the case why it is in the national interest for troops to remain. That he does virtually the opposite makes him complicit with Mr. Karzai in undermining a major national security interest.

Sochi, the Circassian factor - Maria Elena Murdaca, Many Circassians are calling for a boycott of the Sochi Olympics, saying the Games will take place on the same grounds where their people was ethnically cleansed by Russian troops in the XIX century. Interview with Fatima Tlisova, journalist. It is not the first time that a country with a history of conflict with the indigenous population organises the Olympic Games. It happened in Vancouver, and before that in Sydney. Canada and Australia saw in this event the opportunity for national reconciliation. Russia did not. Fatima Tlisova, among the first Russian journalists to obtain political asylum in the West in the Putin era: [Q:] For Canada and Australia, recognising the extermination of indigenous peoples was not an insurmountable problem, while Russia seems to lack the will.

It is not just a matter of will. If we speak of the masses, they are victims of propaganda. A propaganda made of dangers, threats, and enemies. It may be that, at the subconscious level, knowing all that the peoples of the North Caucasus have suffered by the Russians, they expect nothing but hatred, and so we are perceived as a threat. There has to be a part of the historical memory, of genetic memory, which blocks the recognition process. But sooner or later it will happen. Image from entry

Hong Kong Media Becomes Propaganda Battlefield for Beijing - Li Lingpu and Lin Yi, Epoch Times: Those in Hong Kong who favor increasing democracy are worried that the city’s freedom

of the press is in jeopardy, as a faction in the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has increasingly been using Hong Kong’s media outlets to spread propaganda.

S. Korea holds live-fire drill despite North's warning - Kim Eun-jung, South Korea on Tuesday carried out a live-fire drill on its northwestern islands despite North Korea's warning of "grave consequences," but the closely-watched exercise ended without clashes with the communist state. South Korea has carried out live-fire exercises on the frontline islands every two or three months to improve Marine Corps' readiness. The drills have often been met by protest from Pyongyang. The routine drill was closely watched amid rising hope of thawed inter-Korean ties as the two Koreas are seeking to hold reunions for families separated by the 1950-53 Korean War in mid-February. Following Pyongyang's recent peace gestures, Seoul officials have been analyzing the intentions behind the unpredictable regime's recent move, while keeping close tabs on the North Korean military. The North Korean military has been carrying out its winter drills since early December, but it has temporarily stopped sending propaganda leaflets through the border since earlier this month, according to multiple sources.

BBC to broadcast anti-Gaddafi documentary as Green Resistance progresses - Linda Housman, The perfect time to pour in some more anti-Gaddafi propaganda and to start another round of outright lies! Thus, amid the ongoing struggle of the Green Resistance for true democracy as it were before NATO invaded the country, BBC Four's Storyville announces the documentary "Mad Dog: Gaddafi's Secret World", to be broadcast on February 3.

Top secret plan drawn up by Field Marshal Montgomery reveals how he wanted the Boy Scouts to help rehabilitate Germany from Nazism - A fascinating plan drawn up by Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery to rehabilitate the German people from Nazism has emerged nearly 70 years later. Montgomery came up with a strategy to win the hearts and minds of the German people after the Allies took control of Germany following the end of World War Two.

He said: "The church is possibly one of the few bridges of confidence between the two countries that is not down. Among the first things to be suppressed by Hitler were the church's youth work and the Boy Scouts. Every encouragement will be given to chaplains to start Boy Scout Troops, clubs and classes. We want to encourage juvenile organisations for the purpose of religious, cultural, health or recreational activities." Image from entry, with caption: Field Marshal Montgomery, centre, with Colonel I.P. Gorshkov, Soviet Military Attache in London, before leaving Bassingbourne Aerodrome for Moscow, drew up detailed plans for rebuilding German society

Russia's leading state television company fires ENTIRE department after its Facebook page lauds top Nazi Joseph Goebbels as a 'great' - Russia's leading state television company fired an entire department today after its facebook page lauded Nazi propaganda chief Joseph Goebbels as a 'great' figure alongside Winston Churchill."We apologise to our readers for the unethical publication," said VGTRK media group after a public outcry. The scandal erupted after Kremlin-controlled Vesti-24 news channel on Monday published a montage of quotes about Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin, to mark the 90th anniversary of the death of the Soviet Union's founder this month.

Goebbels, the Third Reich's fascist ideologue, was cited as praising Lenin for 'leading' the Russian people 'from suffering' - and to freedom. Other 'great men' on the list included British wartime leader Churchill as well as Mahatma Gandhi and Albert Einstein. Lenin's successor Josef Stalin was also included. The inclusion of Goebbels led to a furious backlash readers of the Facebook page which is followed by 1.1 million people. By Tuesday night, the Nazi had been dropped from the list, though Stalin - a figure revered by some older Russians - remained. Image from entry, with caption: Russian TV station Vesti 24 posted this picture of Nazi Propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels on its facebook page today on a list of 'great men'

The return of ‘Mein Kampf’: As e-book sales surge, we must not censor, but explain - Abraham H. Foxman, E-book sales of “Mein Kampf” have boomed, grabbing the top spot on Amazon’s propaganda and political psychology chart and entering the top 20 bestselling iTunes politics and events titles. Though the number of downloads may illicit initial shock — “Mein Kampf,”

after all, is full of the twisted thinking that would later form the basis of Nazi and National Socialist ideology and chock full of anti-Jewish themes — we should not conclude that it reflects a rise in anti-Semitism. That said, it is disturbing that so many people are downloading a book with such a sordid history. (Hitler, who notoriously used many forms of propaganda, never imagined the power of 21st-century technology.) Image from entry

Holocaust museum representatives train future teachers - The training will help pre-service teachers understand the workings of propaganda, the conditions that make genocide possible and the pedagogical strategies to promote conversation about these difficult topics in the classroom.

Image from entry, with caption: Associate professor Pam Bettis, right, explains some of the materials she received from the holocaust museum to graduate assistant Nicolas Manuel.

Obama’s State of the Union Goes PowerPoint - "What with our White House “Photo Access” Salon scheduled for February 9th, what has been on my mind these days is how much the White House communications product can be termed political propaganda and how much it’s genuinely informational and fostering constructive engagement. If nothing else, last night’s online State of the Union broadcast by the White House, combining slides and live video, opens the door to still one more way technology is modifying and expanding political communication. What you see below are The Bag’s live tweets with screen shots I took from the White House feed. Let me say up front that the tweets — with the exception of the guy in the cornfield and the Iran nuke threat — run to the cynical and the propagandistic. Still, I have to say there’s a lot to like about this new delivery. Above all, I admired the Administration’s effort when it came to information that can quickly make eyes glaze over that was suddenly enlivened." Among the images included in the entry: What with our White House 'Photo Access' Salon scheduled for February 9th, what has been on my mind these days is how much the White House communications product can be termed political propaganda and how much it’s genuinely informational and fostering constructive engagement. If nothing else, last night’s online State of the Union broadcast by the White House, combining slides and live video, opens the door to still one more way technology is modifying and expanding political communication. What you see below are The Bag’s live tweets with screen shots I took from the White House feed. Let me say up front that the tweets — with the exception of the guy in the cornfield and the Iran nuke threat — run to the cynical and the propagandistic. Still, I have to say there’s a lot to like about this new delivery. Above all, I admired the Administration’s effort when it came to information that can quickly make eyes glaze over that was suddenly enlivened.

Caption: WH feed patronizes “son of a bar keep” with this family photo. #sotu #teamrhetoric
9:35 PM - 28 Jan 2014

Caption: Remember the troops … when you can pull the heart strings that hard #SOTU #teamrhetoric

American Painter Bernard Perlin Dies at 95 - Perlin's career as an artist stretches over a period of seven decades, which he spent exploring a multitude of subjects and places. Perlin started off working for the government, creating propaganda posters to help gain support for fighting in World War II. 

Eventually, he was sent overseas as an artist and reporter for Life and Fortune magazines. After witnessing the horrors of war firsthand, Perlin returned the the United States more socially aware, finding many similarities between war-torn cities and the abandoned lots and gritty lifestyle of his native country's cities. It was around this time Perlin began painting what 
Art News calls "romantic realist" works. His most well-known piece Orthodox Boys, pictured above, was first shown at Knoedler and Company—and now it sits inside Tate Gallery in London. Perlin painting image from entry


From the exhibit, The American West In Bronze, 1850-1925, Metropolitan Museum of Art Through April 13


--Sant' Eustachio. Fountain of the Books. Via YA on Facebook

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