Friday, April 18, 2014

April 18 Public Diplomacy Review

"Psyplomacy model"

--According to Dr Nicholas Beecroft, a new policy (which he says he influenced) launched by the British Council which shifted "their model of public diplomacy from a marketing model to a relationships-based model grounded in a clear identity, values and authentic dialogue." Image from


The U.S. Is Being Routed by Russia in the Information War Over Ukraine - Kevin Rothrock, New Republic: "[T]he State Department has been trying to reach out to Russian speakers on the Internet for years, but the crisis in Ukraine has highlighted just how clumsy those efforts are. Earlier this month, Russia’s Foreign Ministry went so far as to lampoon the U.S. embassy to Russia, which tweeted—to the amusement of many—a misspelled hashtag that was supposed to say 'the isolation of Russia.' Russia’s diplomats warned the U.S. that it ought to learn how to spell a country’s name before spreading “spam” and offered their proofreading services to the State Department’s press office. Recently retired U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul can’t seem to let go either, which only fuels the Russian trope of weak and pathetic Americans in thrall to Russia. He remains active online, where he engages Internet trolls earnestly, and regularly reinvents the rules of Russian grammar and spelling.

The State Department does operate a Russian-language Twitter account called 'Progress for Ukraine,' where it posts snazzy-looking, correctly spelled infographics, but many of its posts only recycle links from other accounts run by the OSCE, NATO, and so on. Even when the U.S. remembers to check the calendar and proofread its messages, outreach to Russians has been underwhelming. The other day, for instance, the State Department was soliciting Twitter users for questions with a hashtag that translates to the less-than-sexy ‘the Hour of Truth.’ When Russians see this, it’s hard to expect them to believe that America understands them. Language like this is clearly intended to convey a sense of certitude and righteousness. On the Internet, and perhaps for Russians in general, this humorlessness and lack of irony is a death sentence. Until the Americans understand this, Russian jokes will win every time."

Department of State Public Diplomacy Schedule, April 17, 2014 - "UNDER SECRETARY FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY AND PUBLIC AFFAIRS RICHARD STENGEL 2:15 p.m. Under Secretary Stengel meets with U.S. Ambassador to Colombia Kevin Whitaker, at the Department of State." See also (2)

The Dangers of Soft Power: Government backed cultural programs often come across as just propaganda - Michael Shank, "Whether it’s a reality TV show on the Niger Delta sponsored by the State Department, theatre forums in Yemen’s fourth largest city, Hudaydah, sponsored by the Defense Department, or radio programs in Nairobi sponsored by USAID’s Office of Transition Initiatives, the U.S. government is getting increasingly creative about how

to use the cultural sector to do diplomacy, development and defense. Our government is not alone in this expansion of soft power, as governments throughout the European Union are sponsoring and spearheading similar initiatives throughout the Middle East and North Africa, for example. There is a danger, however, if not done right, and peacebuilders and conflict prevention practitioners on the ground rightly argue that governments shouldn’t be in the business of exporting Western arts and cultural models (e.g. former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice funding the export of a Sesame Street-type U.S.-based program in Indonesia, which brought Elmo to Islamic schools) or expropriating indigenous practices for a U.S. agenda. People on the ground in a given U.S. war zone – irrespective of whether they are 'for us or against us,' to quote former President George W. Bush – are understandably skeptical of U.S. intention, no matter how softly formed the policy. " Image from entry

The March of Public Diplomacy Needs to Get Louder - Tara Sonenshine, Public Diplomacy Council: "Whether you are a Russian speaking citizen in Odessa, or a non-Russian speaking citizen in Luhansk, you simply want to live in a free, peaceful and prosperous country. You want to know that you can afford gas and food and that your children will be safe. So what can the U.S. government say and do through public diplomacy to assuage fears and reduce tensions and to advance our own national security interests and values while promoting core global values? Here are a few messages: 1. The United States adheres to the principles of national sovereignty and respect for borders. 2. Governments duly elected to office have obligations to protect their own citizens. 3. The United States cares about the safety and well being of citizens. 4. Rule of law is paramount to the health and well being of societies. Governments that violate international human rights and rule of law shall be punished. Individual liberties and freedoms matter as do the rights of minorities in every country. 5. Diplomacy is far cheaper than war. Public diplomacy matters. As we see the use of force growing, we have to combat extremism and illegal behavior with consistent messaging. It is good to see the U.S. government using Twitter to push back hard in Russian on Russian propaganda (@UkrProgress) as well as launching Russian-language platforms on Facebook, Flickr, YouTube and LiveJournal."

Now, not Later! Capture the Lessons Learned! - Donald Bishop, Public Diplomacy Council: "[W]hat self-respecting profession shakes off more than a decade of war [in Iraq, in Afghanistan]

with no self-examination of the experience? ... When I speak of capturing 'lessons learned,' I am speaking institutionally about the 'civilian' side of the war – diplomacy; public diplomacy; the embassy, consulates, and PRTs; coordination with the military commands and representatives of other cabinet departments and agencies; resources, money, people, and so on. This includes organizational paradigms, institutional repertoires, career patterns and incentives too. All influenced the 'civ' responses to the wars, and we need to clarify them." Image from entry

Global Perceptions of U.S. Leadership Improve in 2013: "Gallup and Meridian International on April 10th released their fifth annual report on how U.S. leadership is perceived around the world at the Gallup Building in Washington, DC. The U.S. received the highest global approval ratings out of five global powers, including Germany, China, the European Union, and Russia. ... Governor James J. Blanchard, Chairman of Meridian Board of Trustees, delivered the introductory remarks. Jon Clifton, Managing Director of Gallup World Poll, presented survey data, explaining that polls were conducted in both major urban areas and less developed rural areas. ... ... The country representatives helped explain the findings. Nigeria, for example, like other African countries, showed a high approval rate (60 percent), but Ambassador Adefuye suggested that a 17 percent decline from the previous year was the result of Obama’s neglect of his country. Moldova registered 42 percent, a four percent increase from the previous year, which Ambassador Munteau said was due to rising public diplomacy among young people. Ambassador Glassman pointed out that the poll tends to reflect people’s impression of the U.S. as a whole, making it difficult to assess the participants’ evaluation of U.S. leadership alone. He suggested that approval ratings could be improved if the U.S. were to demonstrate more respect for other nations. 'There are three reasons why people often don’t like the U.S. around the world,' Glassman said, 'The first is they don’t understand our politics; second is they don’t understand our policies; and third is they feel the U.S. is not showing respect to them.' Holliday said that students in the U.S. should learn more about the rest of the world in order to support their country’s leadership role. The conclusion was that the U.S. faces more challenges in 2014 in enhancing perception of its leadership around the world. The mains challenges include its response to Russia, together with its NATO partners, as well as its ongoing attempts to rebalance power in the Asia-Pacific. Read the complete findings from the U.S.-Global Leadership Project here.'"

Blame the IBB, not the BBG Board, for making U.S. media outreach dysfunctional, says former VOA and IBB executive -  BBG Watcher, BBG Watch: "Journalist, writer and former Voice of America (VOA) and International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB) executive, Ted Lipien, sent us his comment to an op-ed by James Jay Carafano in The Washington Examiner: 'It’s time for Congress

to hit the ‘reset’ button on public diplomacy.' We do not disagree with the basic premise of Mr. Carafano’s commentary. The Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) is responsible for the dysfunctional state of U.S. international broadcasting/media outreach. Lipien also does not question Carafano’s basic thesis, but he makes a strong argument that the real culprit is not the institution of an oversight board per se, but the enormous and uncontrolled IBB bureaucracy." Carafano image from entry

ForMin Corlatean meets NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy - "Romanian Foreign Minister Titus Corlatean met on Tuesday with NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, who is on a two day visit to Romania on April 14 - 15, informs a release of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. According to the cited source, the talks tackled the public diplomacy dimension of the North Atlantic Alliance, with emphasis on the actions organized by Romania to mark the 10th anniversary of its NATO accession, AND the activity of NATO Contact Point Embassies in partner states.

The two officials also discussed aspects related to strengthening NATO's public diplomacy segment, in the context of the latest security developments in Ukraine. ... NATO Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic said she shared the views of the Romanian side regarding the importance of the public diplomacy dimension in the current security context determined by developments in Ukraine, and thanked Romania both for its ample participation in Allied missions and operations, and for its concrete contributions to public diplomacy programs." Uncaptioned image from entry

Venezuelan Protests: Latin America Is Watching - Pablo Scuticchio, Among analysts, the most common explanation for Latin American government and civil society interest in Venezuela revolves around Chávez, focusing specifically on his foreign policy and public diplomacy: generous resource transfers—both to incumbent governments and ideologically proximate

political movements; appeal to a shared continental sense of anti-Americanism; all delivered by a charismatic leader that supposedly struck a chord with the region’s strongman tradition. Image from entry, with caption: Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff receiving a Hugo Chávez picture from Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro

Gang of Three? Why Obama Must Bring Seoul and Tokyo Together - "When U.S. President Barack Obama touches down in Asia later this month for a long-overdue trip, he will have a daunting challenge ahead of him. ... The past year has seen little respite from the constant sniping and bitterness that has long characterized Japan-Korea relations. ... So far, of course, the feuding has not approached anything resembling Tokyo’s standoff with Beijing in the East China Sea.

Japan and Korea continue to manage their territorial dispute over the Liancourt Rocks, a group of islets claimed by both Seoul and Tokyo, using formal diplomatic channels. And the relationship has also not yet reached the point where both sides are on a complete public diplomacy offensive, as with China’s approach to discrediting the Abe government overseas. Image from entry, with caption: Barack Obama meets with Park Geun-hye and Shinzo Abe in The Hague, March 2014.

Shanghai 2010 World Expo at Street Level: The Local Dimensions of a Public Diplomacy Spectacle - Nicholas Dynon, "Internationally, the 2010 Shanghai World Expo was a major tourism and branding draw card for its host city. Domestically, the Expo constituted a major source of national pride and a key vehicle for the promotion of official messages reinforcing traditional state propaganda themes. Like the Beijing Olympics two years prior, the Shanghai World Expo was an opportunity for the state to cross-brand its messages with the fervor and prestige surrounding a world-class event. This essay’s seven photographs explore the domestic cross-branding of the World Expo with traditional propaganda messaging as it appeared in advertising posters/billboards throughout downtown Shanghai during the Expo. Although not all constitute direct political advertising, they all nevertheless perform a definite ideological role in reinforcing key propaganda themes. ... These photographs provide for a vivid insight into the domestic state public relations dimensions of what was otherwise a major international public diplomacy event." Among the photos: Juvenile art competition: “Go Expo!” (Shibo jiayou)

Innovation Diplomacy: World comes to Greater Boston to learn innovation from MIT - Fiona Murray and Phil Budden, "In one thread, innovation diplomacy is about innovation in (or for) diplomacy – namely the game-changing application of new technologies (such as FDR’s hotline to Churchill’s bunker during the Second World War) and techniques (such as public diplomacy through social media) to the long-established practice of formal diplomacy. This is an interesting area but usually the preserve of professional diplomats, their foreign services and diplomatic academies. Boston is home to two key centers in this area: Harvard’s Kennedy School, and Tufts’ Fletcher School."

The Daily: France’s Economic Diplomacy Shuffle -

Justine Saquilayan - trisight.og: "From the desert heat of Arizona, Justine Saquilayan comes to USC as a first-year candidate in the M.A. Strategic Public Relations program. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the University of Arizona, where she performed classical clarinet and acted as conductor of bands and orchestras in various K-12 settings.

She currently holds the position of PR Specialist within USC’s renowned Center on Public Diplomacy, where she is responsible for strategic planning, promotional material creation and social media management. Her professional interests include agency PR, corporate communications, speechwriting and the performing arts." Saquilayan image from entry


Selfie Diplomacy Solves all Problems in Pakistan - Peter Van Buren, We Meant Well: You’ll be forgiven if you did not know that your Department of State in Pakistan hosted Social Media Summit 2014. A bunch of bloggers gathered under the wings of the U.S. embassy to discuss “Social Media for Social Change.” Panel sessions focused on perennial, go-to U.S. feel good topics such as youth activism, peace promotion, women’s empowerment, and entrepreneurship. Fun fact: those same topics form the “broad themes” of U.S. reconstruction efforts now in Afghanistan, and were our major goals in Iraq

That’s your American ambassador pictured there, “getting down” with “hip” youngsters prior to their initiation ceremony as Taliban recruits.

US anti-Russian propaganda biased and misleading as never before">US anti-Russian propaganda biased and misleading as never before - As the post-coup regime in Ukraine sends troops and paramilitaries to crack down on ethnic Russian protesters in the east, the US news media continues to feed the American public a steady dose of anti-Russian propaganda, often wrapped in accusations of "Russian propaganda", writes Robert Parry, Consortium News founder and editor in chief.

The New York Times’ propaganda campaign against Russia over Ukraine - Alex Lantier, World Socialisgt Website: The denunciations of Russia published in yesterday’s New York Times, as the armed forces of the US and European-backed Kiev regime assaulted protesters in eastern Ukraine, are vile propaganda. The newspaper whitewashes the social and political character of the new Ukrainian government, installed in a fascist-led putsch in February, and blames on Moscow the violence that has been orchestrated in Washington and Berlin.

Ukraine: Kiev Fails Again, Propaganda Aims for WWIII - b, The anti-Russian onslaught in the "western" media continues.

AP Blasts “Russian Propaganda War” Over Ukraine - Gary Leupp, Perhaps the Russian narrative is too slick. The west is not behind everything, surely. But successive U.S. administrations have indeed seemed hell-bent upon provoking Russian response with relentless expansion of NATO. Is Moscow really supposed to accept Ukrainian entrance into EU, subject to an imposed austerity program, defaulting on its debts to Russia; and entrance into a hostile military pact likely to throw the Russian fleet out of its Crimean base dating to 1783? The U.S. State Department story is slick too. A mass-based democratic movement (with some U.S. help), overthrew a dictator, who’s supported by big bad Putin (who wants to reconstitute the Soviet Union, and thwart the desire of the Ukrainian people to join Europe). It’s just a matter of the sovereign right of a nation to make its own decisions. Russia’s violation of Ukrainian sovereignty requires condemnation of the “international community” and appropriate sanctions.

Propaganda and Russia’s Unconventional Political War - Deiniol Jones, Russians are still turning to the internet for their news. It is therefore important to avoid crude Russophobia, which, like economic sanctions, ‘produces the kind of atmosphere that dictators love.’

Another good, recent suggestion was that those who can should tweet in Russian, so that Russian speakers can continue to gain access to international media and opinion. It is a cliche that the first casualty of war is the truth. However, as someone said, Germany did invade Poland in 1939. Accurate reporting and awareness of propaganda techniques is vital. Image from entry

“Russia has not invaded Ukraine,” and other great moments in Russian propaganda [VIDEO] - Oh, you know, just a casual ‘Russia actually hasn’t invaded Ukraine, because that’s really just misinformation peddled by the fascists within the illegal government in Kiev,’ and whatever.

East Ukraine crisis and the 'fascist' matrix: Is the Russian leadership fomenting ideological links with some far-right European parties? - Halya Coynash, The Political Capital Institute suggests that there are ideological links between some far-right European parties and the current Russian leadership. Russia, it says, has under Vladimir Putin, set its sights on the restoration of the country's status as a world power.

Far-right and other parties seeking to undermine European unity and taking an anti-Western line are presumably to play a role in its fulfilment of Russia's imperialist aspirations. So, too, are the references to "fascists" used as an attempt to justify Ukraine's dismemberment. The world has been here before, and the price for collaborating with fascists and for failure to react to clear danger proved tragically high. Image from entry, with caption: Separatists have occupied administrative buildings in a number of regions in eastern Ukraine

Russian Media Accused Of Using Propaganda In Ukraine Reporting - KELLY MCEVERS, HOST: Throughout this crisis, the Russian media has been casting the new Ukrainian government as illegitimate, dominated by neo-Nazis and deeply hostile to the Russian-speaking minority.

Worldview: Putin plays long game - Trudy Rubin, The Kremlin campaign on Crimea and eastern Ukraine has taken propaganda to a new level.

Why the CIA Wants You to Be a Pacifist - Wes Freeman, Psychological Operations (PSYOP) or (as it has been known since 2010) Military Information Support Operations (MISO) are CIA operations geared towards conveying selected information and indicators to audiences to influence their emotions, motives, objective reasoning, and ultimately the behavior of governments, organizations, groups, and individuals – both inside and outside the United States.

“White propaganda” accurately identifies its source. “Grey propaganda” does not specifically identify its source. Rather than identifying the source, one might see: “It was reported yesterday that …” or “reliable sources report that…”or “eye-witnesses said they saw….” It attempts to appear authoritative and to avoid appearing as partisan propaganda. “Black propaganda” is propaganda information that purposefully misidentifies its source, usually the opponent, who is falsely credited for the information. Image from entry

Public Relations - Propaganda as an Economic Branch - Lukas Boehm, The borders between skillful PR, dull propaganda and lobbyism and corruption are generally flowing. The only possibility for protecting oneself against this is to be informed as extensively and independently as possible. This is easier said than done; information costs energy and time and assumes a basic education. Therefore it does not seem the manipulation of the majority by persons with “innate leadership qualities” or the “ability to give urgently needed impulses to society” will end.

Hollywood Smashes Hitler! Propaganda-tainment from WW2 - Fri. Apr 18 - 8PM - Oddball Films and guest curator Lynn Cursaro present: Hollywood Smashes Hitler! Propaganda-tainment from WW2 featuring a smattering of 16mm delights from the 1940s. During the big one, the Hollywood homefront pitched in big time! Silver screen stars served and those who didn’t signed on to support the war effort in their special way. Filmlanders shilled for war bonds in the glittering All Star Bond Rally (1945) featuring Bob Hope and Carmen Miranda. Frank Sinatra shines as a potent symbol of tolerance in the musical short The House I Live In (1945).

Director Fred “High Noon” Zinneman reminds us that refugees are people, too in The Greenie (1942). Kookie novelties such as In Current Events kept the message light with live action talking animals. Cartoons doled out info to both GIs in Pvt SNAFU Vs. Malaria Mike (1944) and the public at large with Meet John Doughboy (1941). The USO could count on manic Betty Hutton in The Stork Club (1945) and crafty comic strip pals Nancy and Sluggo Doin' Their Bit (1940s) to lend a hand. And MORE! Home-baked carrot cookies and other Victory treats while they last! Get those bandages rolled early and come on down! Image from entry, with caption: Drawn into the War... Effort


Image from, with comment: Max Sher, a Russian photographer, thinks of his deadpan photos of post-Soviet Russia as a kind of defiance against propagandized history. “Everyday life and everyday representation was almost impossible during Soviet rule,” Sher says. “Landscape photography could not even exist because it … looked not quite as optimistically as the government wanted it to look.”


--Via CC on Facebook

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