Saturday, September 13, 2014

September 13 Public Diplomacy Review

"Propaganda, of course, goes hand in hand with policy."

--From a letter by George Creel, Chairman of the Committee on Public Information (1917-1919) to President Woodrow Wilson, December 27, 1917; located in Box, 3 George Creel Collection, Library of Congress Manuscript Division; Creel image from


Digital Last at Voice of America with John Kerry –- Good Enough for Government Work - BBGWatcher, "This commentary describes how Voice of America was 'Digital Last' in its handing of an interview with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. The author of 'Digital Last at Voice of America with John Kerry – Good Enough for Government Work' is a former Voice of America correspondent who wants to remain anonymous. ... There may be more in the way of background to this that we don’t know, but think of it — if CNN, BBC, MSNBC, FOX interview Kerry, the president, or some other high official during a road trip, audiences would never see only a still photo unrelated to the interview, a late posted transcript and a SKYPE interview only with the correspondent. (There was no video, no photo, no Facebook post, no YouTube, no correspondent report in on-demand online radio newscasts about VOA interview with Kerry, no social media engagement of any significance compared to what BBC, CNN, or RT regularly get. Read our report. Editor’s note.)"

India and China must think outside the ‘bureaucratic box’ - Tansen Sen, "There are contradictions between the India–China joint declarations about promoting people-to-people exchanges and the implementation of these measures. Intra-ministerial disagreements, mystifying constraints, narrow visions and a reluctance to involve competent people often render these processes ineffective.

These initiatives are usually categorised as ‘public diplomacy’ and epitomised by heavy handedness and restrictions imposed by bureaucrats who treat them as no more than symbolic gestures. In fact, free interactions at the grassroots levels — that could potentially advance mutual awareness and knowledge — have never been fully encouraged seemingly for ‘security’ reasons. Consequently, the rhetoric and false narratives of friendship get recycled while the general public remain in the dark and utterly confused about the actual policy goals." Image from

Public Diplomacy and the Globalization of Terror - "For Nigeria, the West does not seem to be doing enough militarily and in terms of public diplomacy."

High-Tech Jihad: Stopping Zuckerber's 'Terrorism Network' -- Exclusive: Larry Klayman explains his lawsuit against Facebook for enabling ISIS et al. - "Due to the lack of liability attached to Internet entities, such as Facebook, for permitting and furthering terrorist conduct on their forums, terrorists groups are using the network to grow much stronger. As outlined in my lawsuit against Facebook and Zuckerberg,

I came across the 'Third Intifada Page' on Facebook. The page, which had over 300,000 followers, contained terrorist death threats and calls to carry out said death threats against all Jews. As a person of Jewish origin and pro-Israel activist with a highly public opposition to radical Islam, I feared an imminent attack to cause me severe bodily harm or even death. My fears were justified because I received death threats as a result of the page. Consequently, I, along with the public diplomacy minister of Israel, simply asked Facebook to take down the page. Facebook refused, and as a result, Jews actually DIED. The page remained on Facebook for a staggering two weeks!" Klayman image from entry


What Obama Didn't say - Philip Gourevitch, New Yorker: Until now, the pretext for our more limited air war against ISIS has been that we were protecting American personnel in Iraq. Obama said that he “insisted that additional U.S. action depended upon Iraqis forming an inclusive government.” That new government was put together “in recent days,” and so he said that he was ready for action. He did not discuss the heaviness of America’s hand in creating it. Are we really to believe that this untested client regime in Baghdad is the foundation for Obama’s drastic reversal of course? Or was it the beheadings of the American journalists by ISIS butchers who taunted Obama directly in their grisly propaganda snuff films?

Springtime for Russophobia: Putin the “New Hitler” and Anti-Russian Propaganda - Mark Hackard, In decadent madness

the Pax Americana seeks to subjugate Russia. Image from entry

N. Korea calls on Seoul to stop sending propaganda leaflets - North Korea on Saturday denounced South Korea's recent proposal to hold high-level talks, saying that Seoul should first stop all anti-Pyongyang hostile activities, including floating propaganda leaflets into its territory, before making such a "deceptive" offer.

Belgrade Theatre Welcomes Actor-Musician Cast for PROPAGANDA SWING, Running Now thru Sept 27 - The Belgrade Theatre in Coventry has announced casting for the UK premiere of Peter Arnott's gripping WWII drama Propaganda Swing, playing on the Belgrade Main Stage for two weeks this month. This brand new co-production with Nottingham Playhouse will feature a cast

of eight actor-musicians and follows in the success of the two theatres' previous co-production of Charlie Peace: His Amazing Life and Astounding Legend which premiered in Nottingham in September 2013. Directed by Belgrade Theatre Artistic Director Hamish Glen, Propaganda Swing is a captivating combination of WWII intrigue and drama set against a backdrop of glitz, glamour and Big Band swagger. Image from entry

High praise for the less-hyped at Toronto [includes video] - Janice Page, “Red Army”: Maybe it was just that I was in Canada, at a premiere where the audience included legendary player Wayne Gretzky and coach Scotty Bowman, but no TIFF screening was more fun than this documentary about the great Soviet hockey machine led by Vladimir Krutov, Igor Larionov, and Sergei Makarov (the KLM line), with Alexei Kasatonov and Viacheslav Fetisov on defense. Even when director Gabe Polsky overreaches to support his sports-as-propaganda narrative (Pucks for Perestroika!), there is wit and ESPN-quality playfulness to his filmmaking. Don Cherry shows up in a laughably menacing clip. If you don’t know who that is, this isn’t your movie.


Полицейская Лос-Анжелеса присматривает за брошенным ребенком, устроив его в своём столе. [1971] (loose translation: LA police officer looks after an abandoned child, accommodating the child in her desk; via DM on Facebook

QUOTATIONS FROM CHAIRMAN CREEL (from the Library of Congress Manuscript Division, George Creel Papers) Creel was the Chairman of the Committee on Public Information, 1917-1919, created by Woodrow Wilson by Executive Order on April 14, 1917; arguably it is the USG's first propaganda ("public diplomacy?") agency)

(image from)

"Once, too, he [Woodrow Wilson] looked up at me with a twinkle in his eye, and said, 'I'm afraid, dear boy, that I was born without your passion for adjectives."

--Creel letter to his son, George Bates Creel March 21, 1931, Box 1

"One of the most effective of all our propaganda agencies was THE OPPRESSED NATIONALITIES OF AUSTRO-HUNGARY with Tomas G. Masaryk and Ignace Padereski as its leaders."

"By wireless and able, we send 1,000 words a day to the countries of the world."

--Creel letter to Wilson, July 23, 1918, Box 2

"For four months I have been trying to get some effective posters from the artists of America and I have not yet seen a single one that appeals to me as the real thing."

--Creel to Wilson, June 20, 1917, Box 1

(image from)

"The CPI's maintenance of its own set-up in both neutral and Allied nations was another reason for the State Department's persistent antagonism. Ambassadors and ministers thrust to one side as entirely useless for our work, nagged and blocked."

--Creel undated note appended to a his July 31, 1918 letter to Wilson, Box 3

"The volunteer censorship is being observed with few violations. Our matter goes into the papers by thousands of columns, and aside from the personal attacks of a few New York newspapers, like the World, feeling has grown very friendly."

--Creel Woodrow Wilson, November 18, 1917, Box 3

"Mr. [Hugh] Gibsons's idea

 (Gibson image from)

of a 'first class man' to organize and coordinate the work of disseminating timely information in Europe, is a man who speaks French, acts French, and is as little as an American as is possible." On Gibson, see.

"I have dismissed myself from the payroll today, March first."

--Creel to Wilson, March 1 1919, Box 2

"[T]he Republican majority in Congress destroyed the Committee on Public Information on June 30, 1919 ... the Committee was dispossessed on July 20, and the ledgers and files of two years were loaded into amy trucks and dumped in vacant offices in the old Fuel Administration building. It was not until August 21 that you [Wilson] found power to appoint the Council of National Defense as the Committee's liquidating agency and for a second time, records, receipts, bills and checks were piled into trucks and carted to a new resting place."

--Creel to Wilson, March 1, 1919, Box 2


"In the estimate you submitted the other day for the Committee on Public Information, I found no provision, at any rate no definite provision, for yourself. I cannot be content with that arrangement and write to you to beg that you will do me the favor to provide a proper compensation for your own services. I could not be content with anything else."

--Wilson to Creel, May 14, 1917, Box 3

"I am no expert in publicity."

(image from, with caption Publicity Calendar for the Cigarette Paper Manufacturer 'Rizla', Depicting President Woodrow Wilson)

--Wilson to Creel, July 21, 1918, Box 2

"I believe that proper cooperation of the newspapers to be impossible because of the small but powerful lawless elements among them who observe no rules, regard no understanding as binding, and act always as they please."

--Wilson to State Department Third Assistant Secretary of State Breckinridge Long,  November 20, 1917, Box 3


1940 -- Traveled to Mexico to help establish a Mexican Ministry of Public Information and Propaganda

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