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The Daily: For September 3, 2013

September 3, 2013 6:43 am by: Category: The Daily

photo credit: Russia Beyond the Headlines; drawing by Niyaz Karim

Our round-up of news, notes, tips, and Tweets exhibiting how public diplomacy effects the world each and every day.

Dennis Rodman is heading back to North Korea today. He claims it is for reasons concerning “basketball diplomacy” and definitely not the release of Kenneth Bae. Since Bob King’s special envoy was canceled last minute… it’s Rodman, who knows.

It looks like Rodman appointed himself the official ice-breaker for North Korean and American relations. since his much-publicized, Vice-sponsored trip last February that may or may not have resulted in a so exclusive no one’s seen it interview with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Rodman also compares his own diplomatic prowess favorably to that of president Obama. Speaking to Sports Illustrated, the former basketball man put it this way in June: “Why it’s been left to me to smooth things over, I don’t know. Dennis Rodman, of all people. Keeping us safe is really not my job; it’s the black guy’s job.” Rodman’s diplomacy skills also earned rave reviews from Donald Trump.  [The Atlantic]

Along with being a major player in the Indo-Pacific, Australia is gaining traction as a force in the Southern Hemisphere thanks to its government pivot and soft power assets.

Nineteenth-century conceptions of Australia as ‘mistress of the Southern Seas’ (Henry Parkes), or the ‘great princess in the south’ (Charles Darwin), fell out of favour as economic and security challenges pushed Australia’s focus north, to Asia and North America. While engagement with East Asia and the United States remains the main game, Australian ‘soft power’ is increasing across the globe’s southern segment in a range of areas, from aid and trade to scientific research to peacekeeping. [East Asia Forum]



The European Union enjoyed strong diplomatic relations with Morsi’s Egypt thanks to the soft power outreach by Catherine Ashton, the EU’s foreign policy chief. Can this relationship be salvaged as Egypt transitions?

Professor Volker Perthes, director of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs in Berlin, thinks the Union’s soft power instruments could make a difference in Egypt but would need to be better calibrated. He said that the Union’s package of money, markets and mobility (linked to human rights) for its southern and eastern neighborhoods could be better used. “Money is fine, but its uses are exaggerated, and markets can always be expanded,” Mr. Perthes said in an interview. The most important aspect, he argued, was mobility. [New York Times]

Russia Direct’s next quarterly report will focus on how Russia needs to focus more effort on using public diplomacy and international development as soft power instruments.

Unlike countries that have international development agencies responsible for promoting foreign policy’s agendas through assisting other nations in developing better living conditions, Russia has yet to create such body. The author views this task as the key challenge since there is an obvious absence of project management skills, as well as the types of legal, political and financial competencies to establish international development institutions. [Russia Beyond the Headlines]




A specialist in the field of crisis diplomacy argues that the U.S.’s ‘Strategic Patience Policy’ towards North Korea is outdated and runs counter to national interest.

A recent experience of mine proves this point. When I returned from North Korea after three months of practicing “crisis public diplomacy,” I met with some folks at the Center for Security Studies in Georgetown University. My goal was to explain to them why the Strategic Patience Policy is a failure. It is a failure because it undermines the national security of the United States and is also counter to our interests and values. My logic follows that the Strategic Patience Policy is a Cold War-style containment policy, which is ineffective in promoting positive outcomes with the North Koreans. Following a policy of Strategic Patience assures that the US will continue to sanction every one of North Korea’s citizens, regardless of their culpability in their government’s policies. [The Fair Observer]

China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs awarded the chairman of the Pakistan-China Institute for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Pakistan China public diplomacy.’

The Pakistan-China Institute has become the principal non-official platform to promote relations between the two countries in culture, education, youth, women, media, Chinese language promotion as well as other areas of relations between the two peoples… The prominent participants from China and Pakistan emphasized the need to build a communication platform for academia, industry and policy circles to conduct research on China-Pakistan relations and policy making besides focusing on the practical issues such security, industrialization, Sino-Pakistan economic partnership. [Business Recorder]



Pakistan’s only female fighter pilot has become a role model for the girls in her country, but there are still some societal traditions she has yet to transcend.

Earlier this year she completed her training to become Pakistan’s first war-ready female fighter pilot, flying the F7-PG, a Chinese version of the MiG 21 jet. Not only does that bring the responsibility of helping guard the border with India, she has also become a role model for millions of girls who dream of following in her footsteps in a country where many are denied an education and forced to stay at home. [The Telegraph via PDiN]

The UN is offering a course in public diplomacy this fall.

This on-line course aims to provide diplomats and public officials with an idea of the strategic significance of public diplomacy in the past and future. The crucial project steps of campaigns, media relations and other public diplomacy tools are analysed, discussed and summarised in a very practice oriented manner. Legal and human resource questions complement the material in order to be applicable in many environments. [UNITAR]

Catherine Ashton Ganesh Devy international development linguistic diversity Southern Hemisphere US
The Daily: For September 4, 2013

About Michael Ardaiolo

Michael Ardaiolo is currently a student in Syracuse University's Public Diplomacy Master's Program: M.A. in International Relations from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and M.S. in Public Relations from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications. In addition, he is a recovering record slinger, a Criterion Collection addict, an NBA obsessor, and a struggling student of the Korean language.

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