Our round-up of news, notes, tips, and tweets exhibiting how public diplomacy affects the world each and every day.
Here is the full story on the tweet we posted yesterday that quoted a senior U.S. official as saying Putin has no soft power “game.”
The White House conceded Sunday night that Russia had full operational control of the Crimean peninsula in Ukraine, but senior U.S. officials painted the picture of a weak, soft Russian President Vladimir Putin who stood everything to lose from this point. “This chapter has proven decisively that when it comes to soft power, the power of attraction, Vladimir Putin has no game,” a senior Obama administration official said during a background briefing with reporters Sunday night. “So he’s left with hard power. And it’s a very dangerous game to play in Ukraine because the Ukrainian people are not going to stand for it, and nor is the international community.” [Business Insider]
[email protected]: #softpower is a concept at @Kennedy_School, not at #Kremlin, I’m afraid. #Ukraine is primary to #Russia national interest.
— Lukas Streiff (@LukasStreiff) March 3, 2014
The Public Diplomacy Council interviewed James Thomas Snyder about his recent book on public diplomacy and his work with NATO.
Public diplomacy for an international organization is very different from the same work done for a country. NATO is a constituent body of the Allies. It’s more abstract. We had fewer resources to work with than probably any individual Allied nation. So getting acceptance from foreign audiences for NATO was a unique challenge. The political nuance and history of every country is different, but at the same time the message can’t deviate so dramatically that you risk confusing the next audience. In those circumstances the worse-case outcome is delivering something so bland that nobody remembers you or cares. But I still found the idea of 28 sovereign democratic nations, working together in common interest, resonated profoundly no matter the audience. [Public Diplomacy Council]
Call it public-to-public diplomacy: Ukrainian activists using the Internet in an effort to amend the narrative that Russian state television was selling.
Faced with what they call misleading reports on Russian state television that ethnic-nationalist violence is sweeping Ukraine, Internet-savvy Ukrainian activists drew attention on Sunday to video and images posted online that showed street protests in support of the new government in Kiev, and acts of violence instigated by men waving the Russian flag. [New York Times]
Food is not only culture, it’s diplomacy: @LeahSelim of @globalkitchenny at @TEDxGowanus: http://t.co/G03gutzz4o #gastrodiplomacy
— Gastrodiplomacy (@gastrodiplomacy) March 3, 2014
This is a well put-together piece on relationship between the U.S. counterinsurgency teams in Afghanistan, effective international aid and science diplomacy.
The Afghan government and the international aid community have recognized that effective, meaningful change is of a generational scale. Development and aid efforts should be “bottom up,” in a grassroots style, which involves local communities in small-scale projects. These projects should also include an educational component with evaluation programs in place to assess the quality of the project. The U.S. government has realized these criticisms and has improved the PRT mission, but it has also started anew by establishing specialized, grassroots U.S. Army Agriculture Development Teams (ADT). These teams are unique to the military, for they provide actual expertise in the form of professional soldier-experts who work as a twelve-man egalitarian military team. ADTs operate from the “bottom up” in rural areas of Afghanistan with local communities on small, easily replicated projects that include educational components with follow-up assessments. Evidently, following recommendations from the international aid community, these teams are supported, not by government agencies, but by “reach-back” universities, institutions that have committed their remote assistance, in the United States and Afghanistan. The development teams flip efforts from a bureaucratic, top-down style to a bottom-up, grassroots approach driven by subject-matter experts who work daily with and in the local community. [Science & Diplomacy]
Needs a little work in the audio recording department, but not a bad idea.
You speak #Greek! You just don’t know it! #diplovine#digitaldiplomacy#smw14https://t.co/KE0QnKI8RG
— Embassy of Greece (@GreeceInUSA) February 18, 2014
photo credit: Reuters