Noteworthy

“Asked about ‘globalization, especially the increasing connections of our economy with others around the world,’ majorities in six of the seven [Muslim] nations polled say that it is ‘mostly good’ for their country. Approval is highest among Egyptians and Nigerian Muslims (79% and 78% saying mostly good, respectively). Sixty-three percent of Azerbaijanis, 61 percent of both Iranians and Indonesians, and 58 percent of Palestinians see globalization as mostly good. While support in Turkey does not reach a majority, a plurality still calls globalization mostly good (39% to 28%). On average across all seven publics, 63 percent say that globalization is good for their own countries. Only 25 percent think it is mostly bad.” – PIPA/WorldPublicOpinion.org survey results.

“[Joseph] Nye, author of Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics, said that recreating USIA would cost a new U.S. president political capital. Nye said that capital would be better invested in a White House coordinator and strategist for public diplomacy.” From the post Ideas Abound for Improving U.S. Public Diplomacy Effort: U.S. national security tied to success in public diplomacy at America.gov. Quoted in the post are me, Kathy Fitzpatrick, Joe Nye, and Nancy Snow.

“I also see technology attempting to solve a real and identified problem, but the new processes required are overly complex for the field. This complexity requires training to reach an acceptable level of operational effectiveness. Given the nature of the competing taskings and limited training time, this inevitably results in the reduction or elmination of other training.” Jedburgh in a discussion titled Techcentricity and today’s Armed Forces at the Small Wars Council. In the same thread, Sam Liles, who probably programs in Assembly, cracked the following (very bad and thus repeated here) joke: “There are 10 types of people in the world. Those who understand binary and those who don't.” As we continue to explore technological advantages, we must not ignore the human in the loop and in front of the sensor.

“By comparison with both allies and adversaries, the U.S. Government investment in public diplomacy is low. In absolute terms, the United States is outspent by France and the Soviet Union and is nearly equaled by West Germany. ... A comprehensive, periodic, published analysis of Soviet propaganda in the United States would tend to put Soviet purposes in clearer perspective. It would tend to make the American public and press less vulnerable to Soviet deception.” From a 1979 General Accounting Office (not Accountability) report titled “The Public Diplomacy of Other Countries: Implications for the United States.” So far, very little of the discussion on revising America’s public diplomacy outreach, informational or cultural and educational, has considered the long-considered goal, if imperfectly executed, of informing and inoculating the American public.

“Western leaders face two fronts in their stand-off with Russia over its use of force to re-draw borders in Europe: one is the Russian army on the ground. The other is a propaganda war.” From a BBC report titled Russia’s Propaganda War.