VOA Director Bennett to speak at First Monday Forum

"America’s story is a lot bigger than we acknowledge," Amanda Bennett asserted when taking office as the director of the Voice of America.  In the photo, The CEO of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, John Lansing, swears in Bennett while her predecessor, Kelu Chao, holds the Bible.  The First Monday Communication Leadership lunch forum on April 14 will be among Bennett's first speaking engagements.

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PD commentary

Selection and commentary by PDC members and authoritative experts in the field

Quotable: Matthew Wallin on messaging by governments, centers, and individuals

Tuesday, January 19th 2016

“The US Government is currently struggling to find the most effective method to reduce the number of people influenced by or recruited into terrorist groups like ISIS or Al Qaeda,” wrote Matthew Wallin of the American Security Project in a January 14, 2016, essay, “Ch-Ch-Changes in the US Anti-Extremist Messaging Strategy.”  Wallin reviewed the thinking behind the announced reorganization of the anti-ISIS communication campaign, and he usefully categorized some basic approaches.  Rather than rely on centers, he recommended helping individuals “develop their own messages and efforts after they have gained access to the education, training, and equipment needed to enable them.”  Some excerpts:

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A Minister-Counselor in the State Department's Senior Foreign Service when he finished his federal career, Donald M. Bishop is a trainer, speaker, and mentor in Public Diplomacy and Communication. He also speaks on history and leadership. After serving as President of the Public Diplomacy Council, he now is a member of the Board of Directors.

...click authors name for more info

Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: Choksy and Choksy on media portals and internet outreach

Tuesday, January 19th 2016

“The basic problem, which the White House’s communication spin cannot surmount, is that Islamic terrorism is growing in scope rather than being tamped down.  So it’s time for a comprehensive strategy against those who resort to violence allegedly for Islam,” wrote Jamsheed K. Choksy and Carol E. B. Choksy in an article, “Time for a Comprehensive Strategy Against Islamic Terrorism in 2016,” posted on the Small Wars Journal website on January 11, 2016.  Jamsheed Choksy is Distinguished Professor of Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana Univesity.  Carol Choksy is adjunct lecturer in Strategic Intelligence and Information Management at IU.

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A Minister-Counselor in the State Department's Senior Foreign Service when he finished his federal career, Donald M. Bishop is a trainer, speaker, and mentor in Public Diplomacy and Communication. He also speaks on history and leadership. After serving as President of the Public Diplomacy Council, he now is a member of the Board of Directors.

...click authors name for more info

Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: Claude Barfield on administration discussions on CVE with Silicon Valley

Tuesday, January 19th 2016

“[The administration’s] weekend cross-country pilgrimage [to Silicon Valley] and the plea for help on combatting Islamic extremists’ recruitment and calls to arms on social media signals a clear, though unacknowledged, failure of the US State Department’s assigned leadership in fashioning effective counter messages,” wrote Claude Barfield, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, in a January 15, 2016, article, “Obama administration’s command performance in Silicon Valley: Was this trip really necessary?” on the TechPolicyDaily website. Here are a few of Barfield’s comments on the meeting with senior executives of the tech companies:

 

  • The president has repeatedly called for action on this front, arguing to world leaders at the United Nations in September, “ideologies are not defeated with guns; they are defeated by better ideas — a more attractive and compelling vision.”
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A Minister-Counselor in the State Department's Senior Foreign Service when he finished his federal career, Donald M. Bishop is a trainer, speaker, and mentor in Public Diplomacy and Communication. He also speaks on history and leadership. After serving as President of the Public Diplomacy Council, he now is a member of the Board of Directors.

...click authors name for more info

Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: McCants and Watts on Dabiq magazine

Tuesday, January 19th 2016

“Despite the praise heaped on the so-called Islamic State for its cutting-edge propaganda online, one of its most effective products is decidedly low tech. Dabiq, ISIS’s online news magazine, has a small but devoted readership that spans the globe,” wrote Will McCants of the Center for Middle East Policy and Clint Watts of the Foreign Policy Research Institute in an article, “Why the U.S. Can’t Make a Magazine Like ISIS,” posted on The Daily Beast website on January 11, 2016.  Dabiq includes “attack reports,” biographies of fighters, and other features.

 

This alumnus of the U.S. Information Agency cannot help but recall that the agency had a vigorous magazine diplomacy, thrown overboard with no warning in the early 1990s as part of the “peace dividend,” bringing to an end such venerable and respected publications as America Illustrated (in Russian), Al-Majal (in Arabic), Topic (in English and French for Africa), Economic Impact, Dialog, Trends (in Japanese), and others. 

 

Here are some quotes from the article by McCants and Watts.  Public Diplomacy practitioners will sigh loudly at the second-to-last bullet below:

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A Minister-Counselor in the State Department's Senior Foreign Service when he finished his federal career, Donald M. Bishop is a trainer, speaker, and mentor in Public Diplomacy and Communication. He also speaks on history and leadership. After serving as President of the Public Diplomacy Council, he now is a member of the Board of Directors.

...click authors name for more info

Author: Donald M. Bishop

Quotable: Scott Atran on ISIS, a revolution

Monday, January 18th 2016

“Despite our relentless propaganda campaign against the Islamic State as vicious, predatory and cruel – most of which might be right – there is little recognition of its genuine appeal, and even less of the joy it engenders,” wrote Scott Atran, director of research in anthropology at the CNRS, École Normale Supérieure, and a senior research fellow at Oxford.  His essay, “ISIS is a revolution,” was posted to the aeon.co website on December 15, 2015.  It will jolt many comfortable assumptions.

 

In his article, Atran revisited many historical movements that relied on revolutionary violence – the Roman occupation of Judea and the Jewish Zealots, the American and French revolutions, 1848, the anarchist and Bolshevik movements, the Nazi takeover of Germany, and al Qaeda and the Islamic State.  He delved into the psychology of revolution, terror, sacred causes, and willingness to sacrifice, citing along the way Terence, Ibn Khaldun, Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Robespierre, Edmund Burke, Charles Darwin, Theodore Roosevelt, Charles de Gaulle, Hitler, Martin Heidegger, Raymond Aron, Abu Bakr Naji, and Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.  In addition to proposing historical parallels, Atran provided summaries of recent anthropological research among Muslims in Europe, the United States, and refugee camps.

 

This is another article that deserves reading in full.  Here are just a very few excerpts:

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A Minister-Counselor in the State Department's Senior Foreign Service when he finished his federal career, Donald M. Bishop is a trainer, speaker, and mentor in Public Diplomacy and Communication. He also speaks on history and leadership. After serving as President of the Public Diplomacy Council, he now is a member of the Board of Directors.

...click authors name for more info

Author: Donald M. Bishop

The Public Diplomacy Council is a nonprofit organization committed to the academic study, professional practice, and responsible advocacy of public diplomacy. Founded in 1988, the Council serves the community of public diplomacy professionals, professors and students interested in public diplomacy.

 

 

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