New VOA Director Outlines Approach for News Broadcasting

Amanda Bennett, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist appointed to head the Voice of America, called for "exciting, unique content that speaks to the advantages of the U.S." as the hallmark of the U.S. Government's international broadcasting service.  She spoke at the First Monday Communication Leadership Forum on May 2.

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PD commentary

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

Quotable: Herbert J. Bowsher on public opinion in the Vietnam war

Thursday, January 28th 2016

Academic and policy discussions of Public Diplomacy, foreign policy, and the media often look back to the war in Vietnam.  The Joint U.S. Public Affairs Office (JUSPAO) in Saigon, which briefed the media daily – the popular term for the briefings was the “Five O’Clock Follies” – was led by USIA legend Barry Zorthian.

 

Marine Corps Major Herbert J. Bowsher stepped into this contentious past and recapped “10 Lessons of Vietnam” for a new generation of Marines.  The whole article in the November, 2015, issue of Marine Corps Gazette, is worth reading, especially by information officers at embassies and public affairs advisors in State Department bureaus.  Here’s his Lesson 6, “Understand the Strategic Center of Gravity":

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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: John Bolton on “ideologies driven by an obsession”

Thursday, January 28th 2016

“Refusing to acknowledge that we face an ideologically motivated foe is not a grand strategy,” wrote former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John R. Bolton, now at the American Enterprise Institute.  His op-ed, “Terrorism is the symptom, ideology the disease,” was published in The Boston Globe on December 31, 2016.  Here are a few main points:

 

  • Although communism and radical Islam differ in countless ways, they share one critical element: they are ideologies driven by an obsession to force the real world to match their preconceptions, whether of class conflict or superior religious belief. Terrorist attacks are simply manifestations of the ideology, the symptoms of the threat, not the threat itself. Accordingly, US policies that ignore the ideological driving force will fail, because they are not addressing the real menace.
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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: Jason Topshe on “soft skills,” the “moral level of war,” and cultural understanding

Sunday, January 24th 2016

“Both state and non-state actors have used terrorism, propaganda, recruitment through social media, and combined regular and guerilla tactics to defeat far technologically superior forces. No matter what name we give to the poorly understood methods of irregular war, the fact remains that it is still war, and we must adapt if we are to be successful in it,” wrote Captain Jason Topshe, a Marine Corps infantry officer with the U.S. Military Training Mission in Saudi Arabia. His article, “Evolving the Marine Corps for Irregular Warfare,” appeared in the January, 2016, issue of Marine Corps Gazette.  His outside-the-box proposals on infantry organization, training, drill, local dress, and horses (!) will be of interest to civilians as well as members of the armed forces.  Public diplomacy practitioners will appreciate his comments on “soft skills” that include negotiation, de-escalation, and cultural understanding:

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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: Johnny Sokolosky on globalization, conflicts, diplomacy, and information

Sunday, January 24th 2016

“. . . globalization is the integration of trade, ideas, services, information, technologies, and communications. . . . in the past few decades the phenomenon exponentially progressed with advances in communication and transportation technologies,” wrote Army Captain Johnny S. Sokolosky Jr., currently assigned to the Multinational Force and Observers in Egypt. His article, “The Future of War: How Globalization is Changing the Security Paradigm,” appeared in the January-February, 2016, issue of Military Review.  Writing that “globalization is a force that is significantly changing how the world works,” Captain Sokolosky joins the ranks of armed forces professionals who are thinking about the future.  The globalized world, he judged, will need more diplomacy, information, and communication.  Here are a few excerpts from his article that will interest Public Diplomacy practioners:

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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: Robert Gates on “starved,” “disarmed,” and “dismantled” strategic communication

Saturday, January 23rd 2016

On January 20, 2016, former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates gave the Paul C. Warnke Lecture on International Security at the Council on Foreign Relations.  Journalist Tom Brokaw welcomed Secretary Gates and moderated the Q&A session.  Gates saluted the work of USIA during the Cold War and offered some thoughts on the consequences of weakened strategic communications.  Public diplomacy and broadcasting practitioners will be interested in these 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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