Sunday, August 28th 2016
“Public Diplomacy (PD) and strategic communications (SC) are needed on a massive scale to combat international jihadism, future non-state actors and authoritarian state information agencies and efforts challenging the US identity and influence.” Writing on the inhomelandsecurity.com website on October 27, 2013, Brett Daniel Shehadey outlined some basic concepts of the D-I-M-E (Diplomatic, Information, Military, and Economic elements of national power) framework, and he took a special look at the weaknesses of the “I” and “D” elements. His essay was titled “Putting the “D” and “I” Back in DIME.” Three years after it was published, it’s still a good primer. Here are some highlights:Read More
Sunday, November 22nd 2015
In the nine lines of effort in the U.S. national strategy against ISIS, line 7 is “disrupting the flow of foreign fighters.” The State Department’s Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications, reporting to the Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, plays a primary role.
John R. Deni, Research Professor of Joint, Interagency, Intergovernmental, and Multinational (JIIM) Security Studies at the US Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute, provided a useful review of the high level policy thinking on the foreign fighter threat by NATO, the European Union, and individual governments in an article, “Beyond Information Sharing: NATO and the Foreign Fighter Threat,” in the Summer, 2015, issue of Parameters.
The body of the article focused on intelligence sharing (spoiler: easier said than done), but Public Diplomacy people who are part of the effort to discourage the flow of foreign fighters – and to assure that returned foreign fighters do not bring jihad back home – will find Deni’s detailed summary useful. Also, his conclusions suggest parallel efforts by Public Diplomacy, especially with the smaller nations in the alliance.Read More
Friday, November 20th 2015
Public Diplomacy officers who have dealt with armed forces counterparts learn of their focus on strategic communications (STRATCOM), communications strategy (COMMSTRAT), communications synchronization, communication through action, and the “say-do gap.” Army Lieutenant Colonel David Hylton, a public affairs officer, usefully reviewed these concepts in an article, “Commanders and Communication” in the September-October, 2015, issue of Military Review.
- Strategic communication (STRATCOM) was the first term adopted by the government (popularized following 9/11) that attempted to provide a working definition for synchronized strategic-level activities aimed at communicating a unified message supporting strategic objectives.
- STRATCOM was initially viewed as the guiding force behind alignment of the diplomatic, informational, military, and economic instruments of national power to achieve national goals and objectives—a complex and daunting undertaking.
Thursday, October 15th 2015
“Technology transforms conflict. . . . This time the major driver for change is the information age and its associated technology: the Internet, wireless technologies, smart phones, and the many other new screens and gadgets that surround us,” wrote Mark F. Laity, Chief of Strategic Communications at SHAPE, NATO’s military headquarters in charge of Alliance military operations.
Laity’s essay, “NATO and the Power of Narrative,” was included in the Legatum Institute’s major September, 2015, report, Information at War: From China’s Three Warfares to NATO’s Narratives. He cited Russia’s Chief of Defense, General Valery Gerasimov: “The information space opens wide asymmetrical possibilities for reducing the fighting potential of the enemy.”
Laity’s essay focused on how Russia uses perception in information war, how it has “operationalized” the use of information, and the role of narrative. Here are some bullet points:Read More