Pres Biden and PM Johnson in front of G7 sign

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. POTUS AND CODELS — THEY’RE BACK!: Both President (POTUS) Biden and Vice President Harris have taken their first foreign trips since assuming office to demonstrate that the United States is once again showing leadership and consulting with its friends. The President’s destination was Europe for the G7 summit in the UK, the NATO and U.S.-EU summit…

Biden’s Leadership Message Leads with Vaccines

A wide angle Agence France Presse photo of President Biden, on his first overseas trip as chief executive, displays a crowd sitting behind him.  Of a hundred spectators in the stands, all except two are wearing black masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The President was speaking to U.S. Air Force staff in Suffolk,…

June: a Landmark Month for U.S. Diplomacy

by Alan Heil When I led VOA during a couple of years in the mid-1990s, we debated what might lie ahead on for the world and the U.S. as we deployed  more than a score of correspondents around a post-Cold War planet. Who then, or for more than two decades since, could have foreseen the…

Ambassador Jean Manes official portrait

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. PUBLIC DIPLOMACY VETERAN RETURNS TO EL SALVADOR: It is always good to see when the services of an experienced PD professional are appreciated. The best recent example of this is Secretary of State Blinken’s May 26, 2021 designation of Ambassador Jean Manes as Charge’ d’ affaires ad interim to the Republic of El Salvador. She…

A Free Press Matters: a Worldwide Roundup

In a World Press Freedom Day message yesterday May 3, President Biden warned that “the truth is under attack” and that “authoritarians” are trying to undermine the media globally. In a statement on the White House website, the president praised objective journalists around the world and urged them “to continue holding those in power to…

Aircraft with USAID relief packages andU.S. officials in foreground

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. THE STRUGGLE TO REFORM PUBLIC DIPLOMACY STAFFING: As any PD officer knows, the effort to inform and influence foreign publics relies heavily on support from approximately 2,600 loyal PD Locally Employed Staff (LES) who do PD work in 189 U.S. missions around the world. Any attempt to reform their functions, structures, and position descriptions is…

Five PD Favorites by Mike Anderson

1. MATT POTTINGER, CHINA, AND “VACCINE DIPLOMACY”:  Matt who? Although he is not a household name, the low-profile Pottinger probably had more influence on the Trump Administration’s “get tough on China” policy and strategic communications than anyone else. As NSC’s Asia Director and then the Deputy National Security Advisor from the very start of the Trump…