Trump administration

Social media is a great campaign tool. And it is a great way for government to connect with constituents. But without some serious discipline, the use of social media by government officials can be a threat to the nation. What we are seeing now is a learning curve at the White House that could yield disaster before it reaches maturity. That is a result none of us should aspire to.

"The greatest damage might be in the realm of public diplomacy," write Nathan Brown and Michelle Dunne of the Carnegie Middle East Center. "Using a broad brush to paint all Muslim Brotherhood organizations as terrorists would be understood by many Muslims around the world as a declaration of war against non-violent political Islamists — and indeed against Islam itself."

Peace Meal Kitchen is an exercise in gastrodiplomacy – fostering cultural exchange and increased understanding through food. As NPR wrote in 2014, while the concept is fairly new in terms of its place in cultural diplomacy as a whole, “the idea itself can be traced back to the ancient Romans, who often made peace with their enemies over a good meal.”

How should the Trump administration approach Pyongyang diplomatically? Given a widespread, rigid view among U.S. policymakers that the Kim regime is nothing more than an “evil deceiver” and the tendency of those policymakers to automatically equate talking to North Korea with a reward, setting up a low-profile back channel with North Korean negotiators should be prioritized first. 

VOA is probably not a high priority for the new administration, but inevitably it will fall under scrutiny. [...] I was initially skeptical about the alarmist reports concerning VOA's future. But with a president who touts "America First" and a Republican majority in Congress unwilling to defy the White House, I am no longer so sanguine. Anything is possible.

Big Brother, by Thomas Cizauskas

What does the Trump administration's anti-media environment mean for the Voice of America?