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In January 2010, just after the Haitian earthquake and Chinese government attempts to hack into Google, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave a major speech outlining the United States‘ foreign policy concerning Internet Freedom. She presented five freedoms that allow open communication platforms and facilitate a worldview focusing on the Internet as the great equalizer.

October 26, 2012
Currently, some 1,500 American university students study in Israel each year. The MASA program, which is part of the Jewish Agency, hopes to boost those numbers considerably so that one day they are on a par with places like London and Paris, where tens of thousands of young Americans go to spend a semester abroad each year.
The Jerusalem Post, September 16, 2010

On July 26th 2012, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to the United States appeared on Comedy Central. Sir Peter Westmacott’s interview on The Colbert Report generated more positive feedback than any other appearance since his arrival in Washington six months earlier. The hook, of course, was the imminent opening of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The questioning was as playful as expected: “What is the special relationship? Is that anything like confirmed bachelors?” “New York City vied for the 2012 Games.

The clutch of articles this issue reflect a familiar idea albeit rendered fresh by a new cast of characters: the idea is quite simply that because motion pictures command a large audience and have a role in forming that audience’s perceptions of the wider world, they should be of concern to diplomats. Historically this idea has taken a number of forms, all of which are in evidence here.

As the BRICS become more active international players—both individually and collectively—they rely on a growing repertoire of public diplomacy initiatives.

This month, PDiN Monitor focused on two trends that were prevalent: the role of film, and the role of non-state actors (which, as can be seen by our graph on Public Diplomacy News by Topic, doubled from the last analysis period to this one). The role of film in public diplomacy is undeniably important, and this year’s Academy Awards sparked a discussion of that role.

Not much imagination is required to appreciate the impact in Indonesia of Barack Obama‘s recent visit.  There he was, using phrases of the Indonesian language not like some stumbling tourist but rather as one who has real roots in the nation.  His reminiscences of his boyhood exploits stirred the spirits of this rising Pacific power that can claim the President of the United States as one of its o