The user's online handle is Abumubarak, and the forum where he spends hours at a time is not a gaming site or a forum about celebrity gossip, but one of the dozens of hard-line Islamist sites where commenters post news articles, terrorist propaganda, and their own opinions on the subject of jihad.

One implication of this is that the burden on U.S. public diplomacy has never been greater. As the role of publics expands, it becomes ever more urgent that the U.S. better understand them and effectively engage with them across a far wider spectrum (it's incomprehensible that Congress wants to slash funding for these functions at precisely the time they are most needed).

Paris has the Institute de Monde Arab, Madrid has the Casa Arab, but what about London? Home to Edgware Road, “Kebab” & Chips, and one of the largest expatriate communities of Arabs in Europe, it’s almost ironic that the United Kingdom has yet to house a permanent major cultural center to signify this strong bond between the United Kingdom and the Middle East.

On the heels of U.S. President Barack Obama's trip to Latin America, Washington's traditional role as "regional hegemon" is being reevaluated as its attention focuses on the Arab Spring and an emerging commercial competitor - China - focuses on the U.S.'s backyard.

What Eastern European intellectuals and civic actors understood by civil society was not just the 18th-century concept of the rule of law, but also the notion of horizontal self-organized groups and institutions in the public sphere that could limit the power of the state by constructing a democratic space separate from state and its ideological institutions.

Growing aspirations of youth in MENA regarding economic opportunities and political rights very quickly raised the bar for what governments need to do. To shed light on the implications of these changes and opportunities in the region and its inclusion in a global economy, the World Bank will host a discussion titled Arab Voices and Views...

Protests have already toppled governments in Tunisia and Egypt, leaving other Arab countries faced with widespread discontent. The unrest caught most people by surprise — both inside and outside the region — and has fundamentally upended at least five conventional beliefs about the Arab world

But can Israel implement an effective public diplomacy and harness “soft power” with the citizenry of its neighborhood? The answer must be yes; but Israeli public diplomacy strategy and analysis over the past decade provide little guidance for outreach to Arab publics.