Every year Cultural Tourism DC, in conjunction with international embassies, hosts the famous "Around the World" and "Shortcut to Europe" open house series. This tremendous two day event spaced over two weekends, gives visitors the chance to tour more than 70 embassies where they can learn about different cultures through food, art and music. But what happens if you are not in town during this once a year grand event? If you want a similar effect, consider staying at a hostel.

Five minutes before the first match of the World Cup, 400 people were packed into the residence of Brazilian Ambassador Mauro Vieira for Thursday’s opening game from São Paulo. Men, women, even babies were transfixed by the 10 huge television screens, afraid to miss one second of the action. In this alternate universe, the gods are bronzed-faced Adonises and everyone bleeds yellow and green. Every four years, diplomatic Washington takes an unofficial sabbatical. Embassies insist that work will continue uninterrupted during the month-long World Cup. Everyone is lying.

A new initiative shows promise in promoting U.S. higher education through traditional PD channels.

Israeli foreign ministry employees have intensified a long-running dispute over pay and conditions by declaring a full-scale strike at home and at diplomatic missions around the world. "The ministry in Jerusalem will remain closed and Israel's missions abroad will not open as of Monday morning, March 24," the ministry's website said.

The Canadian embassy in Washington, D.C., opened its doors last week to the city’s digital diplomats for an event where they could brag about their use of social media and pick up some tips. A dozen embassies and international organizations, including the World Bank and European Union delegation, participated in the “Digital Diplomacy Open House” that was held in partnership with the Digital Diplomacy Coalition.

Abu Dhabi: Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, expressed his gratitude to France for supporting the UAE’s efforts to get exemption for UAE citizens from entry visas to Schengen nations.

“The styles of public diplomacy are now constrained by our fear,” says Richard Arndt, a veteran U.S. diplomat and the author of The First Resort of Kings: American Cultural Diplomacy in the Twentieth Century. ”Which after all is what terrorists try to produce, and which they've amply succeeded in.” Arndt says as the United States reestablished diplomatic relations with European countries after World War II, the goal was to build the most beautiful embassies possible.