soft power

The Obama administration has unofficially rebranded "war on terror" phrase that dominated public discourse throughout the Bush administration. The replacement phrase, carefully chosen, is "CVE" -- Countering Violent Extremism.

China’s current reputation for power benefits from projections about the future. Some young Chinese use these projections to demand a greater share of power now, and some Americans urge preparation for a coming conflict similar to that between Germany and Britain a century ago.

The EU’s relations with people in need in the rest of the world are based on the principle of solidarity – and rightly so, because this is the very foundation of our Union. It is not easy to show solidarity and compassion for someone else’s grief in a hard moment, all the more so when you have got problems at home. But when you do so, it leaves a lasting positive impression, and creates a very good image of Europe and Europeans around the world.

May 17, 2010

Given the cyclical nature of politics, you’d expect Pakistanis to be masters of the soft-power game. But then again maybe it’s difficult for strong arms to use a soft touch. But now the time is ripe for Pakistan to go on a charm offensive, particularly in the aftermath of Ajmal Kasab and Faisal Shahzad.

May 16, 2010

The idea of a China model can also be seen as a projection of "soft power"— achieving co-option and attraction based on values, culture and institutions. The 2008 Beijing Olympics and the current Shanghai World Expo are examples of projecting soft power.

Women's rights will not be sacrificed in any settlement between the government of Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Taliban militants, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Thursday. Clinton ruled out U.S. support, or at least her own, for negotiations with anyone who would roll back advances for Afghan women achieved since a U.S.-led invasion ousted the militant Islamic Taliban movement from power in 2001.

American journalist Douglas McGray's 2002 Foreign Policy essay "Gross National Cool" crystallized for many not only evidence that contemporary Japan had become hip and attractive, but also a nifty phrase to go with it. But that was eight years ago. And like most bits of journalistic shorthand, the phrase "cool Japan" is as convenient as it is vague...

The cross-border spending sprees are one of the most visible effects of a recent rapprochement between Turkey and Syria, part of Ankara's drive to strengthen ties with its eastern neighbours, using trade and cultural links to increase its "soft power" in the Middle East.