strategic approach

November 19, 2018

Gunboat, Cerebral, Public, Track One are all approaches to diplomacy. But do they need to be rethought?

The Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research hosted a symposium in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday devoted to confronting the threats of extremism and terrorism. [...] The event is part of a larger struggle led by the UAE to use education and religious messaging as a way to confront terrorism in the region and the world.

Comparing China's public diplomacy to sports activities, where both professionals and public support are critical to success, Zheng addressed a group of top government officials, international affairs experts, and media professionals at the 2012 Charhar public diplomacy conference in Zhangjiakou, Hebei province on Aug. 18.

“New media and connective technologies enhance our ability to listen…Social media provides new ways for us to keep our ear to the ground,” said McHale. “Of course, we are not interested in developing social media platforms for the sake of having them. We are interested in applying social media to promote our strategic objectives in the Americas.”

Given that so many American groups, from Christian evangelicals and the American Jewish community to the oil lobby, have a position on the U.S.-Israel relationship, it’s hardly surprising the issue generates heated emotions that tend to make the subject impervious to analysis. This affects American decision-making and public diplomacy

It is in America's best interest that Egypt develop into a state that supports tolerance and peace. U.S. assistance can and should be conditional on Egypt's adopting such values. ... "The U.S. should be clear with the Egyptian public about what kind of state it can partner with. We should define clearly the kind of country we want to see, not which leader we do or do not want to lead."

It is unclear what might have precipitated this precipitate shift in Chinese public diplomacy. Nothing seems to have transpired in the South China Sea, especially regarding Vietnam or the Philippines, to elicit such a series of over-wrought Chinese reactions. Just a few possible explanations include:

The cynical take believes that the U.S. has in fact changed its foreign policy as Obama claims and as his responses to the Arab Spring this year suggest, but has made an exception for Bahrain... The Bahraini opposition is largely Shia, but most Arabs (and most Muslims, for that matter) are Sunni. The "soft power" dividends of pushing Bahrain to reform, the U.S. may have decided, just aren't there.