It's one thing to maintain ruthless control over an oppressed citizenry. But quite something else to tweet about it well. In today's Davos-driven geopolitics, even authoritarian leaders need to be savvy about public relations. That's why even the toughest leaders are all up on the Internet; they use Twitter to craft their images without the hassle and noise of competing parties or media bias.

Peace talks beginning today in Washington between Israelis and Palestinians will prompt the use of the new accounts to communicate events and news from the talks. Although Israel’s Prime Minister’s Office has had an official website for some time Netanyahu apparently realizes the benefits of using social networking sites to get his message across more widely.

Google can be seen as an American political tool, argues cyber diplomacy analyst Evgeny Morozov in a new editorial pegged to the announcement of an Iranian national search engine. Furthermore, he indicts many Silicon Valley companies for collaborating with the State Department to turn business matters into political questions.

Hear the words “Foreign and Commonwealth Office” and you might think of fusty old English ambassadors sat behind oaken desks reading leather-bound books. It turns out they’re more likely to be tweeting a link to their latest Flickr photo set these days.

For the last two weeks, North Korean propaganda has flooded the Internet–courtesy of the Internet, interestingly enough, and not North Korea. A North Korea government official tells Forbes that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is not using Twitter, Facebook and YouTube...

South Korea has begun blocking access to a Twitter account operated by a North Korean Web site.The site, Uriminzokkiri, launched the Twitter feed @uriminzok last week and has been providing Korean-language headlines and links to propaganda-heavy news items on its home page. It's launch was widely reported and the publicity has brought it more than 9,000 followers in the week since it launched.

When news broke earlier this week that North Korea had started a Twitter account (under the name uriminzok or “Our People” in Korean), it seemed inevitable a parody version would emerge.

August 17, 2010

This month, the Obama Administration's much-evangelized '21st century statecraft' approach has returned to the headlines...