Foreign Policy Blogs

Reviewing the Candidates' PD Strategies

Steven Barnes, Assistant Dean of Public Affairs at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School authored an op-ed for the International Herald Tribune yesterday. It discusses what is yet known of the three presidential candidates’ public diplomacy strategies. Here's a summary from Barnes’ piece.

Senator Obama:

In an interview with the San Fransisco Chronicle in February (listen to it here), Senator Obama “talked of funding “America Houses” overseas that would “incorporate youth centers and libraries that are needed throughout the broader Muslim world.”

He also promised to establish a “Voice Corps” – an administration would “rapidly recruit and train fluent speakers of Arabic, Bahasa, Farsi, Urdu and Turkish who can ensure our voice is heard – and that we listen – throughout the world.””

Senator Clinton:

Barnes relates that “Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton's foreign policy speeches have included the theme of re-establishing America's “moral authority” on the world stage.” Here's a recent example from a speech theSenator made in Kentucky last week:

“We are in this race because we believe it will take a commander-in-chief with the strength and knowledge to end the war in Iraq safely and quickly, and a president with experience representing the people of the United States in more than 80 countries to restore our leadership and moral authority in the world.”

Senator McCain:

 Barnes notes that last year McCain outlined a key element of his plan for overseas outreach in an interview with the Orlando Sentinel:

“I would establish a single, independent agency responsible for all of America's public diplomacy,” he said. Such an agency would, among other things, establish “American libraries with Internet access throughout the world” and create “a professional corps of public-diplomacy experts who speak the local language and whose careers are spent promoting American values, ideas, culture and education.”

Finally, if you look hard, you might see within Barnes’ commentary a mention of a certain blog…



Melinda Brouwer

Melinda Brower holds a Masters degree in Global Politics from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She received her bachelor's degree in Political Science and Spanish at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received a graduate diploma in International Relations from the University of Chile during her tenure as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar. She has worked on Capitol Hill, at the State Department, for Foreign Policy magazine and the American Academy of Diplomacy. She presently works for an internationally focused non-profit research organization in Washington, DC.