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Public Diplomacy? Whatever.

May 27, 2011

For most countries the big public diplomacy problem is not that other people disagree with you it’s that they don’t pay attention to you .  This is not a problem that the US has often so I was amused to see this in the Cablegate files.

In 2005 Washington is having a big push on countering the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and has asked the embassy in Ecuador if it needs PD assistance.  They respond that they will put an article in the newspaper because..

There simply is not sufficient interest here in WMD non-proliferation efforts and the PSI [Proliferation Security Initiative] to justify investments in DVCs , expert visits, NGO cultivation, and/or other PD strategies

The full cable is here

Incidentally while we’ve been paying attention to the Royal Wedding, Osama Bin Laden, etc WikiLeaks have released a lot of new material from the cablegate files – there’s now nearly 13,000 available.  From a PD point of view there’s more nuts and bolts traffic dealing with requests for visits and exchanges.  Some of the most useful tags you can use to search the cables are listed here.

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