Operationalizing Public Diplomacy

Authored by: Matthew C. Armstrong

Routledge Handbook of Public Diplomacy

Print publication date:  October  2008
Online publication date:  November  2008

Print ISBN: 9780415953016
eBook ISBN: 9780203891520
Adobe ISBN: 9781135926892

10.4324/9780203891520.ch8

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Abstract

American public diplomacy wears combat boots. Over the last two decades, American national security has increasingly relied on the threat of a muscular military intelligence, and technological resources while ignoring more effective, and cheaper, tools of persuasion. The downward spiral of Iraq and Afghanistan, and plummeting public opinions of the United States around the world, suggest the U.S. has decoupled the “big stick” and “speaking softly” of Theodore Roosevelt’s time-tested adage without understanding its insight or utility. Fortunately, the value of speaking softly is being rediscovered, albeit by the Defense Department.

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