Recommended Reading

Some great posts out there this week. Picking a top billing was tough.

Top Billing! Information DisseminationThe Calm Before The Storm in Haiti

One topic kept popping up today among many observers: why is China kicking the State Department’s ass in strategic communication in Haiti? It doesn’t look good when somehow the Chinese can get a fully loaded plane into Haiti all the way from China before we can get many of our own search and rescue teams in from the US. I sat dumbfounded watching CNN this afternoon seeing a big red Chinese flag waiving in the background, and became frustrated when I saw a different Chinese flag an hour later behind an NBC reporter in a different area. There cannot possibly be that many Chinese in Haiti already, and they did bring humanitarian supplies and not flags, right? What the heck is going on?

This is soft power; symbolism and perception matters a lot to achieving strategic objectives in disaster recovery and humanitarian response operations. In the opening hours of crisis, the people are still in shock. The first 48 hours is the calm before the storm, and every detail in public communication and public diplomacy matters. I was seriously impressed when I saw State Department folks engaged in an actual conversation on Twitter today, but every element of government needs to get organized a bit better in the online space.

Galrahn has become so much the # 1 “go-to Navy blog guy” that it is all to easy to overlook the fact that he is also a very shrewd analyst for strategic and political issues. This post demonstrates why (and I bet Ray does not speak even a word of Creole).

The Scholar’s Stage – America’s Greatest Challenge — and Danger  

Page 1 of 3 | Next page