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  • Arab Media (New and Old) Under Attack

    As governments in the Middle East struggle to come to grips with the surging demands for freedom of expression among their populations, media across the spectrum are coming under attack. Repressive regimes do not discriminate between old media and new. Sometimes the threat does not originate from a government but … More

    Secretary Clinton: U.S. Leadership Needed

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is famous for approaching her various jobs with discipline, and discipline was the message she repeatedly conveyed at the National Defense University Tuesday morning in her “conversation” with Secretary of Defense (and former chief of staff to her husband) Leon Panetta: The world needs U.S. … More

    Turkey Backs off Tighter Internet Controls

    Though the best-known controllers of Internet freedom are China, Cuba, Iran, and North Korea, other countries also attempt to limit Internet access for a variety of reasons. The Turkish government is a case in point, banning more websites than any European nation. In late 2009, the Turkish government stopped releasing … More

    Iran Tightens Screws on Internet Users, Again

    By the end of August, if Tehran’s plans progress as announced, Iranians going online will find themselves restricted to communicating only with each other—under the watchful eye of Iran’s cyber censors. Plans for an all-Iranian intranet to replace access to the Web were announced in early July by Iran’s Communication … More

    State Department Tweets, but Is Anyone Listening?

    The President isn’t the only one engaging Americans on Twitter. On June 28, the notice went out from the State Department’s spokesman that Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy Judith McHale would field her first “Twitter Q & A” the following morning. Under McHale, State has launched a number of new … More

    Revolving Door at State Department’s Public Diplomacy Post

    Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy Judith McHale recently announced that she is moving on, leaving the job after just two years in office. Of her Bush Administration predecessors—Karen Hughes, Patricia Harrison, and James Glassman—only Hughes lasted as long. The United States has faced great global challenges in the aftermath … More

    Obama (Finally) Talks to Voice of America

    The White House finally ended its boycott of Voice of America (VOA), the government’s own international broadcasting service, on Wednesday, hours before the President’s speech on U.S. troop withdrawal from Afghanistan. Though every President since VOA’s creation in 1942 had appeared on air with VOA, Barack Obama had not; Obama … More

    Security and Hospitability Can Go Hand in Hand: Expand the Visa Waiver Program

    When President Obama went public with his support for expansion of the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP) while in Poland last month, it was a long-overdue acknowledgement of not just Poland’s but Europe’s critical importance as an ally of the United States. (It may of course also have been an … More

    Russia: New Media, Old Tactics

    Did Russian President Dmitry Medvedev blush when he signed off on the G-8 declaration of the “Renewed Commitment for Freedom and Democracy” at last week’s G-8 Summit in Deauville, France? Probably not, but he should have. Russia today is not exactly an example of political freedom or democracy as we … More

    Don't Cut Defense to Fund State

    It is no secret that when it comes to the use of power, the Obama Administration vastly prefers “soft” power to the military variety. In a recent article in Politico, Michael Clauser, executive vice president of the Society of National Security Professionals, writes that proposed cuts to the Pentagon budget … More