Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy

Today I sat in on a State Department Daily Press Briefing which is a briefing by the Press Office to inform Americans on what's happening at State- public affairs. This is different from the Foreign Press Office I work in which directs its briefings to Foreign Offices- public diplomacy. The briefing included an update of the Secretary and Special Representative Holbrooke and then allowed press to ask questions such as the US's policy on Israeli settlements, the situation in Honduras and American Citizens Quarantined in China Due to H1N1 Virus.

After the briefing, I had another meeting in the "Main State" building. There are several off site annexes; the Foreign Press Center is located across town. Waiting for my meeting, I wandered around the building to discover a whole city! There was a dry cleaners, a post office, a gym (the one Condi worked out in everyday), two convenient stores, two gift shops (anyone want any souvenirs), a cafeteria complete with fro-yo and several food choices.

After being lost in the huge maze of a building, I found my way to my meeting. I attended a EUR/PPD meeting which is the public diplomacy meeting (PPD) for the European Affairs bureau (EUR). In the meeting I ran into a familiar face, Mark Smith, who was the diplomat in residence at USC MPD. The meeting was an opportunity for people from all related offices to share their PD projects. The Bureau of International Information Programs (IIP) reported on its ongoing program "Democracy Is..". To find out more on what IIP does click here.

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