Obama starts well with Muslims but must do more (The Christian Science Monitor)

CAIRO (March 16, 2009) — Perceptions are a critical piece of the foreign policy matrix. From the perception of the Islamic world, the Obama administration is ticking off many of the right boxes. First, President Obama signaled his intention to make a major foreign-policy speech in an Islamic capital during his first 100 days in […]

The Murrow Option for U.S. Public Diplomacy (The Daily Star Beirut)

By  Lawrence Pintak and William Rugh CAIRO (Feb. 17, 2009): Almost 50 years ago, President John F. Kennedy turned to America’s most respected journalist to tell the nation’s story to the world. Edward R. Murrow was the father of television journalism. His valiant reporting from wartime London during the Blitz galvanized the American public and […]

Misreading the Arab Media (The New York Times)

(May 25, 2008) “ARABIC TV does not do our country justice,” President Bush complained in early 2006, calling it a purveyor of “propaganda” that “just isn’t right, it isn’t fair, and it doesn’t give people the impression of what we’re about.” The president’s statement, along with the decision by the New York Stock Exchange to […]

Boycotting Al Jazeera (PostGlobal)

CAIRO, Egypt (March 26, 2008) – It appears that Israel is taking a page from the George W. Bush book of public diplomacy: attempting to influence coverage by Arab media by boycotting the most influential television station in the Arab world. In the latest news from Jerusalem, it seems the Ehud Olmert government has decided […]

America’s Media Bubble (NYT/Int’l Herald Tribune)

CAIRO (Oct. 19, 2006) — The United States no longer controls the script. That’s a reality Democratic congressional leaders must digest as they seek to recast America’s relationship with the world. There used to be a time when the U.S. media wrote the global narrative. The world saw itself through a largely American camera lens. […]

The Middle East: It’s all just too darned complicated (Daily News Egypt/Turkish Daily News)

First Published: October 2, 2006 Memo: To Arabs and Muslims Re: The Middle East It’s your own fault. That’s right, the Bush administration can’t be held responsible for the mess they have made of the Middle East. You Arabs and Muslims are to blame. How can anyone be expected to develop a policy for this […]

Caught between Iraq and the hard guys (The Daily Star Lebanon)

February 28, 2006 The visit to the Middle East last week by U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza  Rice brought with it another reminder that American Middle East policy is firmly  wedged between Iraq and the hard guys. There were never any easy answers to the Middle East morass, complicated  further by the recent outbreak of […]

Why all the fuss now? (Al Ahram Weekly)

16 – 22 February 2006 In a confused world of overlapping cultures, authoritarian and extremist forces often exploit the politics of difference, writes Lawrence Pintak* We just don’t get it, do we? And by “we,” I mean all of us — Americans, Arabs, Europeans, Pakistanis, Indonesians, you name it. The cartoon controversy is just the […]

Urban Renewal in the Global Village: How Palestine became a Marker of Muslim Identity (Journal of Transnational Broadcasting Studies)

(Fall 2005) Abstract A radical restructuring of the global media landscape and the emergence of information ghettos, in which US and Muslim audiences view policy through conflicting prisms, has transformed Palestine into a marker of Muslim identity among non-Arab Muslims. This development results, in part, from a failure of the Bush administration during its first […]

Dangerous Delusions: Advertising Nonsense about Advertising America (PublicDiplomacy.org)

27 August 2004 The question of how the U.S. communicates its message to the Muslim world is arguably the most vital issue facing the nation today. It is therefore deeply disturbing when the debate is muddied by dangerously misleading pseudo-science. “University Study Shows Advertising Can Improve U.S. Image Abroad; Controversial Campaign By Charlotte Beers Shown […]