White House Report, March 14: Public diplomacy
Hughes nomination called sign of Bush's commitment to public diplomacy
HUGHES TO REVAMP PUBLIC DIPLOMACY, SPREAD VALUES
White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan said public diplomacy reform is a “high priority” of the Bush administration, and the nomination of Karen Hughes as under secretary for public diplomacy reflects the president’s commitment to reforming those efforts.
Speaking to the press March 14, McClellan said the United States needs to “look back to our history and what has worked well, as well as look at new ideas for improving our public diplomacy.”
McClellan said Hughes “brings the full trust of the president” and would oversee efforts to achieve results in public diplomacy.
“There is a lot of hate-filled propaganda that is aimed at the United States of America,” McClellan said. He noted that Hughes would seek to counter the spread of myths, expand educational and cultural exchanges, and create a better understanding of the cultures, traditions and histories of others.
McClellan said the announcement was a continuation of efforts to improve public diplomacy since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. He noted the creation of the Office of Global Communications among other actions that sought to amend public diplomacy efforts.
In a statement released March 14, President Bush said Hughes “has the experience, expertise, and judgment” to lead an aggressive effort to communicate U.S. values while respecting the cultures and traditions of other nations.
Bush said in the statement his nomination of Hughes signified his “personal commitment” to spreading the universal principle of human liberty.
McClellan also noted the president was also pleased with the announcement of Dina Powell as deputy secretary of state for public diplomacy, saying she has “already contributed to our diplomatic outreach efforts.”