Detail

Former Diplomacy Experts Foreground Communication as Essential to U.S. Foreign Policy

Byline: Sandrine Berre

Posted: April 27, 2010

Addressing the issues of US foreign policy and diplomacy on Weds, April 6 2010, retired diplomats Pamela and William P. Kiehl came to Wilson to talk about diplomacy and the US foreign policy. In fact, Pamela is a Wilson alumnae and William was a diplomat for many years before retiring.

Addressing the issues of US foreign policy and diplomacy on Weds, April 6 2010, retired diplomats Pamela and William P. Kiehl came to Wilson to talk about diplomacy and the US foreign policy. In fact, Pamela is a Wilson alumnae and William was a diplomat for many years before retiring.

He has also written two books about foreign policy and diplomacy: America’s Dialogue with the World (2006) and Global Intention Local Results: How Colleges Can Create International Communities (2008).

How to define diplomacy nowadays

The discussion started with a definition of diplomacy as a general concept. According to William Kiehl, “tremendous changes happened in the last twenty years concerning diplomacy. The meanings of diplomacy have really changed as well. And what matters today is what happens in the public arena.” Comparing the definitions of traditional and current diplomacy helped the audience grasp what the concept really meant. Today, diplomacy is not only a dialogue between the governments- a definition that has been in place for years- but also a “vehicle that nations use to communicate between the public and the government” says retired diplomat, William Kiehl. It is through this communication that the nations can deal with different issues and apply certain foreign policies.

US Foreign policy or how to transmit the right information at the right time

The foreign policy that William Kiehl tried to apply as a diplomat was essentially to promote a dialogue with the population and the governments as well as transmitting the right information at the right time. The social aspect of foreign policy is an important feature of today's US foreign policy. They also believe that the authenticity of the information has such an important impact on the populations that the slight modifications in the position can change everything. Also, the diplomats are messengers and serve the purpose of delivering the right information to the governments and their populations.

Last Updated: October 14, 2011

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