• Public Diplomacy,  State Department,  Uncategorized

    The Seven Habits of Highly Successful Under Secretaries

    By Brian Carlson The following originally appeared at the Public Diplomacy Council and is republished here with permission.   Tara Sonenshine was confirmed Thursday night by the Senate, and she will probably take office officially early this week.  (She can be sworn in privately by some current official and begin work, even as a more formal ceremony is planned for a few weeks hence.) It is a new beginning down at Foggy Bottom.  Tara becomes only the seventh Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs since the job was created upon the merger of USIA into the Department in 1999. It is a propitious time to consider what habits lead to…

  • Defense Department,  Psychological Struggle,  Public Diplomacy,  State Department

    Best Thing for State Department Since General Marshall

    By Amb. Brian Carlson "The Administration’s intention to put General James Mattis in charge of the U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) is the best thing to happen to the State Department since General George C. Marshall showed up in Foggy Bottom to become Secretary of State. Mattis is one of the "outliers" — one of the few top commanders who understand that America’s enemies will not be defeated in a pitched battle on a field, but rather through the slow change of hearts and minds around dinner tables and tribal councils in countries in conflict. General Mattis used to lead the "Pinnacle" seminars at Joint Forces Command in Norfolk. Pinnacle is…