John Brown is a Senior Fellow at the USC Center on Public Diplomacy. He is currently associated with the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy at Georgetown University, where has taught courses about public diplomacy. A consultant for the Library of Congress's "Open World" exchange program with the Russian Federation, he has written for The Washington Post, The Nation online, TomPaine.com, The Moscow Times, and American Diplomacy.
Brown, who received a Ph.D. in Russian History from Princeton University in 1977, was a member of the U.S. Foreign Service from 1981 until March 10, 2003 and has served in London, Prague, Krakow, Kiev, Belgrade and Moscow.
Brown maintains a daily briefing and review of Pubic Diplomacy related news. The review aggregates all the most recent public diplomacy related news, including current issues in U.S. foreign policy, international broadcasting and media, propaganda, cultural diplomacy, educational exchanges, anti-Americanism, and the reception of American popular culture abroad.
On June 5, 2006, Brown issued an article on TomPaine.com commenting on the US’s failing position as a powerhouse of cultural influence. Titled “America’s Fading Glow,�? Brown notes that the depleting soft power of America hinders the nation’s ability to shape global developments in ways favorable to the national interest. On aggressive foreign policy tactics, Brown states, “our country is seen as the illegitimate sheriff that shoots first and asks questions later. Contrast this to the worldwide sympathy for the U.S. immediately after 9/11, when we were considered the attacked, not the attacker. Due to our unilateralism, we have lost the respect—to be sure, never universal—that we earned as a world leader resisting the totalitarianisms of the twentieth century.�?
Brown details the actions necessary for reforming the US’s crumbling public diplomacy efforts and overall global image. Foremost, Brown declares that “the U.S. must drastically modify its foreign policy from top to bottom so that it is more in tune with the aspirations of the rest of the world. The underpinning of Bush’s foreign policy—the so-called “war on terror�?—must be abandoned, and its macabre manifestations, such as the Guantanamo detainee facility, should be terminated.�?
Publications, Articles, & Commentary
- Bush The New Internationalist? I Don't Think So. by John Brown. CommonDreams.org, June 6, 2006.
- America’s Fading Glow by John Brown. TomPaine.com, June 5, 2006.
- On Waking Up in the Middle of the Night by John Brown. CommonDreams.org, April 23, 2006.
- Of Propaganda and Policy by John Brown. TomPaine.com, March 10, 2006.
- Morality Mission: How Karen Hughes Sees Her Job by John Brown. CommonDreams.org, Nov. 23, 2005.
- Memo to Karen Hughes by John Brown. CommonDreams.org, April 24, 2005.
- They’re Supersizing the Baghdad Embassy. Big Mistake. by John Brown. Washington Post, 2004.
- In Search of Rumsfeld’s 5000 Iraqi Small Businesses by John Brown. The Nation, Nov. 14, 2003.
- The Russian Empire and Soviet Union: A Guide to Manuscripts and Archival Materials in the United States. By Grant, Streven A. and Brown, John H. G.K. Hall, 1981.
PbWinter 15:25, 6 Jun 2006 (PDT)