Russian Public Diplomacy Offensive

by Steven R. Corman

John Brown sent me a link from russiaprofile.org that he labeled “important.” The article describes a Russian public diplomacy effort that comes with an eyebrow-raising budget. Quoth the article:

As Peter Finn describes it, “The Kremlin is pumping tens of millions of dollars into various forms of public diplomacy. They include new media ventures to target international audiences; foundations to promote Russian language and culture around the world; conferences to charm Western opinion-makers; and nongovernmental organizations that are setting up shop in Western capitals to scrutinize the failings of Western democracy.”

The description of the program is followed by analysis from seven experts. Though they all have different takes, if you squint while reading you can discern a plurality opinion the offensive is somewhere between unnecessary, ill-advised, and overblown.