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Filming Manhole Covers in Chile

February 2020

by Susan Clyde

American speaker programs were long a staple of US Information Agency (USIA) programs overseas. Not all went as planned.

Photo

November 2018

Dr. Khaled al-Asaad, a Syrian archaeologist and the head of antiquities for the ancient city of Palmyra was publicly beheaded by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in 2015. This 2002 picture shows al-Asaad in front of a first century sarcophagus from Palmyra. Photograph: Marc Deville/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images.

Moved by the international outcry over ISIS destruction in Iraq and Syria, and with the Syrian state in disarray, the Congress in 2016 enacted emergency legislation to block the importation of illegally acquired Syrian antiquities to the United States. The State Department also began to take a serious interest in the relationship between terrorism and the destruction and trafficking of antiquities.

Diplomacy as Risk Management

April 2018

Remarks to the Watson Institute of International and Public Affairs
by Ambassador Chas W. Freeman, Jr. (USFS, Ret.)

Jazz Ambassadors

April 2018

The United Nations designates April 30 as International Jazz Day in order to highlight jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the globe. The U.S. has used jazz in diplomacy since the 1950s, when the U.S. Information Agency created the Jazz Ambassadors program to send leading American Jazz musicians such as Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, and Duke Ellington to perform overseas. An exhibit commemorating this program, created by Meridian International Center, is now on view at the U.S. Diplomacy Center in Washington, DC.