May 28, 2009

Chump Change - GWOT Strategic PSYOP

For the attention of the microscopically small brethren and sistren of folks interested, yesterday afternoon GAO released a critique of U.S. Public Diplomacy which touched upon the main GWOT Strategic PSYOP (leaving OGA out of it, as it should be).

U.S. Public Diplomacy: Key Issues for Congressional Oversight. GAO-09-679SP, May 27 [43 page pdf]

The national communications strategy identifies the principal mechanism for the coordination of U.S. government strategic communication activities, namely the Policy Coordinating Committee (PCC) on Public Diplomacy and Strategic Communication led by State’s Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, but does not address which agencies, departments, and offices will implement the strategy and their roles and responsibilities. The lack of guidance on DOD’s and State’s respective roles and responsibilities is of particular concern. Both departments have made marginalizing extremism—one of the three national communication goals—their top communications priority and are undertaking activities in this area. While State has been formally designated as the lead for all U.S. government strategic communications, DOD has more resources than State to apply to the strategic communications goal of marginalizing extremism. In 2006, DOD established the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Support to Public Diplomacy to support and coordinate public diplomacy efforts, and serve as the lead for developing policy within DOD on countering ideological support for terrorism. DOD officials said this office was disbanded in early 2009 and it is unclear what existing or new mechanisms, if any, will conduct its functions. Further, despite internal planning initiatives that began in 2006, DOD has not defined the roles, responsibilities, and relationships of its internal military capabilities that support strategic communications, such as public affairs, information operations, and defense support for public diplomacy.

No comments: