The Cold War and the United States Information Agency: American Propaganda and Public Diplomacy, 1945–1989

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-11-16
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Published at a time when the U.S. government's public diplomacy is in crisis, this book provides an exhaustive account of how it used to be done. The United States Information Agency was created in 1953 to "tell America's story to the world" and, by engaging with the world through international information, broadcasting, culture and exchange programs, became an essential element of American foreign policy during the Cold War. Based on newly declassified archives and more than 100 interviews with veterans of public diplomacy, from the Truman administration to the fall of the Berlin Wall, Nicholas J. Cull relates both the achievements and the endemic flaws of American public diplomacy in this period. Major topics include the process by which the Truman and Eisenhower administrations built a massive overseas propaganda operation; the struggle of the Voice of America radio to base its output on journalistic truth; the challenge of presenting Civil Rights, the Vietnam War, and Watergate to the world; and the climactic confrontation with the Soviet Union in the 1980s. This study offers remarkable and new insights into the Cold War era.

Author Biography

Nicholas J. Cull is professor of public diplomacy at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Southern California. He is the author of Selling War: The British Propaganda Campaign against American Neutrality in World War II and the co-editor (with David Culbert and David Welch) of Propaganda and Mass Persuasion: A Historical Encyclopedia, 1500 to the Present. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, a member of the Public Diplomacy Council, and President of the International Association for Media and History.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrationsp. xi
Prefacep. xiii
Abbreviationsp. xxiii
Prologue: The Foundations of U.S. Information Overseasp. 1
Getting the Sheep to Speak: The Truman Years, 1945-53p. 22
Surviving the Peace: Bill Benton Lays the Foundations, 1945-47p. 23
Waging Cold War: George V. Allen Holds the Fort, 1947-49p. 37
The Campaign of Truth: Edward Barrett Makes Progress, 1950-51p. 51
Things Left Undone: The Independence Debate, 1950-53p. 67
Mobilizing ôthe P-Factorö: Eisenhower and the Birth of the USIA, 1953-56p. 81
The Ordeal: The McCarthy Crisis and the Creation of the USIA, January-July, 1953p. 82
Streibert Takes Charge: The Structure of the USIA in 1953p. 96
From ôAtoms for Peaceö to ôPeopleÆs Capitalismö: The USIAÆs Output, 1954-56p. 104
The USIA and Cold War Geopolitics: 1954-56p. 120
In the Shadow of Sputnik: The Second Eisenhower Administration, 1957-61p. 124
öEgghead with Troublesö: Arthur Larson and the USIA in 1957p. 125
Breaking the ôMilwaukee Effectö: The Return of George V. Menp. 149
Crusading with Culture: The Cultural Program in the U.S.S.R., 1958-60p. 161
AllenÆs USIA to January 1961: The VOA Charter and the Sprague Committeep. 171
Inventing Truth: The Kennedy Administration, 1961-63p. 189
Facing Khrushchev: MurrowÆs USIA to December 1961p. 191
Representing America in 1962: USIA Film and Civil Rightsp. 206
The Cuban Missile Crisisp. 214
From Vietnam to Dallasp. 218
Maintaining Confidence: The Early Johnson Years, 1963-65p. 227
Zenith: The USIA and the Kennedy Assassination, November; 1963-August 1965p. 228
Carl Rowan: Civil Rights and Cold War Propagandap. 233
The USIA in the Developing World: From the Indonesian Crisis to the Dominican Intervention, 1964-65p. 237
The Road to JUSPAO: The USIA in Vietnam to July 1965p. 245
öMy Radio Stationö: The Johnson Administration, 1965-69p. 255
öPublic Diplomacyö and a Public Diplomat: Leonard Marks at the USIAp. 256
JUSPAO at Work: The USIA in Vietnam, August 1965-68p. 267
Projecting the Great Societyp. 278
Nadir: The USIA, World Opinion, and the Crisis of the Late 1960sp. 285
Surviving Detente: The Nixon Years, 1969-74p. 293
The True Believer: Frank Shakespeare and the USIA, 1969-70p. 294
NixonÆs Vietnam, 1969-74p. 306
Fighting for Control: ShakespeareÆs Struggle for Autonomy, 1971-72p. 312
Watergate and James Keogh: January 1973-August 1974p. 321
A New Beginning: The Ford Administration, 1974-77p. 333
Navigating the Rapids, 1974-75p. 334
The Stanton Commission, 1974-75p. 340
The End in Vietnam and the VOA Charter, 1975-76p. 346
Rehumanizing America: The Bicentennial, 1976p. 351
From the ôTwo-Wayö Mandate to the Second Cold War: The Carter Administration, 1977-81p. 360
Beyond Stanton: Taming the VOA and Creating the ICA, 1977-78p. 361
John ReinhardtÆs Good Fight: CarterÆs Foreign Policy to December 1978p. 374
Progress and Peril: The ICA in 1979p. 382
Valley of die Shadow: Iran and Afghanistan, 1979-81p. 386
öProject Truthö: The First Reagan Administration, 1981-84p. 399
The Arrival of Charles Z.Wickp. 400
The Crisis at the Voice of America, 1981-82p. 412
From ôProject Democracyö to WORLDNET: Confronting Communism in 1983p. 421
Wick under Fire: The USIA in 1984p. 435
Showdown: The Second Reagan Administration, 1985-89p. 442
Facing Gorbachev, 1985p. 443
The Road to Reykjavik, 1986p. 453
In the Shadow of Iran-Contra, 1987p. 461
The Home Stretch, 1988-89p. 474
Epilogue: Victory and the Strange Death of the USIA, 1989-99p. 482
Conclusion: Trajectories, Maps, and Lessons from the Past of U.S. Public Diplomacyp. 486
Five Trajectoriesp. 486
Three Mapsp. 493
Seven Lessonsp. 496
Selected Bibliographyp. 505
Indexp. 9
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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