Sunday, November 7, 2010

Dilution Diplomacy

Run a quick google search on "diplomacy" (go ahead, I'll wait), and you'll see that journalists and bloggers are finding plenty of new applications for the term. Alongside traditional and public diplomacy, we see evidence of "ballet" diplomacy, "cupcake" diplomacy, "wedding" diplomacy, even "designer" dress diplomacy.

For many, it seems, "diplomacy" refers not to international negotiations or even "the art of letting someone have your way," so much as to a friendly gesture between two parties. While some of these diplomatic efforts are targeted to generate goodwill between countries, I don't think anybody expects the Indians to be so dazzled by Michelle Obama's new shoes that they'll rush to blindly sign every form President Obama throws in front of them.

There are limits to all forms of diplomacy.

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