Late Lunch

We were running our press shop at the U.S. Embassy, riding on cascades of resources finagled by Charles Wick of USIA, and Madrid’s good fortune of being rid of a dictatorship (1975) and well on its way to catching up with other Western European democracies. Washington pushed resources at us, and we knew better than to question these gifts.

Wick had spawned a clunky communication system, WORLDNET (always spelled out in caps, although they never explained why.) It allowed for one-way video on rented satellite time ($10,000 per hour) and gave live interviews for very select audiences overseas.

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US/Russia Relations: Too Disappointing

President Obama and President Putin Not long ago I wrote here about the odd language of American official ‘diplomatic disappointment’ in the context of US/China relations and the Edward Snowden business.

Now President Obama has called off his scheduled bilateral meeting with President Putin in Moscow before the G20 gathering in St. Petersburg. He has publicly expressed his own ‘disappointment’ that Russia gave Snowden temporary asylum. Continue reading US/Russia Relations: Too Disappointing

The Queen’s 1983 Nuclear War Speech That Never Was

Nuclear Bomb Here’s an interesting speechwriting challenge. Draft a speech for a Head of State to deliver to the nation as a nuclear war breaks out. What to say? What on earth or even in space is the right tone on such a Dr. Strangelove occasion?

Government documents from 1983 newly released by the UK National Archives include words for a speech to the nation that might be given by HM The Queen as a nuclear war between NATO and the Warsaw Pact started. Continue reading The Queen’s 1983 Nuclear War Speech That Never Was