, the Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, has stepped down
, according to the New York Times and other news sources. In summing up the mixed results of her tenure as the person responsible for America's image, the article declares that "perceptions abroad of the United States are formed mainly by wars, foreign policy, direct contacts and popular culture, not by diplomacy."
The diplomats I know who know Ms. Hughes spoke to me of her good intentions, so I wish her the best. Yet the temporary vacuum created by her departure is all the more reason for Cultures in Harmony to renew its dedication to facilitating the "direct contacts" that certainly do affect our image in other countries.