A reflective group blog by some of the students on The New Diplomacy module at London Metropolitan University
Sunday, 16 January 2011
My understanding of diplomacy today
The simplest way to absorb daily information is to believe in everything that media makes public. However, the study of new diplomacy reveals hidden, complex, mysterious relations of political activity, certainly, diplomacy plays a crucial role. The more you study diplomatic art, the more suspicious world seems to be. This perhaps is the most important character making diplomacy more than the prestigious, intellectual political art or practice of conducting international relations, as in negotiating alliances, treaties, and agreements etc., but, at the same time, the dangerous, sceptical, self-centric, manipulative ever evolving arena, which requires special tact and skill in dealing with people. More than ever before, the century of globalisation holds new challenges which make diplomatic missions go beyond its limits, involving governmental and non-governmental activities of wide concerns. Nevertheless, public opinion building seems to be crucial succeeding in the missions across the globe, which suggests that society is an important player whichever way, in action or in silence, it will affect governmental policy - decision making.
All in all, diplomacy is very interesting, significantly powerful art of politics which affects us all unconsciously. Despite the hidden, dark channels of diplomatic practises (eg. propaganda, secrecy, spying, self-centric, often immoral activities ect.), I hope, that the future diplomacy will remain and strengthen its major aim - negotiating and cooperating for its own people; guaranteeing social, economic, environmental developments for more peaceful, equal, trustworthy, hatless world with less disease of nationalism, competition and secrecy. No doubt, that in the process of learning more about diplomacy we can increase our consciousness concerning international relations, peace and conflicts, governmental missions etc., we can also increase our respect towards diplomats by recognition of their complex and skilful role. However, in some cases, it leads to have a lack of respect concerning the fact that many of diplomatic missions are not fallowing ethical grounds. For this reason, NGOs might be more favourable or alternative diplomats in many ways, concerning the fact that their goal is 'humane', international, less political, profitable and nationalistic, which makes a good sense.
Finally, diplomacy is evolving process, looking back in history we can see many differences in its agenda and practises adopted to changing environment (geographic, social, political, economic, scientific, cultural etc.). However, at the same time, diplomacy kept its origins equal to its very beginning. It is still a process of maturity; teaching to cooperate, listen, understand, appreciate, tolerate, search for compromises, learn to negotiate in mature manner leaving egos behind, and very importantly, opening for consciousness and recognition of others, differences, rights, etc., Indeed, it is a wise process which requires wise, mature individuals, I would compare it with a process of growing old.
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