Thursday, May 21, 2009

We are being outcommunicated in Pakistan, Afghanistan: Clinton

Washington, May 21 (IANS) The United States is losing the propaganda
war in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
has told lawmakers saying it was something that must be reversed.We
are being out-communicated by the Taliban and Al Qaeda. That is
absolutely unacceptable,' she told the Senate Appropriations
Subcommittee Wednesday.

Militants broadcasting from radio equipment on the backs of pickup
trucks are threatening and intimidating people and spreading what she
called 'a steady diet of the worst kind of disinformation'.

Admitting that the extremists have been more effective than the US
when it comes to strategic communications, she said the Obama
administration is revamping its communications strategy - looking at
new ways to directly reach people in areas where militants are active
- including on their cell phones.

The US must not lose the 'information war' in the region, and do a
much better job at communicating its values and ideals to Afghans and

Clinton is seeking $48.6 billion in State Department funding for 2010,
a seven percent increase over 2009 funding levels. The State
Department will work side-by-side with the Defence Department to
promote US interests and security in the region, she said.

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