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Foreign Service

The "Lavender Scare": Homosexuals at the State Department

ADST | Posted 09.22.2015 | Gay Voices

Investigating homosexuality became a core function of the Department's Office of Security, which ferreted out more people for homosexuality than for being a Communist.

Crossing Continents: How to Move a Marriage

Donna Gorman | Posted 05.27.2015 | Weddings
Donna Gorman

"Never take a damaged marriage overseas," they told me at the spouse orientation the year my husband joined the Diplomatic Security Service. Diplomatic Security, or DSS, is a little-known branch of the State Department that is responsible, as the name suggests, for keeping diplomats and other Americans safe overseas.

'Secrets of State' A Conversation with Matthew Palmer

Mark Rubinstein | Posted 05.27.2015 | Books
Mark Rubinstein

Matthew Palmer is a 24-year veteran of the U.S. Foreign Service. Having been at ground zero for many pressing global issues from Kosovo to Africa, he has extensive knowledge of international crises.

The Evil and the Good

Donna Gorman | Posted 04.07.2015 | Religion
Donna Gorman

It's hard to know what to say in the face of such senseless barbarism as the world witnessed this week, when ISIS released their video showing the murder of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh.

Ban the Bundlers!

Charles Kolb | Posted 09.15.2014 | Politics
Charles Kolb

An ambassador is neither a social secretary nor a socialite. It is, quite frankly, embarrassing that so many of our key diplomatic positions are now considered commodities for sale to the highest bidder or bundler.

Mapping Out Path in Foreign Service (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 07.13.2014 | Politics
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of Conversations with Nicholas Kralev, Philip Reeker, former ambassador to Macedonia and incoming consul-general in Milan, talks about the wide variety of tasks professional diplomats perform, and creating a successful Foreign Service career.

U.S. Diplomats' Influence in Washington (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 07.06.2014 | World
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of Conversations with Nicholas Kralev, we discuss the role career diplomats play in making U.S. foreign policy, and why presidents tend to distrust the Foreign Service.

15 Signs You Served In The Peace Corps..In GIFs!

The Huffington Post | Melissa McGlensey | Posted 04.26.2014 | Impact

Making the choice to join the Peace Corps, or any other form of prolonged foreign volunteering, is a tough one. Thankfully, thousands of people make t...

Running the World's Largest Embassy (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 06.16.2014 | Politics
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev," the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Stephen Beecroft, talks about the challenges for U.S. diplomacy in the country amid continuing violence and political dysfunction.

Reconciling Internet Freedom and Government Snooping (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 06.08.2014 | Technology
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev," Alec Ross, former senior adviser for innovation at the State Department, talks about the role of modern technology in achieving diplomatic objectives, empowering citizens around the world, and reconciling Internet freedom with U.S. government surveillance.

Random Acts of Kindness

Fran Moreland Johns | Posted 05.27.2014 | Good News
Fran Moreland Johns

One particularly gray day, the kind of day writers have when their brains fog over and their vocabularies vanish, I had an email from the irrepressibl...

Does Foreign Aid Help U.S. Security? (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 05.26.2014 | Politics
Nicholas Kralev

Rajiv Shah, administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), talks about how $33 billion in U.S. foreign aid contributes to American security.

Once Expelled, Gay Diplomat Thrives in Foreign Service (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 02.08.2014 | Gay Voices
Nicholas Kralev

Jan Krc tells his story and talks about the recent advances for LGBT officers, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's now-famous gay rights speech in Geneva in 2011, and about being a foreign-born U.S. diplomat.

Do Politicians Make Good Diplomats? (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev," meet the Canadian ambassador to the United States, Gary Doer, a longtime politician who was most recently premier of the province of Manitoba.

From the Peanut Fields of Alabama to the Foreign Service (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 01.23.2014 | World
Nicholas Kralev

On this week's episode of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev," Jimmy Mauldin, a Foreign Service officer currently serving in India, talks about his...

Can Diplomacy Be Taught? (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 12.31.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

Meet the woman who is trying to change the State Department's decades-long aversion to formal training: Ambassador Nancy McEldowney, director of the Foreign Service Institute.

The Royal Family's Role in British Diplomacy (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 12.09.2013 | Media
Nicholas Kralev

The involvement of Britain's royal family in diplomacy "gives us extra ability to make a difference in certain areas," Sir Peter Westmacott, the British ambassador to Washington, says.

Behind the Scenes of Running an Embassy (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 12.02.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

How do you create a playbook for performing basic administrative functions around the world? How do you establish common procedures when every host country has its own rules? Kerry O'Connor, the State Department's innovation catalyst, answers these questions.

What Soldiers Can Learn From Diplomats in War Zones (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 11.25.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

The U.S. military is "not very adept" at understanding foreign cultures and has relied on the Foreign Service to provide those skills in war zones says Lt. Gen. Robert Caslen, superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Do U.S. Sanctions Help or Hurt Diplomacy? (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 11.17.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

The recent Iranian presidential election showed that U.S. and international sanctions against Iran are working, Ambassador Daniel Fried, the U.S. global sanctions coordinator, says on this week's episode of "Conversations with Nicholas Kralev."

Embassy (In)Security -- A Diplomatic SOS

Amb. Marc Ginsberg | Posted 10.08.2013 | World
Amb. Marc Ginsberg

Al Zawahri's directive is -- by assessments derived from members of Congress briefed on the threat -- the most ominous and credible threat against U.S. interests in the Middle East since 9/11.

Indian Envoy: Ties With Pakistan 'Filled with Promise' (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 09.16.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

Thorny issues like the future of the disputed territory of Kashmir should be "resolved peacefully, not through militancy directed at our people from Pakistan," Rao adds.

Is Diplomacy a Real Profession? (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 09.09.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

The U.S. government doesn't always value diplomacy -- especially in peacetime -- as much as defense and intelligence, and it doesn't invest suffic...

364 Days Until My War in Iraq is Over

Donna Gorman | Posted 09.03.2013 | Parents
Donna Gorman

Our youngest, 5-year-old Ainsley, snuck into our bedroom last night, threw her arms around her daddy and said, "I don't want you to die in Baghdad, daddy."

20,000 Want to Be U.S. Diplomats Each Year (VIDEO)

Nicholas Kralev | Posted 09.02.2013 | World
Nicholas Kralev

More than 20,000 Americans apply to become diplomats every year, but only a few hundred make it through the difficult written and oral exams, Ambass...