The US Ambassador to the UK visited Gates Cambridge Scholars last week and faced questions on issues ranging from overseas aid to Iraq to Ukraine.
The US Ambassador to the UK visited Gates Cambridge Scholars last week and faced questions about a range of issues from overseas aid to Iraq, US Middle East policy, gender diversity, Ukraine and immigration controls.
Ambassador Matthew Barzun told Gates Cambridge Scholars from countries ranging from Pakistan, Palestine and the US to Ukraine and Zimbabwe that many of the problems of the future could not be solved by military means alone and would require greater diplomatic endeavour.
He added that diplomacy was about listening rather than trying to win an argument. “No-one likes losing an argument,” he said. It was better to leave people feeling their point of view had been listened to. He added that more emphasis needed to be put on public diplomacy. He said this was too often seen as weak and about soft power compared with the traditional view of diplomacy being conducted behind closed doors.
Ambassador Barzun also spoke about his own career which has seen him move from being a business executive for CNET Networks to being Ambassador to Sweden to campaigning for President Obama’s re-election.