Past Event

Influence and American Power

Improving U.S. Relations with the Public in the Muslim World

12:00 AM - 11:59 PM EDT

July 26, 2005

Please join the Center for American Progress for a panel discussion on:

Influence and American Power
Improving U.S. Relations with the Public in the Muslim World

The spread of extreme anti-American sentiment in Muslim-majority countries has become a key national security problem for the United States. Since the war in Iraq, negative attitudes towards the United States across the world have increased dramatically. This hostility is an important factor in recruitment by terrorist networks with a global reach like Al Qaeda. The Center for American Progress brings together three experts who have worked on initiatives to develop practical strategies for improving the image of the United States in Muslim-majority countries.

• Transcript: Full text (PDF)


Jodie T. Allen is the Senior Editor at the Pew Research Center. She joined the Pew Center from U.S. News & World Report where she was a Managing Editor and the Business Editor and also wrote a bi-weekly column on the political economy. She came to U.S. News from Slate Magazine, where she was the Washington bureau chief. Before joining Slate, she was the Editor of Outlook, the Sunday commentary section of the Washington Post. She has also been an editorial writer and business columnist with the Post. Previously she held positions in government, including Dep. Asst. Sec. of Labor for Policy, as well as in private organizations including Chrysler, Mathematica, the Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution.

Dr. Craig Charney is the President of Charney Research and has two decades of experience as a pollster and political scientist, along with a Ph.D. in comparative politics from Yale University and several scholarly and journalistic publications. Dr. Charney co-authored A New Beginning: Strategies for a More Fruitful Dialogue with the Muslim World, a recent Council of Foreign Relations report based on opinion research he conducted in Egypt, Indonesia, and Morocco.

Duncan MacInnes is the Director of Foreign Press Centers and the Muslim Outreach Coordinator for the Bureau of Public Affairs. He manages the Department of State’s three Foreign Press Centers located in Washington, New York, and Los Angeles. These centers promote depth, accuracy, and balance of foreign reporting from the U.S. by providing foreign media direct access to authoritative sources of information. In addition to his media portfolio, he coordinates Arab and Muslim Outreach activities for the Bureau of Public Affairs. Mr. MacInnes joined the Foreign Service in 1984, and served in Qatar, Yemen, Sri Lanka, Jerusalem and Australia. From 2002 to 2004, he served as the Director of Press and Public Diplomacy for the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, followed by a year as Senior Advisor on Iraq Public Diplomacy. In 2004, he received the Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Public Diplomacy.

Mike McCurry is Chairman of Grassroots Enterprise where he sets the strategic direction of the company. McCurry served in the White House as Press Secretary to President Bill Clinton (1995-1998). He also served as spokesman for the Department of State (1993-1995) and Director of Communications for the Democratic National Committee (1988-1990). McCurry has held leadership roles in several national campaigns, including national Press Secretary for the vice presidential campaign of Senator Lloyd M. Bentsen (1988), and spokesman and political strategist in the presidential campaigns of Senator John Glenn (1984), Governor Bruce Babbitt (1988) and Senator Bob Kerrey (1992). McCurry is a Principal of Public Strategies Group, LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based public affairs and strategic communications consulting firm, where he has practiced since leaving the White House. He also serves on boards or advisory councils for Share Our Strength, the Center for International Private Enterprise, the Council for Excellence in Government, the Junior Statesmen Foundation, the Wesley Theological Seminary, and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University. McCurry received his Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University in 1976 and a Master of Arts from Georgetown University in 1985.