Public diplomacy gets a satirical spin with dueling open letters for Lebanon’s Independence Day.
Lebanese flags during a military parade to mark the 70th anniversary of Lebanon Independence Day, in Beirut, Lebanon, 22 November 2013. EPA/NABIL MOUNZER
A mock diplomatic spat went viral after a popular Lebanese satirist lampooned an open letter by the British Ambassador to Lebanon.
British Ambassador to Lebanon Tom Fletcher wrote the letter to mark the 70th anniversary of the Lebanese republic. He praised Lebanon’s accomplishments, lamented its political shortcomings, and offered what he called “some unsolicited advice”.
Though many took Fletcher’s letter as an earnest expression of concern and hope for Lebanon, others responded defensively, calling the tone demeaning.