Part 1: An American Music Producer in Damascus

The below guest blog post is authored by Brian Unger, an American musician and music producer who led the 2010 Music Exchange Program in Damascus, Syria.  This is the first of a series of posts by Mr. Unger that explores his experience in Syria. As the 757 touched down on the runway in Syria, the … Continue reading Part 1: An American Music Producer in Damascus

Citizen Diplomacy & The Power of People-to-People Exchanges

Last week, representatives from 39 states and 42 countries attended the U.S. Summit for Global Citizen Diplomacy. The event marked the first time in 50 years that public and private leaders gathered to discuss “citizen diplomacy”– the efforts of everyday citizens to engage with the world through people-to-people exchanges. More than 500 people attended the … Continue reading Citizen Diplomacy & The Power of People-to-People Exchanges

Stay Connected with Open Hands

Did you know that the Open Hands Initiative is on Facebook and Twitter? Meet us there to stay up-to-date on the organization’s latest news and events. Start a conversation or join the dialogue. You can also check out the news page and archives to see the Open Hands Initiative featured in the media.

Diplomacy, Literally Speaking

While the 21st century has brought to the world a new era of interconnectedness and openness, what we are learning is that barriers to greater understanding and trust remain. Language, culture, religion, and political differences are just a few of the forces that continue to divide us, within countries and across borders. We can’t advertise … Continue reading Diplomacy, Literally Speaking

Extending Our Hands

“We will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.” – US President Barack Obama, Cairo 2009 Like many people around the world, I was inspired by President Obama’s landmark speech in Cairo, Egypt. That speech marked the beginning of a long-overdue dialogue between the United States and the people of the … Continue reading Extending Our Hands