NINE LIVES: A Foreign Service Odyssey

Allen C. Hansen
Vellum, 2007
452 Pages, 19 Illustrations
ISBN 978-0-9794488-6-7 Paperback

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About the Author

Allen C. Hansen was a USIA Foreign Service officer 1954 to 1987 in Washington, D.C. and abroad in Venezuela, Mexico, British Guiana (now Guyana), Spain, Uruguay, Bolivia, Peru, the Dominican Republic, and Pakistan. He is the author of USIA, Public Diplomacy in the Computer Age, the second edition of which was published in 1989. This is his fifth book.

About the book

This book depicts the excitement, frustrations, satisfactions—and sometimes glamour—of a career in the Foreign Service of the United States Information Agency (USIA). It describes how the U.S. government agency responsible for what is now called “public diplomacy” conducted its varied media, cultural, and educational exchange programs in nine countries during the Cold War.

The author, a 32-year veteran of USIA, demonstrates how USIA operated at its headquarters in Washington and abroad, where it was known as the U.S. Information Service (USIS). When at overseas posts he describes both American and local personnel; some of USIA’s achievements and, at times, the lack thereof; his professional relationships with embassy colleagues of the Department of State and other agencies; and addresses such unusual events as an earthquake in Mexico, a murder in Montevideo, coups d’état in Venezuela and Bolivia, and a civil war in the Dominican Republic.

This is a book in the ADST Memoirs and Occasional Papers Series.

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