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The Virtues of Quiet Diplomacy

The Virtues of Quiet Diplomacy

(p.272) 13 The Virtues of Quiet Diplomacy
Fourteen Points for the Twenty-First Century
John BewCharlie Laderman
University Press of Kentucky

This chapter discusses the benefits of quiet diplomacy in comparison to open diplomacy, focusing on the highest levels of the international system. It examines the different types of diplomacy and provides historical examples. The authors argue that although secret diplomacy is never ideal, it is sometimes necessary for the safe resolution of international crises. Further, open diplomacy—something Woodrow Wilson explicitly demanded in his Fourteen Points—has certain downsides that must be acknowledged, especially in the era of cyberhacking and mass manipulation of public opinion. The chapter concludes by pointing out that there must be a balance between openness and secrecy, as certain negotiations must remain confidential to ensure international security.

Keywords:   Wilsonianism, open diplomacy, negotiations, quiet diplomacy, confidentiality, security, Wikileaks

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