Author Biography

Jonathan Pinkus is a graduate student at the Norman Paterson School of International Affairs at Carleton University and a law student at the University of Ottawa. In 2011, he spent several months as a researcher on issues related to organized crime and the rule of law for the Center on International Cooperation at New York University. Aside from intelligence studies, Jonathan has a major interest in the relationship of organized crime and terrorism.



Subject Area Keywords

Chemical weapons, Homeland security, Intelligence analysis, Iraq, Middle East, Public diplomacy


This article argues that the executive branches of governments will need to change the way that they employ intelligence for public diplomacy in the context of military action. Intelligence assessments that have been “politicized” through distortion and/or omission have led to poor decision-making and a decline in public trust. These propositions are demonstrated using the American and British public diplomacy that preceded the 2003 invasion of Iraq as a case study. This case is then compared to a second case study, the American and British public appeals for a strike on Syria following the 2013 Ghouta chemical attack. The article concludes by reflecting on what changes are still needed and how the strategy of using intelligence for public diplomacy is likely to evolve in the future.