The U.S. State Department has rolled out Hi, a slick, full-color “lifestyle” magazine in Arabic targeted at 18- to 35-year-olds in a dozen Arab countries. “We’re emphasizing the positive things,” said a consulting editor. And a State Department rep said Hi is “in a very subtle way, a vehicle for American values.” The Indian Express responded: “Bludgeoning Arab youth with giant baseball bats and making them sing ‘Yankee Doodle’ would be more subtle.” The first issue features American colleges, yoga and an Arab-American actor, but has nothing on the invasion of Iraq, terrorism or other irksome issues. The apparent obliviousness of Hi’s editors and State Department bosses to the supposed wants or needs of the magazine’s target audience might be seen as an example of why people hate America. Hmmm.
– from Wired