A large portion of PD is about branding or what kind of messages we send out about ourselves. Hayden linked PD to the idea of “soft power” or “affecting others to obtain the outcomes you want” (6). One of the three major characteristics of soft power as Hayden describes it is the “attractiveness” of an actors culture and institutions” (6).
This article from the Huffington post http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mario-machado/service-as-diplomacy-the _b_3937024.html?utm_source=Daily+Media+Digest&utm_campaign=8907ea41ec-Media_Digest_9_23_13&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_e87ea75dce-8907ea41ec-215172549 written by Mario Machado highlights some of images that the US tends to portray of itself, in particular those that come from the military and of the Peace Corps. Unfortunately, as Machado describes, the most powerful and lasting image of the two is that of the US military. The US as it is pictured abroad is not necessarily seen a peaceful, despite the efforts of the Peace Corps or other organizations who offer humanitarian aid to developing nations.
To a large extent, both the Peace Corps and the military are the face of US around the world, and all to often that face or image is conflicting. As Machado explains the “first function of the Peace Corpse Volunteers is that of cultural ambassadors.” Despite the Peace Corps efforts, there is limit to what can be done to improve the US’ image abroad, particularly because of our tendency to get involved militarily.
If the US wants to make the Peace Corp mandate something people abroad associates more with the US ( ie 1.Help meet the needs of developing nations for trained personnel 2) Provide a better understanding of Americans on the behalf of other peoples, and 3) Provide a better understanding of other peoples on the behalf of Americans ), then the US should make an effort to pursue and promote values that don’t necessitate military force. Or at the very least the US should recognize what kind of influence certain perceptions of the US have abroad and whether or not it undermines the US’s PD efforts.