Starting tomorrow I’ll fly to Kabul for an embedded mission in Afghanistan with US NATO. Thanks to the US Embassy in Rome I have been selected by NATO for a press tour as a blogger, not belonging to any media organization. It is the first time, as I know, for an Italian blogger to do that. Cool, isn’t it?
Anyway, today I had a very interesting briefing day here in Bruxelles at NATO HQ. We (me and 5 other guys from Germany, Cech Rep., Hungary, Slovakia and Polony) had the chance to be informed about NATO organization and NATO operations in Afghanistan and to discuss this topic with many officials, military and diplomats, including the US Ambassador at NATO. I also asked a couple of question to Mr. Ivo Daalder (the Ambassador) about Twitter and social media for diplomacy and I told us that he really enjoy Twitter. This meeting was on the record so I can quote him as follows:
I tweet personally, I spend a lot of time. I think it is an extraordinary way to follow news, it is a fantastic media.
The question is how do we use responsably to spread message out.
This is future, to reach a broader audience, integrated with old media, big challenge
I enjoy it
We had also a very engaging conversation about geopolitics, Afghanistan after 2014, Pakistan link with Afghanistan and more. I really appreciated what the US NATO organized today to learn about what’s going on in Afghanistan today to be ready for our mission on the field.
I cannot write anything about cities, dates and itineraries in advance for a security reason but I can tell that we are going to have 5 full days in Afghanistan visiting a PRT, being a tourist (really!) in another famous place and meeting local people, diplomats and military. It is going to be challenging for many point of views. I should wear a helmet and vest almost all the time. The temperature should be between 20 and 35 celsius during next days.
On the field they told me I should have a internet connection to blog and twit during the evening and night but I am not 100% sure I’ll be able to do that. If You are able to read Italian You’ll find much more informations in my Italian blog and Twitter account. I’ll try to blog and twit in english too but it will not be my first priority.
I know I could be in a dangerous situation but I am confident everything will be all right and that we will have the chance to chat and discuss this mission on Twitter and Facebook when I’ll come back in july.