In recent decades, many U.S. embassies have become virtual fortresses. The difficulties diplomats have in mingling freely in other countries complicates their task of gleaning information and promoting the U.S. message.
Ambassador Chris Stevens and four other Americans died Tuesday after a mob attacked the U.S. embassy in Benghazi, Libya in protest of a film that mocks Islam. In Egypt, protesters stormed the U.S. embassy in Cairo. These attacks raise concerns about U.S. policy in the region.
As tensions mount between China and several neighboring countries over control in the Asia-Pacific region, U.S. Sen. James Webb talks with NPR's Neal Conan about the role the United States can and should play in the growing disputes in the South China Sea.
The death of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans at the hands of extremists there quickly became an issue in the 2012 presidential race. Republican Mitt Romney accused the administration of making an "apology for America's values," and of sending "mixed messages to the world."
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