Yet again Serbia's image -- and much of its political and economic future -- is being decided vividly in headlines in the Western press. For example, the hugely influential and (usually) highly credible Washington Post just ran an editorial headlined, "Serbia's Thugs".
As if the headline is not bad enough, the editorial is completely one-sided and simple-minded, basically saying Serbs Yet Again Suck, but not giving any reasons why or background into how the US government may have (heartily) contributed to the problems.
My question is, why are almost no Serbs or Friends of Serbs posting comments or editorial replies on the vast majority of these stories??? Almost all the major US, UK and Canadian press now allow online readers to post comments. You may have to register to do so, but it's free. It's your chance to fight a the PR battle, and no one on the Serb side seems to be taking advantage of it - AT ALL! It's like an entire nation is laying down and saying, "Oh poor me, what nasty things they are saying about me again, I am far too victimized to defend myself at the moment."
A word of advice - if you do decide to fight the good fight and bring the other side (or at least more relevant information) to these media, then to be taken as a credible writer, you must write in a manner that Western readers find, well, credible.
That means no polemics. No emotion. No long rants. Calm-sounding facts and a few bullet points poking a hole in the editorial's argument will be 1,000 times more powerful. You are not a poor victim, you are an intellectual politely explaining facts and background to a not-so-bright student.
You have to sound like a WASP (white anglo saxon protestant). I know it's not real, but this is a media battle just as real as any war with guns or swords. In this case, your wording and your tone when writing are your guns and armor. Put them on as part of your prep for battle.
OK, so who should do this? Everyone. Sheer numbers of comments and commentors count - makes it seem like a tidal wave of public opinion against the editorial and believe me, editors read these things and take note. But, most especially diplomatic officials - you guys were just recalled from DC, what elsedo you have to do? The former Serbian ambassador to the US and staff should be surfing their brains out for the next few days and publicly commenting like crazy. In a waspy, waspy way.