The Cable

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Meet the U.S. Ambassador to Russia, Michael McFaul

New U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul stars in this high production value YouTube video as part of his self-introduction to the Russia people. His new publicity effort also includes a new Twitter feed @McFaul, where he tweets in Russian and English. Here’s a transcript of his remarks in the video, delivered in English with ...

New U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul stars in this high production value YouTube video as part of his self-introduction to the Russia people. His new publicity effort also includes a new Twitter feed @McFaul, where he tweets in Russian and English.

Here's a transcript of his remarks in the video, delivered in English with Russian subtitles, after the jump:

New U.S. Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul stars in this high production value YouTube video as part of his self-introduction to the Russia people. His new publicity effort also includes a new Twitter feed @McFaul, where he tweets in Russian and English.

Here’s a transcript of his remarks in the video, delivered in English with Russian subtitles, after the jump:

My name is Michael McFaul. I’m very excited to be returning to your great country. I grew up here, in the state of Montana, or ‘the regions’ as you would say in Russia. But even as a boy in Montana I developed an interest in U.S.-Soviet relations, and in particular, in the simple idea that more direct communication with the Soviets could make us and the world more secure.

Because of this belief, my first trip abroad was to the U.S.S.R. I studied abroad at Leningrad State University and at Moscow State University, and later I worked at the Moscow Carnegie Center. As President Obama’s representative in Russia, I believe my most important mission is to continue to help Russians understand who Americans are, what we stand for, and what we seek in our relationship with Russia and the Russian people.

I want to encourage Russians to visit America, and not just the big cities but places like Montana. My greatest asset and love is my family. Ours is a typical American family, watching sports, listening to music, meeting new people, and traveling around Russia are our highest priorities.

I’ve worked closely with President Obama since the first day of his administration to develop the relationship between the United States and Russia based on our mutual interest and mutual respect for one another. The president called for a reset with Russia, animated by the belief that greater engagement could produce security and economic benefits for both of our countries.

The most important part of my job will be to foster more contact between the people of the United States and the people of Russia. I’m interested in not only meeting government officials, but people from other political parties and movements, businessmen and women, civil society activists, and regular Russians just like you.

(In Russian) I’m inviting Russians to contact me directly on Twitter and Facebook. Goodbye for now, I will see you again soon.

Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at josh.rogin@foreignpolicy.com.

Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.

A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.

Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C. Twitter: @joshrogin

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