“What is soft power? It is the ability to get what you want through attraction rather than coercion or payments. It arises from the attractiveness of a country’s culture, political ideals, and policies.”

–Joseph S. Nye Jr. – 2004

Soft power as termed by Joseph Nye and explained by other others, is to basically persuade others to want what you want, to shape the preferences of others through attraction rather than coercion; cultural values and policies are the tools of soft power.

The United States of America, after emerging one of the world powers in World War II, entered the Cold War era using successful soft and hard power policies to become the emerging super power but since then, we see a constant decline in the perception of the US as a soft power leader.

With the end of the Cold War, soft power seemed expendable, and Americans became more interested in saving money than in investing in soft power. Between 1989 and 1999, the budget of the United States Information Agency (USIA) decreased by 10%.

Post 9/11 attacks, USA realised that this is the modern world of information and good public diplomacy is an integral part of internal security. Soft policies those were implemented by US also failed as we can see the current situation in the world and the hatred of US in the Muslim world giving rise to agency’s like Al- Qaeda. Even though USA is still the strongest power in the world, it now again faces limitations due to poor public democracy.