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FFI In the News

When foreigners ask if it’s safe to visit the United States

FFI President and CEO Jeremi Snook was recently interviewed by Jim Galloway of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Political Blog on March 13, discussing the political situation in the United States and Friendship Force’s 40th Anniversary. As Galloway writes,

If the Friendship Force were a woman, she would be the empress dowager of Atlanta’s ambitions to become an international city.

The foreign exchange network made its debut 40 years ago, at the height of the Cold War, during a White House ceremony presided over by two of Washington’s newest residents, Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter.

The concept was novel. Rather than stay in hotels, troupes of regular Americans without rank or government status would bunk in the homes of foreign hosts. The same hospitality would be offered here in return.

In its early days, when the Friendship Force became a vehicle for penetrating the Iron Curtain, journalists embedded themselves within the group. Later, headlines would tell of the World War II vet making a first, mind-changing visit to Japan or the former Vietnam War grunt hosting a woman from Hanoi….

Read the rest of the article from the AJC here.