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Rice: Still Not Running for VP


U.S. President George W. Bush and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice pose for a photo as they attend a meeting with new NATO invitees at the NATO summit in Bucharest, Romania, on April 3, 2008. (Reuters)

By Glenn Kessler
Condoleezza Rice wants it known: She is still not interested in being vice president.

Sean McCormack, her spokesman, today tried to dampen speculation that erupted Sunday after Dan Senor, a GOP political operative, claimed on ABC's "This Week" that Rice was "actively, actually in recent weeks, campaigning" for the job. Peppered with questions at the regular State Department briefing, McCormack reiterated that Rice wants to return to Stanford University, where she is a tenured professor.

"I think what she is considering is focusing on her work as secretary of state because -- you may have missed it -- but there's actually quite a bit to do," McCormack said. "There's quite a bit left to do here as secretary of state."

Rice, in a recent interview with the Washington Times, claimed no interest in being vice president after nearly eight years in Washington and a year as a campaign adviser to then-Gov. George W. Bush. She said it was time for "new blood."

Speculation has centered on Rice because as a prominent African American woman, she would help balance out a GOP ticket that otherwise might appear too bland next to the excitement generated by either the first major-party black or female candidate.

However, as Bush's national security adviser in the first term, she is closely identified with the Iraq war -- at a time when Sen. John McCain, a war supporter, is trying to distance himself from the administration's foreign policy approach.

Senor cited as one piece of evidence the fact that Rice recently spoke at a conservative salon hosted by GOP activist Grover Norquist. Political eyebrows were also raised when Rice posed for a feature last week in Fitness magazine on her workout regimen.

McCormack dismissed both as perfectly ordinary. "I think if you look back at her tenure, in terms of her activities, you will find all of these activities perfectly normal and consistent with the way she has done her job over the past three years or so," he said. "If she is actively seeking the vice presidency, then she's the last one to know about it."

In fact, actively seeking a job would be out of character for Rice. Throughout her career, she has found herself unexpectedly chosen for high-level posts by powerful patrons, such as when she was named provost of Stanford without ever being a department head or even full professor.

Rice has mused about returning to the faculty at Stanford and perhaps writing a sober political science book that only policy wonks would want to read. But would the very ambitious secretary really be able to resist a history-making bid for the vice presidency if McCain came knocking on her door?

That's unclear. But first McCain would have to ask.

The presumptive Republican nominee professed surprise on Sunday about the reports that Rice was seeking the job. "I missed those signals," he told reporters, though he called Rice a "great American."

By Web Politics Editor  |  April 7, 2008; 6:25 PM ET
Categories:  B_Blog , John McCain  
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Comments

I think that it's a brilliant move. Now I can vote for a black and a female when I vote for John McCain and I can still vote for the strongest candidate on global warming and on a joint foreign policy with European countries . This takes all of the thunder out of the excitement of electing a female Clinton and a black Obama - steals the thunder. I will be voting for a Republican President for the first time in my life if this is the Republican ticket. McCain and Rice all the way!
Now if only the war were ended.

Posted by: Sandi Perry | April 9, 2008 7:24 AM | Report abuse

How about competency? from swimming freestyle:

"Prior to her tenure as Secretary of State, Ms. Rice served as National Security Advisor to President Bush from his inauguration until Colin Powell resigned in 2005. In other words, Ms. Rice was responsible to be the chief advisor to the President on all national security issues prior and subsequent to September 11, 2001. (Has anyone seen that "Al Qaeda Determined to Attack United States" memo?) If I were her, I might consider leaving this job off my resume."

http://swimmingfreestyle.typepad.com

Posted by: Jay McDonough | April 8, 2008 9:00 PM | Report abuse

Regarding Gondola...., I say "Bring it on ! ", because she is one world-class imbecile.

I DO believe the GOP is collectively quite insane.

Posted by: Hub | April 8, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Listen unto RAT-The!

So sayeth, ME!

Posted by: ALMIGHTY-The | April 8, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Please, Washington Post, get this Page FIXED!

All the worst Children from Y!Answers Game have come running! THEY live for anonymous Postings where they feel free to get as personal as Childish as they can.

Registered ID is MORE than just a Good Idea!

ESPECIALLY in a POLITICAL SECTION! :-(

Posted by: Rat-The | April 8, 2008 11:30 AM | Report abuse

By virtue of having read three posts from me, you have looked into my soul and revealed for all the world to see my inadaquecies, shortcomings, and character flaws. You must be some sort of uber-wizard to gain such powerful insight from a few lines of text. I am in awe of your powers of projection, they must serve you well during all of those "unpleasant exchanges" you find yourself in.

Although I am especially confused about one aspect of the image of me you paint in your eloquent responses - anyone who actually knows me, knows there is nothing sweet, innocent, or even approaching little about my "arse". Is it possible you've confused me with some object of your adolescent fantasies? Perhaps you were imagining one of those small farm animals who's company you're so fond of?


Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 8, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Won't happen unless Condie gets an engagement ring in the next four months. Only one American president has not been married and that was more than 150 years ago. Democrats MIGHT support a single, never married candidate, but there is no way the family value orientated GOP would support a candidate who's not marriedd. Also the questions about why Condoleezza is not, and has never been married will not be answered with a "it's none of your business" type of answer.

Posted by: harryo | April 8, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Listen to farfalle, he is the only way to Allah. His use of capslock is awe inspiring. I was also moved when he told me how unqualified Lincoln was for President (he was only a two year house rep with a bunch of flowery speeches) and how any attorney who doesn't litigate (60%, at least) are simply lazy. Farfalle is the master of hiding his ignorance and lack of education in subject matters with a pompous sense of self-righteousness. This makes him ideal for the spot of VP on the McCain ticket.

Posted by: farfalle44's Muslim Friend | April 8, 2008 9:53 AM | Report abuse

farfalle44,
So if anyone in the Middle East likes a candidate it's automatically bad thing? Is this based on your analysis that everyone from Dubai is a terrorist b/c two hijackers were? Also, wouldn't this mean Bush is suspect due to all of his literal handholding with the Saudis as well as his dad's work for them with the Carlyle Group? If you had any sort of perspective you would realize that all Muslim countries and people aren't inherently evil and that we can create allies in the Middle East if we back off Bush's policies of stupidity and arrogance. The world is more complicated than black and white. Unfortunately, some people can't wrap their tiny brains around this fact. McCain will continue the same old "if they're brown flush them down" foreign policy that has united our enemies and alienated our allies. Get some understanding before you make yourself look more foolish.

Posted by: Ralph | April 8, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Why is Romney considered knowledgeable about the economy? Just because he can say tax cut over and over or vow to create an economy based solely on bringing in the Winter Olympics? Give me a break. The guy is just a corporate shill that will continue to consolidate our wealth at the top. He's a joke and a bad one at that.

Posted by: Ralph | April 8, 2008 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Yeah, she's qualified in the way that Keith Richards and Amy Winehouse are qualified to be drug czar.

Posted by: Ralph | April 8, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Considering Rice's failure as a Secretary of State, McCain would be a fool to choose her as a running mate. The transparent ploy of picking a minority VP would be a bad decision for the general election against Obama. Not to mention the fact that this whole rumor came from the less-than-credible Dan Senor. Rice's Mideast policy has been weak and appeasing, along the lines of a Chamberlain.

Posted by: KB | April 8, 2008 9:23 AM | Report abuse

P.S. In response to Patrick, above, the inanity of your remarks says a great deal about your knowledge base-which is, effectively know-nothing!

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 8, 2008 7:01 AM | Report abuse

Actually, Rat-the, I agree with you; McCain DOES need Mitt Romney for his business acumen, and Mitt appeals to millions of voters on a number of different levels-I actually think that would be a good Republican ticket-one that I would vote for if Obama is the Dem. candidate! As for Condy Rice, McCain wouldn't even CONSIDER her, that's just rumour that I wouldn't be surprised people in HER camp started, she's such a shameless self-promoter since she has been nothing short of incompetent and unqualified for both her high-profile positions!

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 8, 2008 6:57 AM | Report abuse

I think that here is missing the obvious:

McCAIN (and possibly Rice herself) have launched a TEST BALLOON to see the reactions and basing of such, the issue would be analyzed further, certainly not before the OBAMA / HILLARY issue is settled

Caminito

Posted by: caminito | April 8, 2008 1:59 AM | Report abuse

OK Folks. Since I am not trying to get Dr. Rice now, and Once upon a Time I did want her as VP; my explanation.

The Economy has taken some MAJOR Blows. We are soooo far Past, destroyed Wages, it is NOT FUNNY.

McCain is the Military Expert, who does not have a Clue about Foreign Trade, US Trade, Business, or Economics.

He NEEDS Mitt Romney, who coincidentally does not have the Right Stuff for War! Not that he could not get expert advice on a Military Action. In Fact, I trust Mitt being able to listen to the Defense Minister, better than I trust McCain to decide a viable strategy for an Economic Revival.

But, as far as Condi is concerned, and true to what I say about a well balanced TEAM being needed for the Unforeseeable, Things HAVE Changed! :-(

Posted by: Rat-The | April 8, 2008 1:19 AM | Report abuse

Condi is the corrupt to the hilt part of the the present administration and in fact has too much blood on her hands. She is as culpable as any body in this current administration and totally incompetent. She would be wise to denounce conservative republicanism and get as far as possible form politics as she can.

Posted by: winmaster2 | April 8, 2008 12:42 AM | Report abuse

I had occasion to be on the opposite side of issues at Stanford with Secretary Rice, and though I don't wish her back on that place, it's an ongoing relief to hear she's not intending to run for VP. She is the perfect hatchetman, and McCain may still ask her to step into that role (traditional for many VPs), but it is truly scary to think of her a heartbeat away from the presidency. She has the moral compass of Henry Kissinger.

cfc

Posted by: chuck carlson | April 8, 2008 12:42 AM | Report abuse

farfalle, I'm pretty sure you have no idea who I am or where I've been. I'm also pretty sure that has nothing to do with anything on this page.
Stupid people anywhere can think whatever they want. That doesn't make it true. Your own posts prove that.
BTW, are you also posting as mustafa ali?

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 8, 2008 12:28 AM | Report abuse

I have watched her over the years - under fire - in hostile lands - up against BS - yada yada -- This person has great merit - not to be VP but P.

I would like to hear her views on subjects without the constraints of her present office prior to say a full YEA! However from what I have seen in the years of her service -- I SAY YES!

Posted by: 13021 | April 8, 2008 12:15 AM | Report abuse

Sure she could run... But she will never be vice president (or president for that matter). Only in the Republican Party are you considered for a promotion after messing everything up!

Posted by: dem in chicago | April 8, 2008 12:04 AM | Report abuse

A previous poster said: "While I can understand why republicans would like to add a black female to the ticket this year, I don't think she would allow herself to be used that way. As a woman, a person of color, and a highly successful person I would hope she has more self respect than that."

Does anyone else think that it's a little strange to consider a position where you a 70 year old heart beat away from being the most powerful person in the world "being used"

Posted by: Wolfcastle | April 8, 2008 12:01 AM | Report abuse

it's perfect counter-strategizing. the republican party has screwed blacks for decades, and, when they're running against a black male and white female, hopefully, they counter with a white male and black female. yassuh it's brilliant!

Posted by: Anonymous | April 8, 2008 12:00 AM | Report abuse

As an aside, I want to congratulate Washington Post for providing a forum for readers to post their comments uncensored even when the comments are highly critical of the Post and its stories. This is quite unlike the liberal blogs who routinely censor negative comments from its readers.

Posted by: Kevin99999 | April 7, 2008 11:54 PM | Report abuse

Lies, lies and more lies. It is very difficult to believe anything that comes from Secretary Rice's office. She and her surrogates have misinformed the public for almost 8 years so why would this be any different. Personally I'd love to see her on the Republican ticket. The idea of Senator McCain trying to explain what positives she brings to the party would be very interesting.

Posted by: Youngj1 | April 7, 2008 11:32 PM | Report abuse

John Kasich is McCain's best bet
for a number of reasons.If Strickland
is picked on the Democrat side then
JC Watts,would be a great choice then.

Posted by: Ohio is the ticket | April 7, 2008 11:30 PM | Report abuse

She has been called the worst National Security Secretary ever. She has been seen to be among the weakest Secretaries of State this nation has ever had to tolerate. She doesn't have a clue-- but then neither does McCain.

RICE AND MCCAIN ARE PERFECT FOR EACH OTHER. LET'S SEND THEM INTO A HAPPY AND SAFE RETIREMENT.

Posted by: Mainegirl | April 7, 2008 11:27 PM | Report abuse

Secretary of State Condi Rice is much better qualified as she is than Hillary Clinton's 35 years of negative experience. Hillary is not electable.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 11:26 PM | Report abuse

Would not be a good choice for McCain, no governing experience, no legislative experience, no economy experience, no military experience. She may make a good Sec. of Education, her background is academia. There are far more better qualified candidates.

Posted by: cheersdk | April 7, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Prof. Condi Rice is a self-made role model for all American women of all colors. She doesn't climb to the top on any man's coattail like Hillary did.

I would be grateful if she can serve our country further, but I respect her wishes to return to Stanford.

I think she has potential for Presidency, not just V.P.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

Why does media keep harping on this. She never said she'd even consider it. I guess it's just some kind of wet dream of media's.

Posted by: arny | April 7, 2008 11:23 PM | Report abuse

That's right Kevin; she has. And the very few times she's been questioned by Congress about 9/11, and a few other things, she's gotten very very testy-JUST LIKE OBAMA-YOU DON'T QUESTION ME, THEY BOTH SAY, BECAUSE THAT IS RACIST, AND I'M NOT GOING TO STAND FOR IT!

So, she gets a free pass on her mediocrity, and incompetence for the job-she had a mentor, and that is why is where she is in the WH power structure today: black, female, with a Ph.d who likes football and could talk with the boys, so the foreign policy advisor took her under his wing and promoted her right to the top, where she has never belonged.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 11:12 PM | Report abuse

By all accounts, Rice has been an ineffective member of the cabinet in every position she has held. She has repeatedly lied to the congress and to the public. I have heard that she plays piano, so what, even if she virtuoso piano player which is not.

Posted by: Kevin99999 | April 7, 2008 11:06 PM | Report abuse

McCain would never pick Rice as his VP; she's a lesbo.

Posted by: daisychaingang | April 7, 2008 11:02 PM | Report abuse

So happy that Nina Simone arose from the grave to give her opinion of Rice as a VP candidate. Hey Nina, what do you think about Rice's piano playing? Nina, you are the best...wish you were alive!

Posted by: Heston | April 7, 2008 10:49 PM | Report abuse

Get Real, yeah, take your own advice! No, I totally disagree with your statement: I'm sure she's okay as a professor, but as a Sec. of State? She's been AN UNMITIGATED DISASTER; SHE IS PARTIALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT HAPPENED IN PAKISTAN WITH BENAZIR BHUTTO, JUST TO NAME ONE OF HER MANY DUBIOUS "ACHIVEMENTS"-BUT I WANT YOU AND OTHERS WHO THINK SHE IS SO GRAND TO FREAKING TELL US WHAT SHE HAS DONE THAT HAS ADVANCED FOREIGN POLICY GOALS FOR THE US, HUH? PALESTINE? WRONG-IT'S MORE DANGEROUS THERE THAN EVER! RUSSIA? SHE SPEAKS RUSSIAN, PUTIN WOULDN'T GIVE HER THE FREAKING TIME OF DAY-HOWEVER PRES. BUSH DID A DAMN FINE JOB, WITH THE HELP OF STEPHEN HADLEY THAT IS OF MOVING US FOREIGN POLICY GOALS FORWARD IN A WAY THAT BENEFITS THE AMERICAN PUBLIC, JUST LIKE HE DID IN SAUDI ARABIA AND THE UAE A COUPLE OF MONTHS AGO-BUT THAT GOT NOT ONE THING IN HADES TO DO WITH LA RICE!

MASTER SELF-PROMOTER WHO HAS RUN THE STATE DEPT. INTO THE GROUND, CHECK!

Posted by: Arrabbiato | April 7, 2008 10:46 PM | Report abuse

Condi Rice knows herself, and she knows running for elected office wouldn't play to her strengths. At one point Hillary Clinton said the same thing - too bad she let Bill talk her into running anyway. Being a team player National Security Advisor (or Senator) is a lot different than being a leader President. It's not about better or worse, higher or lower - just different.

Posted by: Tom J | April 7, 2008 10:40 PM | Report abuse

Uh, Patrick, I'm pretty sure you haven't taken your sweet, innocent little arse outside the country much, but I can tell you, having just returned from the Middle East myself-THAT THE ARAB WORLD IS WAITING WITH BATED BREATH AND ARE BEING OH SO SILENT SO AS TO NOT TO "JINX" THINGS; BUT THE EXCITEMENT FOR BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA TO BE THE NEXT US PRESIDENT IS PALPABLE. Seriously. I actually got into a rather unpleasant exchange in Dubai with a local about Obama not 4 weeks ago-the locals see Barack AS ONE OF THEM.

p.s. And remember, 2 of the muscle hijackers in 9/11 were from Dubai.

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 7, 2008 10:39 PM | Report abuse

The woman helped lie us into war, she's in the oil industry's pocket (remember Exxon's S.S. Condeeleeza), and she's never run anything--except the State Department into the ground.

Posted by: Lucky Lakeshore | April 7, 2008 10:36 PM | Report abuse

Dr. Rice is exponentially smarter and more capable than all of you. She would change our country for the better in ways you can't imagine. I'm glad such ignorant hacks, like yourselves, are Democrats. It helps me sleep better at night.

Posted by: get real | April 7, 2008 10:36 PM | Report abuse


A great American? No. A practiced, ruthless and accomplished liar, yes. Please get this cancer out of the white house and keep it out.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

Muslims all over the world are proud of Barrack Obama, we will all smile with happiness.

Posted by: Mustafa Ali | April 7, 2008 9:50 PM


You are so transparently full of crap; just another fat wasp pretending to be a muslim because you think someone will be stupid enough to believe you. Barack Obama is as Muslim as Pope John Paul 2. Nice try, though, mustafake.

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 7, 2008 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Annette Keller: Don't you think it's about time that America has a leader whose moral values are genuine, who intends to help the middle class, and the real workers in our country, rather than to give of our public treasure to the rich and to the corporations. GW epitomizes the hypocrisy that is a sickness among republicans as a party: he espouses conservative christian values while promoting hateful, destructive policies that bring shame to our country (e.g, Iraq, marriage amendment, tax cuts). Obama may not have a lot of experience, but he inspires; he can bring us together, not rule through fear and division as GW has done. Prior to reading these comments, I had naively thought that Condi Rice would be a formidable choice for McCain. Now, I realize that she would be yet another reason for this to be a Democratic year for our country.

Posted by: Greg K. | April 7, 2008 10:14 PM | Report abuse

Ms Keller, erchrist said Condi Rice is a mediocre mind. He/She didn't say Obama was a genius. If you disagree with his assesment of Sec. Rice then the appropriate response is to defend her, not to attack Obama. You prove nothing about Rice in your rant against Obama, does that mean you agree she is a mediocre mind?
I don't, but I'm not going to attack some third-party to make the point.
Condi Rice speaks Russian fluently. She plays classical piano. She was the well-respected president of a prestigous university. She has risen to the top in the cut-throat world of international politics, overcoming barriers of race and gender. All of those speak to someone with much more than a mediocre mind.
Alas, having a great mind doesn't seem to have helped her be a very good Secretary of State, but no one is perfect.

Posted by: Patrick Huss | April 7, 2008 10:10 PM | Report abuse

Annie Keller.....We have all heard about Hillary's experience..especially the ducking of sniper fire experience. Can you say President Obama......I hear Condi is voting for Obama...Way to go gal!

Posted by: Quavaduff | April 7, 2008 10:08 PM | Report abuse

Good Grief!!!! I am not voting for McCain unless Clinton gets the nomination-- and then,,, would not vote if Rice were part of the ticket... Worst Sec. EVER!!!! She needs to go to Texas with the man in her life--the worst Pres. ever the idiot BUSH!!

Posted by: luwltr | April 7, 2008 10:07 PM | Report abuse

The woman is brilliant. She won't get involved with the BS of Presidential politics.

let her go back and teach.... she's far too classy to get invoved with the lowlife.

Posted by: don4 | April 7, 2008 10:06 PM | Report abuse

McCain will get all the bigot votes, but not with Rice on the ticket. I guess that means bad news for Lieberman too.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Rice is very experienced at being incompetent. That is a great credential for a VP. Colin Powell at least had the courage to admit that he was wrong. Can one of our Republican friends list her achievements? I'd be curious if I've overlooked them... Have a great day and be happy :)

Posted by: Tom | April 7, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Senor lied about Iraq , he lied from Iraq , he thought they would all speak english like Chalabi . He now is lying about Condie . Alright Campbell , whose baby is that ?

Posted by: nat turner | April 7, 2008 10:02 PM | Report abuse

Funny news item.

They just presented the idea to see how people would react.

And it worked.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 9:56 PM | Report abuse

Annette: You're 100 percent on the mark about Obama, of course, historians will look back at this period of our history and shake their heads in disbelief, that the American public and Dem. politicians could have allowed themselves to be so taken by someone who quite literally HASN'T DONE ONE DAMN THING IN HIS LIFE EXCEPT FLIT HERE AND THERE, BECAUSE HE HAS A SHORT ATTENTION SPAN AND HE DOESN'T DO "DIFFICULT" -HE SAT IN A LAW OFFICE AND WROTE MEMOS AND BRIEFS, BUT DID NOT DO ANY TRIAL WORK; THAT'S TOO "DIFFICULT"

BUT REALLY THE ONLY THING CONSISTENT ABOUT HIM IS HOW HE HAS MADE A RACIST HATEMONGER LIKE REV. WRIGHT HIS SPIRITUAL ADVISOR AND MENTOR FOR 20 YEARS-OBAMA DOESN'T HAVE ENOUGH EXPERIENCE TO GET HIRED TO BE A MANAGER IN A STATE AGENCY, LET ALONE A FED. AGENCY-HE JUST DOESN'T HAVE ANY EXPERIENCE-AT ANYTHING! A GADFLY, LIKE NANCY PELOSI!

But as to Rice, she is the biggest do-nothing, but at the same time, she's a master self-promoter, a fraud who makes people THINK she's doing something: She has absolutely NOTHING OF ACCOMPLISHMENT TO SHOW FOR HER 8 YEARS; BUT HAS DONE MUCH HARM AS SEC. OF STATE-SHE GETS A FREE PASS, LIKE OBAMA, ON ANY CRITICISM FROM THE PRESS BECAUSE SHE IS BLACK.

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 7, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

To create a party ticket by racial ingredients will cook you a disaster. Besides, with what Condi HASN'T done in the last 8 years, let her go to Stanford.

Posted by: erkola | April 7, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Muslims all over the world are proud of Barrack Obama, we will all smile with happiness.

Posted by: Mustafa Ali | April 7, 2008 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Annette Keller:
"Like Obama isn't a self-promoter?
All of the terrified Democratic voices on this page. Hilarious."

You sure like to throw the "terror" word around a lot, don't you, madam?
OK, we get it -- you like Rice and dislike Obama. Give a rest now, OK? It's gotten boring.
Nobody's afraid of you, Condi Rice or any other GOP nom.
And I hate to break this to you, but McCain and Rice also do their share of self-promotion.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 9:34 PM | Report abuse

>>"My personal opinion: Rice is just another mediocre mind like so many in the Bush administration, promoted to a position of importance because of suitable ideology rather than capabilities."

And what is Obama? A rocket scientist?

He failed at being a community organizer and went to law school. In his job out of Harvard Law, he failed to make partner at his law firm and went into politics.

Rice has a far more successful career and much more experience than Obama can even make up (his last revisionist narrative is how he has MORE experience than McCain or Clinton).

Obama is like a 12-year-old who keeps making bigger and bigger vague promises of what he's going to do or what he can do. Rice has the E-word on her resume: experience!

I think the terror and lack of rationality in the Democratic voices on this page tells the story of how good a pick Rice would be!

Posted by: Annette Keller | April 7, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Rice, on the surface, seems to be an ideal candidate. She is certainly an intelligent and forceful presence.
She is more than qualified, especially considering the lightweight in the current Oval Office.
However, her role in the Iraq fiasco would hurt more than help.
Also, it would simply look like, considering the two Demo. front-runners aren't white males, that the GOP was pandering in the worst way.
Settle on being NFL commissioner, Condi.

Posted by: vegasgirl | April 7, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

correction: Osama bin Laden threat not Obama threat. Freudian slip.

Posted by: D.E. Smalls | April 7, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

So you're saying that Ms Rice's dissertation was centered on "MILITARY POLICY AND POLITICS IN CZECHOSLOVAKIA". It's a freakin' shame she didn't write one on "MILITARY POLICY AND POLITICS IN IRAQ OR AFGHANISTAN". Maybe she would have been a little more up to speed on what was happening.
She's a gopher. A figure head. She's a weak appendage of a Dragon. YOU GET RID OF THE TWO HEADS AND THE REST OF THE BODY WILL MELT BACK INTO THEIR FORMER VOCATIONS.

Posted by: Nina Simone | April 7, 2008 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Condi has been the most overrated member of the Bush regime. With all the press over her academic credentials at the beginning of the Bush term, she was National Security Advisor who did not recognize the Obama threat and rubber-stamped WMD threat of Saddam. Ms. Rice has not left any lasting legacy for historians to ponder execept to pander to the interests of President Bush and being intimidated by Vice President Cheney, along with Gonzo. Good luck, Condi when you go back to Stanford and start practicing revisionist history in Janurary of 2009.

Posted by: D.E. Smalls | April 7, 2008 9:21 PM | Report abuse

imagine that, a vice presidential candiate with the smoking gun ( in the form of a mushroom cloud ).
If the Democrates could be so lucky.

Posted by: OBERST | April 7, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

>>JakeD wrote: "I'm male, but not a Clinton supporter, and I don't think that I've piled on with sexist Clinton-bashing, this year at least ; )"

:) Yes, you seem like a charmer. How nice!

Cheers.

Posted by: Annette Keller | April 7, 2008 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Condi as VP would be the stake through the heart of the walking dead GOP.

Posted by: jw765 | April 7, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

If McCain takes her on as VP, then that will save Roger Goddell. She really wants to be NFL commish.

Posted by: acc434 | April 7, 2008 9:14 PM | Report abuse

>>Arrabblato wrote: "CONDY RICE-A MASTER SELF-PROMOTER"

Like Obama isn't a self-promoter?

All of the terrified Democratic voices on this page. Hilarious.

What could make a mass of Democratic men all mess their pants all at once across the nation?

Condoleeza Rice as McCain's VP pick after so many pro-Obama Democratic males spent all Primary Season piling on to Clinton with deeply offensive sexist Clinton-bashing, believing that non-right-wing women would have nohwere else to go with their votes...

I think the percentage of Pennsylvania Clinton voters who say that they will vote for McCain over Obama if he gets the nomination is up to 40%.

After as mean and sexist as the Obama supporters (including Democratic males like Chris Matthews) have been to Clinton and Clinton supporters, I'm totally ready to vote for a centrist McCain this Fall if Clinton is forced out of the Democratic Race. If Condoleeza Rice is his VP, I'd have no second thoughts at all!

Posted by: Annette Keller | April 7, 2008 9:13 PM | Report abuse

Makes sense. Failing forward is her speciality.

Posted by: branfo4 | April 7, 2008 9:12 PM | Report abuse

I hear they do NOT want her back at Stanford!

Posted by: Aldo | April 7, 2008 9:11 PM | Report abuse

each of your Bloggers add "color"- to the main article. A Seth, a character in "Gloryland" in Disney world, adds more flair referring to Rice as a woman, a person of color. These mindless midjets become Electorates for this great Country in a few short months, to elect another "leader".

Posted by: jagdish kalkunte, M.D. | April 7, 2008 9:05 PM | Report abuse

A current WaPo gallery video of McCain, answering whether he's considered Rice, makes clear he has and has rejected her. Don't people get it? The GOP considers an all white male ticket their secret November weapon.

Posted by: jhbyer | April 7, 2008 9:02 PM | Report abuse

The cynic in me is would say that Condi Rice has been practicing to be VP for a couple of years now. NOBODY respects or listens to the VP. She has a two or three year headstart on all the other VP candidates in that regard.

How someone who has been leading the efforts of an administration that has been so consistently incorrect on just about everything would be considered is a mystery.

To believe her fans, she was always right, just didn't get listened to enough by the rest of the administration. That would make her smart but impotent and, in the end, more loyal than honest. In that context, she would be perfect for a VP and perfect for McCain.

Posted by: steve boyington | April 7, 2008 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Sunshine is the best disinfectant. She would go scurrying back into her rat hole in no time, with the public scrutiny of a campaign. Bring her on!

Posted by: lwps | April 7, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

Condi You Must not have liked that remark from Anonymous, isn't it fun getting your... busted just like everyone else

Posted by: ANDY | April 7, 2008 8:49 PM | Report abuse

You know, JakeD, you could have just posted a link....

As is common with Wikipedia articles about living persons, the bulk of the article has an overall positive tone, and relatively minor items are given great importance, such as simply doing the most basic tasks of her job like being Bush's mouthpiece in Kenya. Similarly, it is several times insinuated that Rice was forming policy as well as controlling negotiations when actually there is little if any evidence she was more than a convenient foil for others. Mind you, this is a problem the media in general has, where when someone who holds an important position says something policy related they assume this person has something to do with creating that policy.

These sort of difficulties in evaluation are inherent in a structure such as Wikipedia which is dependent on unreliable sources such as general press articles which are little more than rewrites of press releases, and op-ed pieces masquerading as journalism.

My personal opinion: Rice is just another mediocre mind like so many in the Bush administration, promoted to a position of importance because of suitable ideology rather than capabilities. The fact of being that rare bird, a black woman who embraces neo-conservative politics, has assured her of rising even higher. So far.

Posted by: erchrist | April 7, 2008 8:49 PM | Report abuse

You know, JakeD, you could have just posted a link....

As is common with Wikipedia articles about living persons, the bulk of the article has an overall positive tone, and relatively minor items are given great importance, such as simply doing the most basic tasks of her job like being Bush's mouthpiece in Kenya. Similarly, it is several times insinuated that Rice was forming policy as well as controlling negotiations when actually there is little if any evidence she was more than a convenient foil for others. Mind you, this is a problem the media in general has, where when someone who holds an important position says something policy related they assume this person has something to do with creating that policy.

These sort of difficulties in evaluation are inherent in a structure such as Wikipedia which is dependent on unreliable sources such as general press articles which are little more than rewrites of press releases, and op-ed pieces masquerading as journalism.

My personal opinion: Rice is just another mediocre mind like so many in the Bush administration, promoted to a position of importance because of suitable ideology rather than capabilities. The fact of being that rare bird, a black woman who embraces neo-conservative politics, has assured her of rising even higher. So far.

Posted by: erchrist | April 7, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

My "Short List" (in order of preference):

1) Bloomberg
2) Romney
3) Rice
4) Gates
5) Cox

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Golly, just reading all these supportive Comments, and considering all the Love involved, who wouldn't want to carry the Load for all you wonderful People-Myself definitely excluded! ;~[

Consider the Fact she is tired! It has been a HARD 4 Years!

You try cleaning up after a Brain-Dead Catotonic Chimp all day-for 4 Years!

Posted by: Rat-The | April 7, 2008 8:45 PM | Report abuse

i'm a Democratic Republican, not a democrat or a republican. and you can find that in a real book, wikipedo wont have a full explanation since it lacks content, it does, it's the short form like a 1040ez. and Condoleezza is, well, beautiful to her husband, i know he told me just earlier today

Posted by: ANDY | April 7, 2008 8:43 PM | Report abuse

I think running on a platform that 82% of Americans feel is "the wrong direction" is political suicide. Picking one of the most visible members of the Bush cabinet for VP would just cement McCain's reputation as being "McSame."

Posted by: Jeff | April 7, 2008 8:36 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous:

So, you're saying that she received her doctorate in Political Science from the Graduate School of International Studies due to affirmative action? Do you have a link for that? BTW: who wrote her dissertation then, centered on military policy and politics in Czechoslovakia?

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Rice is at the epicenter of the Bush administration's greatest enigma: the campaign to democratize iraq. surely an accomplished person of her background knows full well that imposing democracy on an uncivil, dare we say barbarous, society is a sensible as building on quicksand. Whereas i give credit to Rice and the others for their bold determination to bolster american hegemony in the middle east, to base the occupation on such outrageously false premises was not only absurd, but horribly counterprodutive. As can be seen by comparing the British debacle in Basra with America's success in Fallujah,the war in Iraq has never been about winning hearts and minds, but about breaking backs. The fatuous illusion that iraq could somehow become a self determining state supported the light hand policy which has been so disastrous to pacifiying the country. If Iraq is to remain a unitary state, and it is by no means my opinion that it should, then it can only survive if it is ruled by methods appropriate to its character. Iraq doesnt need Ms. Rice and her fanciful notions of democracy for islam. what iraq needs is chemical ali.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 8:34 PM | Report abuse

You Democrats are absolute morons.

Posted by: telling it like it is | April 7, 2008 8:33 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, Condi... I don't think so.

You could have had a great career in government... but you attatched yourself to Bush.

Join the club, of those who were ruined because of Bush

Posted by: C. Powell | April 7, 2008 8:31 PM | Report abuse

JakeD fast fingers too. And Condi does have her 2 hands full, she does really, she has to use both to handle the pres.

Posted by: ANDY | April 7, 2008 8:30 PM | Report abuse

"Rice wrote NAFTA with Cheney"?! What are you talking about? That was ratified during BILL CLINTON's first term (while Rice was at Stanford and, I think, Cheney was at Haliburton).

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:28 PM | Report abuse

By all means, run. We have never had a VP with a Ph.D. in Affirmative Action.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 7, 2008 8:27 PM | Report abuse

Condoleezza got married on Sept. 21 2007 to a GUY Wounded and bent, on knees to she, who so does please, will you take me, as your lawful wedded husband... was his words. When Rudy Guliano got that phone call from his "wife" it was Condi answering yes.

Posted by: ANDY | April 7, 2008 8:26 PM | Report abuse

Rice wrote NAFTA with Cheney. What a team to inforce the TriLaterial Commissions (Google it)agenda for one world order. If Hillary isn't voted in then the links of Kissinger to Nixon, Baker to Regan & Bush Sr. and Cheney to Bush Jr. will be broken otherwise it will be B. Clinton to H. Clinton and the TriLateral Commission will be victor or Rice to McCain and they still are victor. Yuk. Time to brake the chain of methodical destruction of the United State of America. I wonder what the Bush's hear from their good family friend bin Laden lately?

Posted by: MissClarity | April 7, 2008 8:23 PM | Report abuse

That's just what McCain would need to destroy what is left of this country after Bush.

Posted by: OnlyHillaryCounts | April 7, 2008 8:21 PM | Report abuse

tommyd:

You're welcome.

ANDY:

No. I read the questions, looked up Wikipedia, and used "cut and paste". Next question?

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:20 PM | Report abuse

JakeD were you waiting to send that response, since it's length shows that one could not have typed all those facts in such o short time frame, unless, your secretly keeping track of Condi, or your ...

Posted by: ANDY | April 7, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

By choosing Rice, McCain would solve the gender and race question. Unlike Obama, Rice knows what life is like as a young black child growing up in America. She would be an inspiration to young African American females in this country. She fits Rev Wright's profile of growing up poor, black and being called the n word more than Obama does.

Posted by: skinsfan1978 | April 7, 2008 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Seth- Do you really think that anyone connected with this administration has any self respect??? Except showing up for work every day, and we don't even know if she's done that, what has she done???
I lost respect for Mr. Powell when he bailed on "the hole in the wall gang", and did not tell us the truth. She stayed in the loop with them and went along for the ride. No Seth, Aretha did not sing that song while thinking of Ms. Rice. RESPECT!!!

Posted by: Nina Simone | April 7, 2008 8:17 PM | Report abuse

thanks JakeD.

Posted by: tommyd | April 7, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Condo'lie'za would be more than a fitting successor to VP Dick "So?" Cheney. Four more years!B

Posted by: bldlcc | April 7, 2008 8:16 PM | Report abuse

Pity. I am a conservative and with Rice on the ticket, that is the absolute ONLY reason I would be tempted to vote for McCain. She is a class act. McCain trying to be a conservative is simply an act.

Posted by: LSwinford | April 7, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Annette Keller:

I'm male, but not a Clinton supporter, and I don't think that I've piled on with sexist Clinton-bashing, this year at least ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:14 PM | Report abuse

Karl: LOL!

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 7, 2008 8:13 PM | Report abuse

As they say, you can fool some of the people some of the time, but not all of the people all of the time...It's Stephen Hadley, National Security Advisor, who does ALL the heavy lifting on foreign policy for the State Dept.-Condy Rice stands around for the photo op, with her carefully coordinated outfits....

Posted by: farfalle44 | April 7, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

Condi will have no trouble finding a husband.

Posted by: Karl | April 7, 2008 8:11 PM | Report abuse

I'd vote for a centrist, pragmatic McCain with a Condoleeza Rice VP if Clinton doesn't get the Democratic nomination. In a Heartbeat!

I was inclined to vote for McCain anyways, instead of Obama.

McCain is probably the only male in the American political universe that hasn't piled on with sexist Clinton-bashing this year, who isn't a Clinton supporter.

Posted by: Annette Keller | April 7, 2008 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

It's time to crawl out of the nursery Condi.

Posted by: John Bailo | April 7, 2008 8:08 PM | Report abuse

Reporter 1 wrote:

"This woman is a master of self-promotion and it shows in this absurd chit-chat about her running for VP."

BEAUTIFUL, REPORTER, A PERFECT ENCAPSULATION OF CONDY RICE-A MASTER SELF-PROMOTER-LOOK AT STATE.GOV TO GET A GOOD IDEA OF HER SIGNING THINGS, LOOKING GOOD, LOOKING "BUSY" -WHAT A JOKE ON THE AMERICAN PUBLIC-THE NEXT ADMIN. HOPEFULLY WILL HAVE LEARNED FROM HER DISASTROUS TENURE!

Posted by: Arrabbiato | April 7, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Pick her McBush.
S.O.S. (and I don't mean help).

Posted by: rjMichigan | April 7, 2008 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Pick her McBush.
S.O.S. (and I don't mean help).

Posted by: rjMichigan | April 7, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

Jesse:

Didn't you enjoy reading the "Christopher Report"??

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:05 PM | Report abuse

I think thatRice is basically a good person but she is in way over her head with bush. She is not strong enough to make a stand for herself but instead follows bush sacrificing her own values. I would NOT vote for a McCain-Rice ticket.

Posted by: ddavidfordd | April 7, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

reporter1 and Arrabbiato (from Wikipedia):

Major initiatives
As Secretary of State, Rice has championed the expansion of democratic governments. Rice stated that 9/11 was rooted in "oppression and despair" and so, the US must advance democratic reform and support basic rights throughout the greater Middle East.[52] Rice has also reformed and restructured the department, as well as US diplomacy as a whole. "Transformational Diplomacy" is the goal that Rice describes as "work[ing] with our many partners around the world ... [and] build[ing] and sustain[ing] democratic, well-governed states that will respond to the needs of their people and conduct themselves responsibly in the international system."[53]

Rice's Transformational Diplomacy involves five core elements:

Relocating American diplomats to the places in the world where they are needed most, such as China, India, Brazil, Egypt, Nigeria, Indonesia, South Africa, and Lebanon.
Requiring diplomats to serve some time in hardship locations such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, and Angola; gain expertise in at least two regions; and become fluent in two foreign languages, such as Chinese, Arabic, or Urdu.
Focusing on regional solutions to problems like terrorism, drug trafficking, and diseases.
Working with other countries on a bilateral basis to help them build a stronger infrastructure, and decreasing foreign nations's dependence on American hand-outs and assistance.
Creating a high-level position, Director of Foreign Assistance, to oversee US foreign aid, thus de-fragmenting US foreign assistance.
Rice said that these moves were needed to help "maintain security, fight poverty, and make democratic reforms" in these countries and would help improve foreign nations's legal, economic, healthcare, and educational systems.[53][54]

Another aspect of Transformational Diplomacy is the emphasis on finding regional solutions. Rice also pressed for finding transnational solutions as well, stating that "in the 21st century, geographic regions are growing ever more integrated economically, politically and culturally. This creates new opportunities but it also presents new challenges, especially from transnational threats like terrorism and weapons proliferation and drug smuggling and trafficking in persons and disease."[53]


Rice unveils her plan for restructuring American foreign policy, which she calls "Transformational Diplomacy," during a January 18, 2006 speech at Georgetown University.Another aspect of the emphasis on regional solutions is the implementation of small, agile, "rapid-response" teams to tackle problems like disease, instead of the traditional approach of calling on experts in an embassy. Rice explained that this means moving diplomats out of the "back rooms of foreign ministries" and putting more effort into "localizing" the State Department's diplomatic posture in foreign nations. The Secretary emphasized the need for diplomats to move into the largely unreached "bustling new population centers" and to spread out "more widely across countries" in order to become more familiar with local issues and people.[53]

Rice restructured US foreign assistance, naming Randall L. Tobias, an AIDS relief expert, as administrator of USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development). Tobias, as a deputy secretary of state, had the job of focusing foreign assistance efforts and de-fragmenting the disparate aid offices to improve effectiveness and efficiency.[54]

Rice says these initiatives are necessary because of the highly "extraordinary time" in which Americans live. She compares the moves to the historic initiatives taken after World War II, which she claims helped stabilize Europe as it is known today. Rice states that her Transformational Diplomacy is not merely about "influencing" or "reporting on" governments, but "changing people's lives" through tackling the issues like AIDS, the education of women, and the defeat of violent extremism.[53]

In early 2007, Rice indicated that State Department employees were volunteering in large numbers, yet Defense Secretary Gates expressed concerns regarding a request from Rice that military personnel fill jobs in Iraq that are the responsibility of the State Department.[55]


Rice meets with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at a trilateral meeting in Jerusalem, February 2007.
Regional issues

Gaza withdrawal
Rice worked to persuade Israel to withdraw from Palestinian territories and free up commerce and travel between the two areas. During the summer of 2005, Rice encouraged Israeli leadership to withdraw from settlements in Gaza and the West Bank. Rice spent April 2005 raising support among Arab leaders.[56] In July, she visited the region to "help bring the weight of the United States" to the discussions.[57] In September, Rice hailed the successful withdrawal as a victory for both Israel and Palestine, saying, "This is an historic moment for both sides, and the commitment of both sides to a successful disengagement process has been impressive."[58] Gaza is now under Palestinian control once again. However, Palestinians complained that they were not able to travel through border crossings in and out of Gaza, which had stifled commerce.[57]

Border Crossings Deal

Rice announces brokering of the deal to open Gaza border crossings after a sleepless 48-hour negotiation.In November 2005, Rice renegotiated an opening of the Gaza border crossings.[59] Secretary Rice extended her visit to Jerusalem for a mediation session November 14, meeting alternately with Israel and Palestinian delegations. Rice negotiated differences between Israel and Palestine that included a proposed blacklist of Palestinians that had been detained by Israel and a concern that future violence would induce a renewed closure of the border crossings. By November 15, Rice announced an agreement to open Gaza's borders, with a system of transportation between Gaza and the West Bank, defining operations for transporting cargo and people across the border and allowing Gaza to reopen its international airport and begin work on a seaport. This included the Rafah border crossing, Palestine's only land link to a country other than Israel. It also included monitoring of the crossings by officials from the European Union.[60]

Gideon Levy, reporter for an Israeli newspaper, complained Rice had accomplished little: "in what was considered the "achievement" of the current visit, Israel also promised to open the Karni crossing. Karni will be open, one can assume, only slightly more than the "safe passage," which never opened following the previous futile visit."[61]


Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Map showing electoral districts and areas of formal Palestinian control (green)Rice pushed for peaceful, democratic elections in Palestine following the death of Yasser Arafat. Rice asserted that "there should be the ability of Palestinian people to participate in the elections" and claimed that democratic elections would represent "a key step in the process of building a peaceful, democratic Palestinian state." Rice, alluding to the US-labeled terrorist organization Hamas, stated that "there should be no place in the political process for groups or individuals who refuse to renounce terror and violence, recognize Israel's right to exist, and disarm," saying, "You cannot have one foot in politics and the other foot in terror."[62]

Rice persuaded a reluctant Israel to allow Israeli Palestinians in East Jerusalem to vote in the Palestinian Authority elections. Israel allowed Palestinians in East Jerusalem to vote in the January 25, 2006 parliamentary elections, while banning Hamas, which officially calls for Israel's destruction, from campaigning there. Rice lauded the turnout and congratulated President Abbas, while informing the victorious Hamas that it would "have to make some difficult choices," saying, "Those who win elections have an obligation to govern democratically. ... It now inherits the obligations of a Palestinian government, authority, that go back now for more than a decade to recognize the right of Israel to exist, to renounce violence, to disarm militias, as is the case in the roadmap, and to find a peaceful solution in two states."[63]

In response to the Hamas victory, Israel withheld funds belonging to the Palestinian Authority, and reinforced restrictions on movement in and out of the Gaza Strip and within the West Bank. Rice stated: "Clearly, [Hamas] cannot govern in a circumstance in which they cannot represent a responsible government before the international system." Rice told her Israeli counterpart that "the economic boycott on the Hamas-led Palestinian government is effective and in the international community will continue to maintain the boycott."[64]

George Soros faulted Rice for refusing to deal with Hamas. "[N]o progress is possible as long as the Bush administration and the Ehud Olmert government persist in their current position of refusing to recognize a unity government that includes Hamas. The recent meeting between Condoleezza Rice, Abbas, and Olmert turned into an empty formality," said Soros. This was playing into the hands of the hard-liners in Hamas, increasing the influence of Syria and Iran, and would escalate the fighting, Soros said.[65]

Immediately following Hamas's victory in the elections, Rice attempted to garner international support in demanding that Hamas recognize Israel's right to exist. By April, Hamas officials appeared to publicly state that they are willing to work toward recognizing Israel. Under their terms, Israel would have to fully withdraw from disputed territories, including Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem.[66] Many saw this as a positive starting point for negotiations that would allow the "roadmap" process to continue. The statement was verified by Hamas leaders such as Mohammed Ghazal, a Hamas militia official, who stated that Hamas may be willing to amend its charter to recognize Israel, saying, "The charter is not the Quran." Ghazal went on to state that while he agreed with Hamas's positions, "we're talking now about reality, about political solutions ... The realities are different."[67]

Rice told February 28, 2008 that Hamas rocket attacks against Israel "need to stop," demanding an end to the escalating violence that has rocked the Gaza Strip and set back efforts of the United States to promote a Middle East peace deal.[68]Rice arrived in Cairo, Egypt, March 4, 2008, in the latest diplomatic effort to revive a Middle East peace process sidetracked by violence between Israelis and Palestinians.[69]Rice was scheduled to meet with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on March 5, 2008.[70]


2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict

Rice delivers a special briefing on Middle East Peace in the State Department Briefing Room, July 21, 2006.In mid-July 2006, the Middle East peace process encountered a new obstacle on a different front when Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon launched rocket attacks into Israel and ambushed Israeli convoys, kidnapping two soldiers and killing three, sparking what has become known as the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict. Rice immediately condemned the act, calling Hezbollah a "terrorist organization" and saying that the action "undermines regional stability and goes against the interests of both the Israeli and Lebanese people," specifically calling on Syria to "use its influence to support a positive outcome."[71] That day, Rice was one of the first to speak directly to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni concerning the incident. Israel initiated aerial bombardments against Lebanon on July 13 and sent in land troops on July 23 to take out rocket launching sites that were shelling Northern Israeli cities, as well as to look for and recover the two kidnapped Israeli soldiers.

During the conflict, Rice supported Israel's right to defend itself from Hezbollah attacks, she repeatedly cautioned Israel to be responsible in minimizing collateral damage. Before the major fighting began, Rice demanded that both Israel and Lebanon "act with restraint to resolve this incident peacefully and to protect innocent life and civilian infrastructure." She also continued to pressure Syria to take a more active positive role throughout the crisis, accusing Syria of "sheltering the people who have been perpetrating these acts" and calling on it "to act responsibly and stop the use of its territory for these kinds of activities[,] to bring all pressure on those that it is harbouring to stop this and to return these soldiers and to allow the situation to be de-escalated."[72]


Rice, former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi work to lay the foundation for Resolution 1701, which ultimately imposed a ceasefire on the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict.When Rice arrived in the Middle East in July 2006, one of her first moves was an unannounced visit to Lebanese Prime Minister Siniora to praise Siniora's "courage and steadfastness" and show US support for the Lebanese people.[73] Rice stated that the conflict was part of "the birth pangs of a new Middle East," stating that Israel, Lebanon, and the international community had to "be certain that we're pushing forward to the new Middle East not going back to the old one."[74]

At a time when progress appeared possible in the region, the Israeli military launched an airstrike on a suspected Hezbollah hideout in Qana, Lebanon, that killed 20-60 civilians. The airstrike seemed to sour support for Israel's endeavor and Lebanon cancelled a visit by Rice as a result.[75] While the tragedy was a setback in the negotiation process, it seemed to be a turning point for Israel, who, afterward, began taking a path toward a cease-fire. Before Rice left the region on July 27, she was able to negotiate a 48-hour halt on Israeli air-raids.


Rice appears with former UN Secretary General Annan to announce the successful passage of Resolution 1701, which imposed a ceasefire on the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict.Rice returned to the Mideast on July 29, where the outlines of the ceasefire to come began to take shape. Rice demanded that the global community do what it could to ensure that the Mideast region would never again return to the "status quo ante." Rice saw the situation as an opportunity to create a new environment in which Israel and Lebanon could live in peace, and in which Lebanon could have full control over all its territories without Hezbollah acting as a "state within a state," being able to launch terrorist attacks on Israel. Building on the two resolutions that came out of the G8 Conference and the steps that had been taken at the conference in Rome, Italy in late July, Rice worked with other leaders at the United Nations to pass UN Security Council Resolution 1701 on August 11, 2006, which sought to resolve the crisis. The ceasefire went into effect on August 14. The ceasefire that Rice helped broker provided for a full cessation of hostilities, a Lebanese-led international force to take the place of the Israeli forces, the disarmament of Hezbollah, full control of the Lebanese government to Lebanon, and an absence of paramilitary forces (including and implying Hezbollah) south of the Litani River; it also emphasizes the need for the immediate release of the two kidnapped Israeli soldiers. Rice lauded the outcome and expressed pleasure that the hostilities in the area had been brought to an end. Though there were sporadic, but small, spurts of violence after the ceasefire took effect, it has ultimately sustained, while international peacekeeping forces began to replace Israeli forces. On October 2, 2006, the last Israeli forces were withdrawn, allowing the UN and the Lebanese military to take over.[76]

She had a 30-minute meeting with Walid Muallem, her Syrian counterpart on May 3, 2007 -- the first such talks at this level since 2005.[77]


Egypt
In February 2005, Rice abruptly postponed a visit to Egypt, reflecting displeasure at the jailing of a leading opposition figure, Ayman Nour. Nour, head of the liberal Tomorrow Party, was reported to have been brutally interrogated.[78] Nour was freed by Egyptian authorities in March 2005, and began a campaign for the Egyptian presidency.[79]

In June 2005, Rice addressed democracy in the Middle East at the American University in Cairo. She stated: "There are those who say that democracy leads to chaos, or conflict, or terror. In fact, the opposite is true. ... Ladies and Gentlemen: Across the Middle East today, millions of citizens are voicing their aspirations for liberty and for democracy ...demanding freedom for themselves and democracy for their countries. To these courageous men and women, I say today: All free nations will stand with you as you secure the blessings of your own liberty"[80]

Nour finished second in Egypt's presidential race, held in 2005. In December 2005, Egypt imprisoned Nour on forgery charges that were disputed by human-rights groups. In February 2006, Rice visited Hosni Mubarak yet never spoke Nour's name publicly. When asked about him at a news conference, she referred to his situation as one of Egypt's setbacks. Days later, Mubarak told a government newspaper that Rice "didn't bring up difficult issues or ask to change anything."[81] Mohammed Habib, an Egyptian Brotherhood official, stated: "Hamas's victory made the U.S. take a contrary position to promoting democracy in Egypt and favor a hereditary succession."[82]

In 2005, Egypt acknowledged that the US had transferred 60 detainees to Egypt as part of the war on terror. In 2007, Amnesty International reported that Egypt had become an international center for interrogation and torture for other countries.[83]

The second largest recipient of US Foreign Aid is Egypt, with $1.8 billion scheduled for fiscal 2006.[84] Edward Walker, former ambassador to Egypt noted "Aid offers an easy way out for Egypt to avoid reform. They use the money to support antiquated programs and to resist reforms."[85]


Rice shakes hands with former Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom in a July 2005 visit to Israel.Rice has worked in the Middle East, including Israel, the Palestinian territories, and its immediate neighbors, especially Lebanon. Rice has supported Israel, defended Israel's right to protect itself, and promoted the "roadmap for peace," which includes the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian state. On August 29, 2006, she stated that the Middle East "should be a Middle East in which there is a Palestinian state in which Palestinians can have their own aspirations met, one that is not corrupt, one that is democratic, [and] one in which there is only one authority."[86]


Saudi Arabia
In May 2005, Rice indicated that many Mid East states would "have to answer their people's call for genuine reform. " She said "[a]nd even Saudi Arabia has held multiple elections."[87] In April 2007, the New York Times reported that "more than half the decisions made by the councils have not been carried out. Most of the others have been in support of the central government."[88]

In November 2005, the State Department issued a report critical of restrictions on religion in Saudi Arabia, noting among other things that all citizens were required to be Muslims. Rice has not sanctioned Saudi Arabia, saying she wants "additional time for a continuation of discussions leading to progress on important religious freedom issues."[89] Criticisms in the report include a 2002 incident in which Saudi religious police stopped students from leaving a burning building because they were not wearing mandated Islamic dress; 15 schoolgirls perished.[90]


Iran
Though the US does not hold formal diplomatic relations with Iran, Rice has been quite entrenched in issues pertaining to Iran, especially in regards to its democratic progress and humanitarian record, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's threatening statements toward Israel, and its pursuit of nuclear technology.

Rice criticized Iran's human rights record and democratic principles. On February 3, 2005, Rice said the Iranian regime's treatment of its people is "something to be loathed." She also stated: "I don't think anybody thinks that the unelected mullahs who run that regime are a good thing for either the Iranian people or for the region."[91]

In October 2005, Ahmadinejad stated that "Israel must be wiped off the map,"[92] to which Rice responded: "When the president of one country says that another country should be wiped off the face of the map, in violation of all of the norms of the United Nations, where they sit together as members, it has to be taken seriously." Rice then went on to name Iran as "probably the world's most important state sponsor of terrorism," whose people live "without freedom and without the prospect of freedom because an unelected few are denying them that."[93]

In February 2006, Rice addressed the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and called for funding to aid democratic reform in Iran through television and radio broadcasting, through helping pay for Iranians to study in America, and through supporting pro-democracy groups within the country.[94] Senator Boxer expressed concern that the administration appeared surprised when radical Islamist Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was elected president of Iran, when Iranian affiliated groups won a majority in Iraq, and when the militant Hamas won a majority. Rice said that the Bush administration should not be blamed for trouble areas and said that the burden was on Hamas to change.[95]

In recent years, Iran has also begun to pursue nuclear technology through uranium enrichment, which has been one of the most pertinent issues that Rice has dealt with during her tenure at the State Department. Iran maintains that its nuclear program only seeks to develop the capacity for peaceful civilian nuclear power generation.[96] Rice, along with other nations, has contended that Iran's record of sponsoring terrorism and threatening the safety of other nations, along with its defiance of its treaty obligations, of the United Nations Security Council, and of the International Atomic Energy Agency, have not proven Iran to be responsible enough to conduct uranium enrichment without outside supervision. Under Rice, the official State Department consensus on the matter is that "[t]he United States believes the Iranian people should enjoy the benefits of a truly peaceful program to use nuclear reactors to generate electric power ... [and] support[s] the Iranian people's rights to develop nuclear energy peacefully, with proper international safeguards."[97]

On September 9, 2005, Rice declared the refusal of Iran to halt its nuclear program unacceptable and called on Russia, China and India to join in threatening United Nations sanctions, and on June 2, 2006, a committee of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany, announced their plan to convince Iran to cease its nuclear activities. Rice represented the United States in the negotiation of the diplomatic initiative.[98]

On February 14, 2006, Iran restarted its uranium enrichment program despite calls from the international community not to do so. Iran's traditional foe, Iraq, offered no resistance because Iraq's leadership had been transformed to Shiite control. Rice responded by asserting that "[t]here is simply no peaceful rationale for the Iranian regime to resume uranium enrichment." Speaking on behalf of the United States and the European Union, Rice said they were "gravely concerned by Iran's long history of hiding sensitive nuclear activities from the IAEA, in violation of its obligations, its refusal to cooperate with the IAEA's investigation, its rejection of diplomatic initiatives offered by the EU and Russia and now its dangerous defiance of the entire international community."[99] In May of 2006, Rice came up with a new approach for dealing with Iran: direct negotiation between Iran and the United States (alongside their European allies) and the possibility for "a package of economic incentives and some kind of longer-term relationship with the United States" in exchange for the suspension of uranium enrichment within Iran.[100] Iran responded by saying that it will "never give up its legitimate rights, so the American preconditions are just unacceptable."[100]

On July 12, 2006, Rice, along with the foreign ministers of China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the European Union, announced that, as a result of Iran's refusal to suspend their uranium enrichment program, they had agreed to seek a UN Security Council Resolution against Iran under Article 41 of Chapter VII of the UN Charter.[101] Article 41 gives such a resolution the power to interrupt or sever Iran's economic, transportational, telecommunicative, and diplomatic relations.[102]

Though the United States and Iran disagree on key issues, the State Department has offered aid to Iran on many different occasions.[citation needed] After a deadly earthquake struck the Iranian province of Lorestan in March of 2005, Rice offered humanitarian aid to the country during a visit to England. Rice said her "thoughts and prayers" were with the victims.[103]

Rice said on April 30, 2007 that she does not rule out talks with her Iranian counterpart, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki.[104] On May 3, 2007, Rice "exchanged pleasantries" with Mottaki.[77]

Most recently, a letter alluding to Iran which was addressed to U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from the Head of Government of Puerto Rico, Aníbal Acevedo Vilá, accused the United States of having deceived the United Nations and the international community in 1953, when it succeeded in having the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico recognized as a provisional decolonized status subject to continued monitoring; Acevedo-Vila claimed that it was ironic that this is the position taken by the Government of Iran and that the Governor of Puerto Rico may soon feel forced to publicly accept Iran's claims regarding the US government's alleged-hypocritical position with regards to Puerto Rico's "colonial status".[105][106]


Iraq
In January 2000, Rice addressed Iraq in an article for Foreign Affairs magazine. "As history marches toward markets and democracy, some states have been left by the side of the road. Iraq is the prototype. Saddam Hussein's regime is isolated, his conventional military power has been severely weakened, his people live in poverty and terror, and he has no useful place in international politics. He is therefore determined to develop WMD. Nothing will change until Saddam is gone, so the United States must mobilize whatever resources it can, including support from his opposition, to remove him."[107]

In August 2003, Rice encouraged rejection of "condescending voices", who say that Africans and Middle Easterners are not interested in freedom and are "culturally just not ready for freedom or they just aren't ready for freedom's responsibility." She continued: "We've heard that [blacks aren't ready] argument before, and we, more than any, as a people, should be ready to reject it. The view was wrong in 1963 in Birmingham, and it is wrong in 2003 in Baghdad and in the rest of the Middle East."[108]

In October 2003, Rice was named to run the Iraq Stabilization Group, to "quell violence in Iraq and Afghanistan and to speed the reconstruction of both countries."[109]

In August 2003, Rice compared experiences in Iraq to post-War Germany stating that "the road we traveled was very difficult. 1945 through 1947 was an especially challenging period. Germany was not immediately stable or prosperous. SS officers -- called 'werewolves' -- engaged in sabotage and attacked both coalition forces and those locals cooperating with them -- much like today's Baathist and Fedayeen remnants." Daniel Benjamin responded, stating that in "practice, Werwolf amounted to next to nothing."[110]


Rice meets with former Iraqi Prime Minister al-Jaafari in June 2005.In June 2005, Rice stated: "And at each phase, more Iraqis are involved in this process. Sunni and Shia and Kurds and other Iraqis are concentrating politically on building a united Iraq. That is why I think the insurgency must think that its last days are eventually going to come because the Iraqis are turning to their politics to serve their future.[111]

On September 30, 2005, Rice declared that the Iraq War was "set out to help the people of the Middle East transform their societies."[52]

In 2005, when asked how long US troops will stay in Iraq, Rice said, "I don't want to speculate. I do know that we are making progress with what the Iraqis themselves are capable of doing. And as they are able to do certain tasks, as they are able to hold their own territory, they will not need us to do that." Rice further added, "I think that even to try and speculate on how many years from now there will be a certain number of American forces is not appropriate."[112] Rice stated: "I have no doubt that as the Iraqi security forces get better -- and they are getting better and are holding territory, and they are doing the things with minimal help -- we are going to be able to bring down the level of our forces." "I have no doubt that that's going to happen in a reasonable time frame."[113]

Rice lauded Iraq's voter turnout and peaceful transition into a sovereign government in 2005, and compared the reconstruction of Iraq to that of Europe after World War II. Rice wrote:

"Iraq ... in the face of a horrific insurgency has held historic elections, drafted and ratified a new national charter, and will go to the polls again in coming days to elect a new constitutional government. At this time last year, such unprecedented progress seemed impossible. One day it will all seem to have been inevitable. This is the nature of extraordinary times, which former Secretary of State Dean Acheson understood well and described perfectly in his memoirs. 'The significance of events,' he wrote, 'was shrouded in ambiguity. We groped after interpretations of them, sometimes reversed lines of action based on earlier views, and hesitated long before grasping what now seems obvious.' When Acheson left office in 1953, he could not know the fate of the policies he helped to create. He certainly could never have predicted that nearly four decades later, war between Europe's major powers would be unthinkable, or that America and the world would be harvesting the fruits of his good decisions and managing the collapse of communism. But because leaders such as Acheson steered American statecraft with our principles when precedents for action were lacking, because they dealt with their world as it was but never believed they were powerless to change it for the better, the promise of democratic peace is now a reality in all of Europe and in much of Asia."[114]

In 2006, Rice compared US commitment in Iraq to the Civil War, indicating "I'm sure there are people who thought it was a mistake to fight the Civil War to its end and to insist that the emancipation of slaves would hold." BET.com commented "If you're against the war in Iraq, you might as well consider yourself pro-slavery, according to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice."[115]

On January 11, 2007, Rice addressed the Senate Foreign Relations Committee regarding the President's Iraq Strategy. Rice asserted that insurgents were mainly responsible for American casualties; Senator Chuck Hagel stated, Madame Secretary, your intelligence and mine is a lot different.[116] Senator Benjamin Cardin asked Rice troop increases were adequate given the state of the Iraqi conflict. Rice responded "if you were trying to quell a civil war, you would need much larger forces" but that the augmentation was appropriate for the mission.[117]

In January 2007, the National Intelligence Estimate was issued; key judgements included: "The Intelligence Community judges that the term civil war does not adequately capture the complexity of the conflict in Iraq, which includes extensive Shia-on-Shia violence, Al Qaeda and Sunni insurgent attacks on coalition forces, and widespread criminally motivated violence. Nonetheless, the term civil war accurately describes key elements of the Iraqi conflict, including the hardening of ethno-sectarian identities, a sea change in the character of the violence, ethno-sectarian mobilization, and population displacements."[118]

In February 2007, it was reported that Rice encouraged lawmakers to support President Bush's troop increase by saying it would be a mistake to micromanage the Iraq war.[119]

In December 2007, Rice made her eighth visit as Secretary of State to Iraq, making an unscheduled stop in Kirkuk before proceeding to Baghdad, where she called on Iraqi leaders to urgently implement a national reconciliation roadmap.[120]

On January 15, 2008, Rice took a detour to Baghdad from a Middle East trip with President Bush, where she congratulated Iraqi leaders. She said the process of reconciliation was coming along "quite remarkably." At a news conference, she welcomed a decision to let Saddam Hussein supporters return to government jobs, saying: "A democratic and unified Iraq is here to stay. And while it may have challenges, it has passed through some very difficult times and is now moving forward in a way that is promising, yet still fragile." Rice's visit came as Iraq's defense minister told the New York Times he envisioned US security help until 2018 or later.[121]


China
Rice criticized the Chinese government April 3, 2008 for sentencing human rights activist Hu Jia to jail and said the United States will launch new human rights talks with Beijing.[122]


North Korea

Rice, in a July, 2005 press conference, announces that North Korea has agreed to return to the Six Party Talks.Rice has focused international attention on North Korea's nuclear weapons program. Beginning in 2003, a series of talks featuring China, North Korea, South Korea, the United States, Russia, and Japan, dubbed "The Six Party talks," have been aimed at denuclearization.

On February 10, 2005, North Korea withdrew from the talks after President Bush's 2005 State of the Union Address, in which he stated that North Korea's nuclear program must be dismantled and pledged to go on the offensive against tyranny in the world.[123] North Korea complained that the United States harbored a "hostile policy" toward their country and stated that they were permanently withdrawing from the Six-party talks.[124] In the following months, there was uncertainty over whether Rice could convince Kim Jong-Il to re-enter the negotiations, but in July 2005, North Korea announced that they had been convinced to return to the discussion.

After the first phase of the 5th round of talks, which took place November 9-11, 2005, North Korea suspended its participations in the negotiations because the United States would not unfreeze some of its financial assets in a Macau bank.[125] Rice has consistently called for the regime to return to the talks. On May 1, 2006, Rice stated that North Korea needs "to return expeditiously to the talks without preconditions, to dismantle its nuclear programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner, and to cease all illicit and proliferation activities."[126]

On June 19, 2006, matters with North Korea were further complicated when it finished fueling an intercontinental ballistic missile that the regime said it would test fire. North Korea had previously self-imposed a missile-firing moratorium, but threatened to launch the missile anyway. Rice stated that "it would be a very serious matter and indeed a provocative act" for the North to follow through on the act, and that if the North decided to do so, "it would be taken with utmost seriousness."[127]

On July 5, 2006, North Korea test-fired seven rockets, including the infamous Taepodong-2,[128] sparking international backlash. Rice, in a press conference held on the same day, stated that she couldn't even begin to try to judge what motivated the North Koreans to act in such a way. Rice felt that North Korea had "miscalculated that the international community would remain united [in their opposition to the missile test-firing]" and "whatever they thought they were doing, they've gotten a very strong reaction from the international community." Following the missile test, the United Nations Security Council held an emergency meeting and strongly condemned the actions, though no official sanctions resulted at the time.[129]

Then, in early October 2006, North Korea claimed that it was preparing to test a nuclear explosive device.[130] While the rumors could not be substantiated by satellite surveillance beforehand, the test was actually carried out on October 9, 2006 with only twenty minutes warning.[131] The nuclear detonation test was, purportedly, in response to the United States's decision to not hold direct bilateral talks with the regime, as well as America's increasing pressure on the government, which North Korea claims is evidence that the United States wishes to attack or invade their country. Rice disputes North Korea's claim that the nuclear test was committed to deter America from invading, saying, "We shouldn't even allow them such an excuse. ... It's just not the case. ... [T]here is no intention to invade or attack them. [T]hey have that guarantee."[132]


Rice meets with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Busan, South Korea to discuss North Korea.Rice has also repeatedly offered direct negotiations with North Korea in the context of the Six Party Talks, but she has held her ground in her decision not to hold bilateral talks with the dictatorship, stating, "We've been through bilateral talks with the North Koreans in the 1994 agreed framework. It didn't hold. ... The North Koreans cheated [by] pursuing another path to a nuclear weapon, the so-called 'highly enriched uranium' path. ... [I]f [Kim Jong-Il] wants a bilateral deal, it's because he doesn't want to face the pressure of other states [nearer to him] that have leverage. It's not because he wants a bilateral deal with the United States. He doesn't want to face the leverage of China or South Korea or others."[132]

Following the nuclear test, Rice made numerous calls to foreign leaders to consolidate support for taking punitive action against North Korea. Rice was able to draw condemnations from even some of North Korea's closest defenders, including China, who admitted the test was "flagrant" and "brazen."[133] On the same day as the nuclear detonation, the United Nations Security Council convened another emergency meeting, where a clear consensus was apparent in favor of sanctions against the regime, with even China saying that it supported punishing the regime,[134] changing its position from July, 2006, when it vetoed any sanctions on North Korea following its missile tests. On October 14, 2006, Rice worked with allies to pass a UN Security Council resolution against North Korea that demanded North Korea destroy all of its nuclear weapons, imposed a ban on tanks, warships, combat aircraft and missiles in the country, imposed an embargo on some luxury items that government officials enjoy while the general populace starves, froze some of the country's weapons-related financial assets, and allows for inspections of North Korean cargo.[135] Rice called the resolution "the toughest sanctions on North Korea that have ever been imposed" and hailed the unanimous passage of the sanctions, which even North Korean-friendly China supported.[136]

But Nobel Laureate and cold-war nuclear strategist Thomas Schelling criticized Rice for organizing a punitive response, when she should have encouraged Taiwan, South Korea and Japan to reaffirm the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.[137]

While Rice consistently affirms that the United States will not preemptively invade, attack, or topple the North Korean regime, she emphatically assured Japan during an October 18, 2006, visit that "the United States has the will and the capability to meet the full range -- and I underscore full range -- of its deterrent and security commitments to Japan," which many have interpreted to mean that America would not hesitate to use its military might should North Korea attack one of America's allies.[138]


Japan
Rice expressed hope February 27, 2008 that the arrest of a U.S. Marine on suspicion of raping a 14-year-old girl on the southern Japanese island of Okinawa would not damage Washington's relations with Tokyo.[139]


Russia

Rice speaks with Russian President Vladimir Putin during an April 2005 trip to Russia.In April 2005, Rice went to Russia to meet President Vladimir Putin. On the plane trip over, she related comments critical of Russia's democratic progress to reporters. "Trends have not been positive on the democratic side," said Rice. "There have been some setbacks, but I do still think there is a considerable amount of individual freedom in Russia, which is important."[140] In person Rice told Putin: "We see Russia as a partner in solving regional issues, like the Balkans or the Middle East."

In late 2005, there was a dispute between Russia and Ukraine after Russia decided to quadruple the price of energy being provided to the Ukrainian market[141] (Ukraine was receiving heavily subsidized prices for gas from Russia, the increase would have made the price equal to that of the current market price).[142] Rice subsequently criticised Russia's actions, accusing Russia of using its gas wealth as a political weapon. She called on Russia to behave as a responsible energy supplier and stated that the act did not show the international community "that it is now prepared to act ... as an energy supplier in a responsible way." Rice insisted, "When you say you want to be a part of the international economy and you want to be a responsible actor in the international economy, then you play by its rules ... I think that kind of behavior is going to continue to draw comment about the distance between Russian behavior and something like this and what would be expected of a responsible member of the G8."[143]

Though there was some question over whether or not Rice could convince Russia not to block the United States's move to refer Iran to the United Nations Security Council in early 2006 (because of Russia's economic and diplomatic ties to Iran), Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov eventually called Rice to confirm that Russia had agreed to allow the move.[144]

In February 2006, Rice described the United States's relationship with Russia as "very good," saying, "In general, I think we have very good relations with Russia. Probably the best relations that have been there for quite some time. We cooperate in the war on terror. We cooperate in a number of areas. Obviously we have some differences, too. But on the Iranian situation, we've actually had very good cooperation with the Russians."

In February 2007, Putin criticized US plans to expand European missile defenses. "Who needs the next step of what would be, in this case, an inevitable arms race?" Putin also characterized US military action as illegitimate, indicating "They bring us to the abyss of one conflict after another. 'Political solutions are becoming impossible.[145] Rice soon responded ""Everybody understands that with a growing Iranian missile threat, which is quite pronounced, that there need to be ways to deal with that problem and that we are talking about long lead times to be able to have a defensive counter to offensive-missile threats"[146] In April 2007, Rice indicated that Russia's concerns over the missile defense system were "ludicrous;" Putin responded by suggesting imposing a moratorium on an arms control treaty that NATO countries had long refused to ratify.[147]


Equatorial Guinea
Rice has worked to support and expand relations with the oil-rich African nation. In April 2006, Rice welcomed dictator-President Obiang to a press conference and stated, "You are a good friend and we welcome you." The welcome was extended 35 days after the State Department issued a report noting instances of "torture, arbitrary arrest, judicial corruption, child labor, forced labor, and 'severe restrictions' on freedoms of speech and press."[148]


Kenya
During a six-day tour of the African continent in February 2008, President Bush directed Rice, who was with him, to break off to go to Kenya, where Kofi Annan, the former United Nations secretary general, was trying to broker a power-sharing deal. A senior administration official said that the main purpose of Rice's trip would be to step up pressure on Kenya's president, warning him that he risked losing American support if he did not compromise. The message, the official said, was, "If you can't make a deal, you're not going to have good relations."[149]


Venezuela

Rice discusses American-Venezuelan relations at the CARICOM Ministerials in March 2006.The Bush administration has been particularly critical of the leadership of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, and brands the country an "outlaw country in the drug war."[150] During Rice's confirmation hearings, she commented on Chávez: "We are very concerned about a democratically elected leader who governs in an illiberal way, and some of the steps he's taken against the media, against the opposition, I think are really very deeply troubling."

Venezuela actively campaigned for a non-permanent seat in the 2006 United Nations Security Council election. Rice, however, directed a global lobbying campaign by US envoys in foreign capitals, contending that Venezuela did not belong on the Security Council.[151] On November 1, after 47 rounds of deadlocked voting, Panama was selected as a compromise.[152]

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 8:03 PM | Report abuse

I fully realize that politics as practiced in this as well as many other countries has devolved into PT Barnum'esque' theater. Even at that, proposing Condilieza as anyone's VP candidate seems at first pale to be quite a stretch, even given our rapidly deterioriating standards. But,hey, what do I know? I had a bracket with UNC going all the way. So much for foresight. B

Posted by: bldlcc | April 7, 2008 8:01 PM | Report abuse

WHO IN GOD'S NAME WOULD SERIOUSLY CONSIDER CONDY RICE, WHO HAS GOT TO BE, ONE OF THE WORST SEC. OF STATES' TO GRACE THOSE HALLS-EVER-TOTALLY, TOTALLY INEFFECTUAL, HAS ACCOMPLISHED ABSOLUTELY NOTHING, BUT HAS SCREWED UP A NUMBER OF THINGS (not the least of which was her involvement with Benazir Bhutto-to get her to come back to Pakistan-and you saw how that turned out, even after she was indicted, Rice was talking to her on the phone, to convince her to come back and "save" Pakistan!).

Rice has not done ONE DAMN THING to further US foreign policy interests anywhere in the world. The ONLY person who has been doing that, and doing a pretty darn good job is the President himself-AND HIS NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISOR, STEPHEN HADLEY-IT IS HADLEY WHO IS MAKING THE KNOW-NOTHING, SKATING ALONG IN HER FANCY ITALIAN FOOTWEAR RICE LOOK GOOD, HADLEY AND SOME OF THE FOREIGN SERVICE DIPLOMATS-BUT AS FAR AS RICE GOES-SHE HAS DONE ZILCH, NADO NIENTE! SHE CAN'T GET HERSELF BACK TO STANFORD SOON ENOUGH, I SAY!

Posted by: Arrabbiato | April 7, 2008 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Please, please, GOP, put her on the ticket!!!

It would cinch the already sure thing that the Republican party will be voted into oblivion this November.

Oh, by the way, can ANYONE out there tell me one single significant contribution to the common good that Condi has made in the past eight years?

This woman is a master of self-promotion and it shows in this absurd chit-chat about her running for VP.

Posted by: reporter1 | April 7, 2008 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Warren Christopher was nothing to write home about either.

Posted by: Jesse | April 7, 2008 7:38 PM | Report abuse

"I think what she is considering is focusing on her work as Secretary of State because -- you may have missed it -- but there's actually quite a bit to do," McCormack said. "There's quite a bit left to do here as secretary of State."

I'll say there's a lot of work to do. If she had done her job as NS director and as SoS, we wouldn't be in such a mess and there wouldn't be a need for such a big clean-up. How do you spell Failure? C. O. N. D. I.

Posted by: thebob.bob | April 7, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Actually, I believe that most historians agree that Robert Smith was the worst Secretary of State -- Madison issued an unprecedented "Memorandum" with a laundry list of Smith's shortcomings -- from which post Smith was forced to resign on April 1, 1811 ; )

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Is this a sign that McCain, NOT Rice, is the one NOT interested in a Rice as VP talk?

OsiSpeaks.com

Posted by: KYJurisDoctor | April 7, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Good, for once I agree with Ms. Rice.

Posted by: Frank Johnson | April 7, 2008 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I hope she is the VP nominee. It further would confirm McBush's 3rd term, and add a huge dead weight like Rice. She's the most incompetent Sect. of State in US History, and she'd fit perfectly with Grandpa McCain. Hilarious.

Obama is going to win by a landslide.

Posted by: poggy | April 7, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Condolezza Rice will not run for Vice President because she chooses to keep her private life private. Put differently, she is a lesbian and very much out of the closet to close friends and colleagues in Washington. However, she decided long ago not to make her personal life public, and will avoid campaigning for office for this reason.

Posted by: Vincent | April 7, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

While I can understand why republicans would like to add a black female to the ticket this year, I don't think she would allow herself to be used that way. As a woman, a person of color, and a highly successful person I would hope she has more self respect than that.

Posted by: Seth | April 7, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

Not only does she identify with the war in Iraq while serving as Nat'l Security Advisor, but with all the lies that were propagated in the run up to it. And who can forget when she testified before the 9/11 commission the lack of candor that was exhibited, to the point of where she came off looking inept in her job, and having done the president a disservice.

Posted by: tydicea | April 7, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

Boy could the democrats get so lucky that McCain makes Ms. Rice his running mate. She is an awful choice, but I cannot imagine McCain making such a big mistake.

McCain is either going to choose Romney, or somebody from a battleground state. Just as a matter of strategy, the winner of the Democratic primary should have some bearing.

If Obama wins, I would choose Huckabee or somebody else from the south. Obama's going to lose Fla. and Ohio, but might win states like Missouri, Tenessee, Virginia (I kid you not look at Mark Warner's numbers, the Dems might win this one) Arkansas, and Louisianna (not so sure after katrina though).

If Hillary is the candidate, the election is all about Ohio and Florida again. McCain will need to bring in someone either from one of those states, or someone who is perceived to understand the economy like Romney.

Posted by: DCDave | April 7, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Of course she's a great American. And, I'm sure she does want to return to Stanford (I mean, who wouldn't?), but if called to serve her country as Vice-President, I doubt she could turn McCain down. Anymore than if something should tragically happen to Bush, Cheney, Pelosi and Byrd (all at once), could she refuse to serve as President of the United States. The Office is greater than any one man (or woman).

Posted by: JakeD | April 7, 2008 6:35 PM | Report abuse

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