Condi Rice makes her play for the title of worst Secretary of State ever:
The Washington Note: Paul Richter of the Los Angeles Times has this comment from the Brzezinski dinner in his latest on Condi Rice's diplomatic effort:
Rice said that Hezbollah, because of its attacks on Israel, had disqualified itself from any future role in the Lebanese government. However, they would have to find a way to give Shiite Muslims, Lebanon's largest group, a voice in government.
Rice is not planning to meet leaders of Syria or Hezbollah on this trip. The Syrians, who have strong influence over Hezbollah, have been contacted by many European and Arab countries and do not need a direct dialogue with the Americans, she said.
Others disagree strongly. Zbigniew Brzezinski, national security advisor to President Carter, said last week at a dinner sponsored by the New America Foundation that if Rice doesn't meet with leaders the administration does not approve of, her trip would amount to "sitting in front of a mirror, talking to herself."
"That's not diplomacy," Brzezinski said.
Rice also might face difficulties talking to U.S. allies in the region. Three major Arab countries -- Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia -- are important participants in the new effort to make peace.