Magazine September 7, 2009, Issue

Hillary’s Innocence Abroad

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak at a hotel in Washington, D.C., August 17, 2009. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)
In Africa, Clinton offered sermons rather than diplomacy

Hillary Clinton’s eleven-day trip through Africa was an odd affair. The proximate reason for it was that Obama’s election awakened wholly unrealistic expectations throughout Africa that the new president would make African affairs one of his priorities. Then, en route from the G-8 summit, Obama visited Ghana to pat that country on the head for having emerged as a democracy. This created considerable jealousies in other African countries that felt they had a better claim on his attention — Kenya because the Obamas hail from there, South Africa because it is the continent’s most developed state, Nigeria because it is

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