Condoleezza Rice, who was secretary of state under US president George
W. Bush, will visit Israel next week for the first time since leaving
office in January 2009, to take part in a conference on home front
Rice, whose name has been mentioned as a possible Republican
vice presidential candidate for presumptive Republican candidate Mitt Romney, is
scheduled to meet with President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu during her stay.
Though Rice was close to Tzipi Livni when the
latter was foreign minister, it is not immediately clear whether the two will
Former prime minister Ehud Olmert cited Rice’s memoirs at the
recent Jerusalem Post Conference in New York when he accused Livni, without
mentioning her by name, of going behind his back to Palestinian Authority
President Mahmoud Abbas and telling him to wait for her to take over as prime
minister for a better peace offer.
Abbas never responded to Olmert’s
offer, and Livni never became prime minister.
In her memoirs, No Higher
Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington, Rice wrote about the Olmert proposal
and Abbas’s response: “Still, I worried that there might never be another chance
like this one. Tzipi Livni urged me (and, I believe, Abbas) not to enshrine the
Olmert proposal. ‘He has no standing in Israel.’” Rice, a political science
professor at Stanford, is also the head of a private consulting firm advising
Motorola, and will take part in a conference sponsored by Motorola Solutions
Sunday on “next generation solutions” for home front security. Among others
speaking will be Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon, outgoing Home Front
Defense Minister Matan Vilna’i, and Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav.
polls have indicated Rice is the favored vice presidential pick among Republican
voters, she told Fox News in March that Romney should look for “somebody who
really wants” to be in elected office.
“How many ways can I say it?” she
quipped. “Not me.”