Why would the New York Times choose to publish an attack on Susan Rice ("a surprising and unsettling sympathy for Africa's despots") in its Sunday edition? The Times turned over prized op-ed real state to Salem Solomon ("an Eritrean-American journalist who runs Africa Talks, a news and opinion Web site covering Africa and the global African diaspora"), who signaled the UN Ambassador that a nomination to be Secretary of State would not be a bed of roses. Just in case she felt that going on those five Sunday shows and playing a meat puppet mouthing whatever she was told to say about Benghazi deserves some sort of reward.
I see it as a sign that President Obama has decided that confirmation hearings for Rice would be so politically costly that he would be better served by another nominee. Right now, it appears that former Senator Chuck Hagel, a Republican, is being test marketed. Rice is getting the message indirectly that her reward for loyalty is being deferred.