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Bill Clinton In North Korea, Hillary Clinton In Kenya

In view of his hop-and-skip visit to North Korea, there is nothing but gratitude that we Americans should feel towards Bill Clinton. In view of other facts also, like not trying to upstage either his wife or our president on foreign policy.

The grinch Right has been trying to find some solace in the wake of Clinton's triumph.  Desperately trying. So John Bolton has published an op-ed in Tuesday's Washington Post. It is titled "Clinton's unwise trip to North Korea." Some countries write their citizens off casually. But America doesn't, and thank God for that. Still, the "negos" are stewing in their beer.

The preposterous New York Post had an even more preposterous lead editorial this morning arguing that the whole episode was "Gore's Gift to Kim." Why? Euna Lee and Laura Ling were employees of the former vice president's cable network, Current TV.  There is no real argument in the editorial.

What I think-and it's not easy for me to admit-is that Bill Clinton still possesses a certain celebrity magic, and it clearly worked even on the grim and brutal Kim Jong Il. Don't worry: Clinton gave nothing tangible or intangible away for the release of the young women.

And while I'm eating crow about Bill let me also eat crow about Hillary.

She told the harsh truth to the leaders of Kenya (and, by extension, to other African leaders) about corruption and underdevelopment. It was an argument similar to the one made by President Obama last month in his address to the Ghanian parliament.

So even the Wall Street Journal praised Secretary Clinton this morning in a lede aptly titled "Hillary of Africa."

And it went on:

The West has spent an estimated $2.3 trillion on foreign aid over the past five decades. Yet in a typical African country, one third of the children under five still have stunted growth due to malnutrition.

It's encouraging that the WSJ believes this is a worthwhile concern of ours. But it will not do just to put some more cash in the aid basket. It will certain be misappropriated.