Madeleine Albright was the keynote speaker of the 88th International Convention of Phi Theta Kappa in Seattle last week. I expected her to be a better public speaker: her speech was monotone and the style was more of a press release than an address.

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Albright speaking at the 88th International Convention of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society in Seattle. 21 April 2006. One of the few things about Bush’s foreign policy that the former U.S. Secretary of State likes is the Millennium Challenge Compact, a major recipient of which is Armenia. Photo by me

Her statements, however, were well-judged and very bright. A particular anecdote she told us is still in my mind. When Iraq’s former president Saddam Hussein called Madeleine Albright, the U.S. Secretary of State at the time, a “snake,” the latter wore a snake pin while meeting the Iraqi ambassador.

Calling the Iraqi invasion “a war of choices,” Ms. Albright was confronted with the question whether there was anything in Bush’s foreign policy that she endorsed.

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Asked if there was something that she did wrong while she was the U.S. Secretary of State, Albright said, “Rwanda.” She said she was directed to vote “no” on sending U.N. troops to Rwanda while thousands of Tutsis were being butchered. Photo by me

Among three things that the first female (and immigrant) U.S. Secretary of State approves of Bush’s foreign policy is the Millennium Challenge Compact that supports developing countries to end rural poverty by providing large amount of grants.

As I have mentioned before, Armenia is one of the major recipients of the Millennium Challenge Compact.