The Cable

Ms. Rice Goes to Washington: July 1

It’s finally time for Susan Rice to clean out her New York office.  The Cable has learned that the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations begins her first day on the job as White House national security advisor on July 1. Meanwhile, the goodbye to staff for outgoing National Security Advisor Tom Donilon is a ...

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<> on June 5, 2013 in Washington, DC.

It’s finally time for Susan Rice to clean out her New York office. 

The Cable has learned that the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations begins her first day on the job as White House national security advisor on July 1.

Meanwhile, the goodbye to staff for outgoing National Security Advisor Tom Donilon is a week from Friday. Technically, his last day is on Saturday, June 29.

The national security advisor position doesn’t necessarily bring with it a fiefdom of underlings: Rice will presumably hire an assistant and an executive assistant — and there’s no sign yet that current National Security Council deputies, Tony Blinken and Ben Rhodes, are going anywhere. "Ben and Tony are very close with Susan," Tommy Vietor, former NSC spokesman, told The Cable recently.

Donilon, meanwhile, already tied a ribbon on this month’s major diplomatic event, President Barack Obama’s meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in California, and has been cruising Washington’s awards circuit.  On June 11, he delivered a speech at FP’s Diplomat of the Year award dinner honoring Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns and on June 12, Donilon was awarded the Asia Society’s Policy Achievement Award.

As for Rice, she’s about to have her hands full with peace talks in Afghanistan getting off to a rocky start, the bloodshed in Syria spiraling out of control and renewed domestic concerns over government surveillance. Welcome back to D.C., ambassador.

John Hudson is a senior reporter at Foreign Policy, where he covers diplomacy and national security issues in Washington. He has reported from several geopolitical hotspots, including Ukraine, Pakistan, Malaysia, China, and Georgia. Prior to joining FP, John covered politics and global affairs for the Atlantic magazine’s news blog, the Atlantic Wire. In 2008, he covered the August war between Russia and Georgia from Tbilisi and the breakaway region of Abkhazia. He has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, BBC, C-SPAN, Fox News radio, Al Jazeera, and other broadcast outlets. He has been with the magazine since 2013. @john_hudson

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