Disappearing Act at Foggy Bottom

The State Department's influence continues to wane

"He spends eight hours a day in there being frustrated," says an aide, pointing to Secretary of State George Shultz's wood-paneled inner office. Frustration, of course, has long been an occupational hazard at the State Department, but Shultz has recently had more than his share. Not only on Central American questions but also on arms control and Middle East policy, Shultz has been losing influence to National Security Adviser William Clark and other hard-line presidential advisers.

The Washington-wise Shultz, an unscarred veteran of Cabinet posts in the Nixon Administration, took over twelve months ago from the...

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