But Ms. Rice did know at least a couple of things. She knew that she had nothing to do with Benghazi. She knew that after the attack the president insisted that U.S. leaders not “shoot first and aim later” but rather “make sure that the statements that you make are backed up by the facts.” She knew that the video story line was questionable, as Sen. Dianne Feinstein (chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence) and administration officials had already suggested publicly that the attack was al Qaeda-related. And she knew that the president had a political interest in asserting that al Qaeda wasn’t successfully attacking senior American officials but was instead “on the run,” as he maintained on the campaign trail.

Senators might therefore ask Ms. Rice why she was put forward to speak about Benghazi, and what part her personal ambition might have played in her willingness to assume the role known during the Cold War as “useful idiot.” …

Senators might also explore Ms. Rice’s broader record at the U.N. Why, for example, did she think it was appropriate to absent herself from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s September speech to the General Assembly, the purpose of which was to offer the global community a painstaking explanation of why Iran must be stopped before it can weaponize its growing stock of enriched uranium.