Over two sessions, Mrs. Zavala and Mrs. Obama -- who are developing a warm relationship -- talked about drug addiction, underage Mexican migrants to the United States, diabetes and obesity. Childhood obesity is one of Mrs. Obama's issues.

With Washington's support, the Mexican government has been pursuing an aggressive multiyear campaign to confront criminal groups tied to the drug trade. To understand those efforts' chances of success, let's look beyond common misperceptions about Mexico's plight.

...Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will lead a delegation to Mexico tomorrow to talk with officials there about efforts to fight the mob violence that is being generated in Mexico by the war on drugs. U.S. recognition of this shared problem is healthy.

Calderón raised eyebrows, however, when, to emphasize his point, he mentioned Brazil, saying the emerging South American power is perceived abroad in far more favorable terms than Mexico, in part because its own citizens speak well of it.

Mexican President Felipe Calderon has called for the United States to share responsibility in the battle against drug traffickers in the two countries. His comments came on a one-day visit to the border city of Ciudad Juarez, where three people connected to the US consulate were killed on Saturday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent trip to Mexico (March 25-26) demonstrated, once again, the power of public diplomacy. The trip was a tour de force (with only one minor mishap) that opened a window of opportunity in a bilateral relationship that had become badly damaged. Prior to her trip, the mood toward the United States in Mexico was quite sour, the consequence of both Bush administration policies and recent developments.