One of the men is the Bush administration’s most bitter foe, who spent tens of millions of dollars trying to prevent the president's election and who still supports strident anti-Bush organizations like Moveon.org.
The other is the president’s handpicked envoy to the United Nations, one of the Bush administration’s most sensitive posts.
On the surface, they were not likely to have much to talk about.
So what were billionaire George Soros and U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Zalmay Khalilzad discussing Tuesday when they met for a secret lunch at a luxurious but discreet restaurant close to the United Nations?
Nobody but the two men knows.
They met together for roughly 90 minutes after arriving at the restaurant separately, Khalilzad with a Secret Service escort.
They also left separately, several minutes apart: Khalilzad in his official black Cadillac, Soros in a flashier red Mercedes-Benz.
Maybe it was the spirit of the Annapolis peace conference that drew the men together.
Or perhaps the media attention on Annapolis was one reason they hoped their lunch would go unnoticed.
Asked to comment on the lunch meeting, Ben Chang, Deputy Spokesman of the U.S. Mission to the U.N., said, "The ambassador meets with a number of people in his official and personal capacity."
Chang declined to comment any further on details of the meeting, including questions as to why the meeting took place, who arranged it, what they ate and who picked up the check.