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Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are together again for the first time in almost two years. How long will it last? What’s the role of Iran? How great is the risk for Obama? Also, another off-shore explosion in the Gulf of Mexico, and Britain's former Prime Minister Tony Blair was forced from office by his own party. We hear how his new memoir is being received in England. 

Banner image: President Barack Obama talks with Palestinian President Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu at the conclusion of a statement to the press in the White House, September 1, 2010. Official White House Photo: Chuck Kennedy

Making News Another Oil Rig Blows in Gulf of Mexico 7 MIN, 48 SEC

An offshore platform in the Gulf of Mexico exploded and caught fire today. All 13 workers are said to be safe, but one reportedly was injured. Ben Casselman, who has reported extensively on the BP disaster, is with the Wall Street Journal.

Ben Casselman, FiveThirtyEight (@bencasselman)

Innocent Abroad

Martin Indyk

Main Topic Another President, Another Try for Middle East Peace 36 MIN, 59 SEC

Secretary of State Clinton today formally opened the first direct talks in almost two years between Israel and the West Bank Palestinians. In a public ceremony, she addressed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Under non-stop pressure from the United States, the challenge is to resolve decades-long disagreements in the next year, but even advocates of a Palestinian state say failure could make matters worse. How far apart are they on settlements, borders, the "right of return" and the status of Jerusalem? Neither Abbas nor Netanyahu has much domestic support for historic compromise. Did they come together because of their worries about Iran?


Robin Wright, US Institute of Peace / Woodrow Wilson Center (@wrightr)
Martin Indyk, Brookings Institution
Yousef Munayyer, US Campaign for Palestinian Rights (@YousefMunayyer)
Yossi Beilin, former Israeli Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister
Scott Wilson, Washington Post (@PostScottWilson)

Dreams and Shadows

Robin Wright

Reporter's Notebook Tony Blair's Memoirs: Was He a Closet Conservative? 6 MIN, 12 SEC

book.jpgHe was Prime Minister longer than any other head of the Labour Party, but his colleagues forced him from office early and he was succeeded by Gordon Brown, who led the party to recent defeat. Tony Blair's memoir has appeared just as Labour is about to elect a new leader. A Journey: My Political Life was released in the US and UK simultaneously. The Los Angeles Times calls it "unique," the New York Times "chatty" and "inscrutable." How is it being received in England? John Freedland is a columnist for The Guardian.

Jonathan Freedland, Guardian newspaper

A Journey

Tony Blair

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