- Making News: Democrats Won't Block Vote on Gonzales Nomination
A Senate Committee has taken up the nomination of Michael Chertoff to be Secretary of Homeland Security. He's testified that he'll balance tough tactics with protection of civil rights. Meantime, the full Senate is still debating confirmation of Alberto Gonzales to be Attorney General. Eric Lichtblau, who is covering that story for the New York Times, updates the nomination that Republicans are calling a true American success story.
- Reporter's Notebook: Pope John Paul II Hospitalized for Breathing Difficulty
The Vatican says there's no cause for alarm, even though 84 year-old Pope John Paul II will be hospitalized for the time being. Today, he missed his weekly audience for the first time since September, 2003, after last night being rushed to the hospital with what are described as "severe breathing difficulties." Beppe Severgnini, columnist for Corriere Della Sera, updates the health of the man who leads a billion Roman Catholics.
Another New Chapter in Middle East Peace
The leaders of Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to a summit meeting next week in Egypt, just after Condoleezza Rice makes her first visit to the Middle East as Secretary of State. Mahmoud Abbas has deployed Palestinian forces to stop attacks on Israel, and Ariel Sharon has called off the killings of militant Palestinian leaders, saying the stage is set for a "historic breakthrough." What about Israeli settlers in the West Bank and Gaza? How likely is violence between Israelis? Will that complicate the challenges faced by Secretary Rice? We hear from Israeli settlers and their polar opposites, journalists in the region, and veteran US diplomat who served in several Middle East posts.