Contrasting Perspectives on the Continuing Middle East Crisis

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Night has fallen in the Middle East, and there's no indication that tomorrow will see any reduction in violence. Nevertheless, despite orders to stay close to bomb shelters, Israelis near Tel Aviv reportedly flocked to the beach today. There's international talk, but no action, on how to reduce the deadly exchange of bombs and rockets between Israel and Hezbollah. At the G8 summit in Russia, Britain's Tony Blair expressed support for international peacekeepers on the Israeli-Lebanese border. Russia's Vladimir Putin said he might contribute troops. At the United Nations, Secretary General Kofi Annan supported the idea, but US Ambassador John Bolton had reservations. Annan has sent an envoy to Beirut with plans to go to Jerusalem, where Prime Minister Ehud Olmert made a formal speech to the Knesset. Earlier today, we talked with reporters in Jerusalem, Beirut, Damascus, Cairo and St. Petersburg about the continuing violence and hesitant steps toward a diplomatic solution. (This program was originally broadcast earlier today on To the Point.)

UN Secretary General Annan on stabilization force for the Middle East

Jacques Chirac on Middle East peacekeeping force

Tony Blair on "critical situation" in Middle East

UN Ambassador Bolton on violence in Lebanon

UN Resolution 1559 on the Middle East

Prime Minister Olmert's address to the Israeli Knesset



Warren Olney


Frances Anderton