FROM Hazem Abu Shanab
War or Peace in the Middle East? Condoleezza Rice is back in the Middle East , where continuing rocket fire has Israel threatening more attacks on Gaza. In Ramallah today, the Secretary of State asked Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to re-open peace talks he cancelled because of Israel's military incursion into Gaza. Although Israel has pulled out, Abbas, also known as Abu Mazen, refused Rice's request, saying he first wants to mediate a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas. But Israel and the US are opposed. Can Secretary Rice get the Annapolis peace process back on track?
Bush Calls for New Summit after Olmert-Abbas Meeting in Jerusalem After a summit meeting today between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, President Bush called for a regional conference , chaired by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice , to resume the peace process. He offered US support to the new government in the West Bank with further efforts to isolate Hamas, which now controls Gaza. What about the divided authority between the West Bank and Gaza? Can there be peace with just part of the Palestinian Territories? Do Israelis still believe that peace is a realistic objective? We hear from Washington, Jerusalem and Gaza.
Two Palestines? After a week of fighting that killed at least 100 people, an "uneasy calm" is reported today in the Gaza Strip. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has appointed a new prime minister, but Ismail Haniyeh says he still holds that office. In any case, Haniyeh's Hamas faction now has total control in Gaza, with Abbas' authority now limited to the West Bank.
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
After Syria strike a new Trump doctrine emerges The President who promised an end to entanglements in the Middle East and snuggled up to Vladimir Putin has now outraged Russia with surprise missile attacks on Syria. That's raised questions about who's running the White House? We hear a variety of answers.
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.