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.
Will the Senate write a healthcare bill in secret? While Democrats and Republicans argue White House relations with Russia, another question is being decided behind closed doors: who gets help buying health insurance and who doesn't? We hear how the pros and cons are being shrouded in secrecy.
Trump's new look at civil rights and global warming President Trump is reportedly ready to pull the US out of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. We look at the possible consequences. On the second half of the program, we hear about cuts in Obama-Era civil rights programs called for by the Trump Administration's first budget plan.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?