I don't particularly like the metaphor. But there is an elephant in the room...or, rather, an elephant in the closet. Ehud Olmert meets with the King of Jordan. Ehud Olmert meets with Mahmoud Abbas. Tsipi Livni meets with the president of Egypt. Condi Rice continues to build up frequent flyer miles to see anyone who will see her in the Middle East. Even the King of Saudi Arabia meets with random riff-raff, all sorts of riff-raff. Arabs are meeting each other in one country's capital and then another's.
Isabel Kershner and I do not exactly share the same politics on Israel. But she is an extraordinary and extraordinarily honest journalist. She has been the "Palestinian" correspondent of the Times for a while now, joining my good and admired friend Steven Erlanger (the head of its Jerusalem bureau) and Greg Myre in covering what may be the most emotionally laden beat in the world. She gets it.
"Palestinian Opposes Provisional State." That's the headline on a New York Times article by Thom Shanker and Grey Myre posted online yesterday. The Palestinian who opposes a provisional state is Mahmoud Abbas who wants a final settlement for a state on the 1949 cease fire lines, with 4 million Arab refugees having the right to "return" to 1949 Israel, and with Jerusalem as its capital. He is living in a world of fantasy. For God's sake, he can't even get his own people to agree about who is the Palestinian government and who is not.
FOR RUMMY, PLENTY OF TIME…FOR ABBAS, NONE TO SPARE COUNTER MEASURES Obituaries for Donald Rumsfeld's career have been prepared numerous times during his tenure as defense secretary.And yet Rummy has held on. For the last several months, the buzzards have resumed circling over his office, with rumors that he would depart after next year's Quadrennial Defense Review, a milestone on his quest to transform the military. But, when Thom Shanker and Eric Schmitt of The New York Times sought out Rumsfeld for a piece on his legacy, the 72-year-old secretary opined that "there will be plenty of time." T