The Palestinians / Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Avi Issacharoff - (Opinion) November 28, 2007 - 4:15pm

Minutes after Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert finished their speeches, Palestinian spokesmen rushed to the press room at Annapolis to lower expectations. Being well-versed in peace conferences that end with glorious fanfares but lead nowhere in practice, they warned that it is necessary to see whether the promises made at the conference are implemented on the ground.

Annapolis Diary / Who's In Favor Of Ending (israeli) Terrorism?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Haaretz
by Aluf Benn, Shmuel Rosner - (Opinion) November 28, 2007 - 4:14pm

1. If there is a need for proof that nothing changes in Israeli-Palestinian relations, the joint declaration should suffice - the one that was signed a few minutes before President George W. Bush went to the podium and only after Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice put a little pressure on Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. If proof is needed to show that much has changed, then the whispering between Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Abbas - a moment after Abbas finished his speech and Olmert took the floor - is proof of this.

To Talk Peace
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jordan Times
(Editorial) November 28, 2007 - 4:11pm

Iran and Hamas most vociferously attacked the Annapolis peace conference, describing it as a futile effort to settle the Palestinian question, one that follows in the footsteps of previous similar moves, including the Madrid peace conference, which failed to deliver. Before a clear idea about the outcome of the peace conference that was kicked off on a positive note yesterday crystallises, thus apportioning blame or praise, a few remarks about the two above-mentioned entities would be in order.

The Annapolis Summit Has Already Affected The Arab World
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Asharq Alawsat
by Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed - (Opinion) November 28, 2007 - 4:09pm

 We expected the US-sponsored international peace summit in Annapolis, to trigger intra-Arab conflicts as usual. Interestingly enough, this meeting has healed wounds, some of which have been bleeding for years on various fronts. It is an odd phenomenon that contradicts all possibilities on the table. I have observed the following developments so far:

If The Conference Fails, What's Plan B For Peace?
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Daily Star
by Daoud Kuttab - (Commentary) November 28, 2007 - 4:07pm

American officials usually spend enormous energy highlighting the "process" in the Middle East "peace process." Only in the last 18 months of a second-term president or following a military engagement in the Middle East does the United States actually start to concern itself with "peace."

Keep The Cynics At Bay
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Guardian
by Daniel Levy - (Commentary) November 28, 2007 - 4:02pm

Theories abound as to why an Annapolis conference and why now. Jerry Seinfeld would be excused for thinking that this is all a personal conspiracy against him - his visit to Israel was dominating the headlines until Annapolis came along. In fact some in the Israeli media have been drawing a rather unflattering analogy: the Annapolis conference resembles a Seinfeld episode - it's about nothing. Yada yada yada.

Annapolis: The End Of The Beginning
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Bbc News
by Paul Reynolds - November 28, 2007 - 4:00pm

That was the easy bit. Now for the hard work. All the old unresolved issues have to be tackled - the borders of Israel and the new state of Palestine, Jerusalem, Israeli settlements, Palestinian refugees. A pessimist, a realist maybe, can look at the target date for an agreement - December 2008, the end of the Bush presidency - and say that the agenda is too large and the room for manoeuvre too little for success to be likely, let alone assured. The concept is to create a critical mass of opinion that will enable the centre ground to be held.

Us Turns To ‘coalition Of The Moderate’
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Financial Times
by Daniel Dombey - November 28, 2007 - 3:58pm

As almost 50 delegations assembled for the Annapolis conference on Tuesday, one question stood out. Why was the Bush administration, which had once scorned Bill Clinton’s efforts to broker Middle East peace, risking a high-profile attempt of its own, despite near to rock bottom expectations? “You can make the case that in an attempt to shoot the moon and get nothing, more violence resulted,” Ari Fleischer, then President George W. Bush’s spokesman, said in 2002 of Mr Clinton’s Camp David negotiations two years before.

The Major Breakthrough: Bush Agrees To Arbiter Role
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA)
by Ron Kampeas - November 28, 2007 - 3:56pm

The most striking concession to emerge from the Palestinian-Israeli talks this week came neither from the Israelis nor the Palestinians, but from the Bush administration. The United States agreed to become the sole arbiter of peace agreements between the sides -- not only an about-face from a seven-year policy of "let the sides duke it out," but an unprecedented venture into waters even the hyper-involved President Clinton feared to enter.

Israel, P.a. Agree To Strive For Accord By End Of 2008
ATFP World Press Roundup Article from The Jewish Daily Forward
by Barak Ravid - November 28, 2007 - 3:55pm

Israel and the Palestinian Authority agreed Tuesday to immediately launch peace negotiations in order to reach an agreement by the end of 2008, President Bush said in his remarks at the Middle East peace conference in Annapolis, Maryland. Prior to his prepared address, Bush read a joint statement agreed on by the sides during last-minute negotiations at the summit.

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