RealNews

Rice’s Tour of Mideast Yields Little Progress on Key Issues

It was a tough week for Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in the Middle East. On four issues pivotal to the future of the world’s most volatile region, U.S. diplomatic efforts made no visible progress or came up against unexpected resistance during her five-day tour, according to Arab and Israeli officials and analysts. On Iraq, Arab-Israeli peace, democracy promotion and fostering a so-called moderate bloc of Arab states to stand together against militancy, Rice pressed at each of six stops for new energy or more decisive action. Many of the Arab leaders she met share U.S. fears about the region’s future, but there is a growing divide even with Washington’s closest allies over what needs to be done, at what pace, in what order and by whom, according to Arab officials interviewed at each stop. Full Story

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