I am an optimist. And there are several reasons for it: 1) The US-administration needs a peace agreement urgently. Because otherwise they will leave the whole Middle East in a mess, thousands of dead American soldiers and nothing in return. It would be a very heavy load for future generations of Republicans. 2) Syria and Lebanon are both so tired and worn out. They are willing to pay a high price just to be left alone. 3) Jordan, Saudi-Arabia, the Lebanese government and the Palestinians fear rising Iranian influence in the region. So they are willing to engage in serious peace talks. The only question is whether Olmert is willing to risk a peace agreement; after all, the rightist faction in his country (and his government) is vehemently against giving up the Golan and large parts of the West Bank. The looming alternative could be a horrible war. But peace is possible, now more than ever. And that would entail a blossoming and vital Israel. Let's hope for it!
Magnitude 6.1 quake hits Panama-Colombia border (Reuters)
from the article: The optimist and the pessimist