Michael Freund notes in an op-ed column for the Jerusalem Post that October 15, just a few days before Bush's meeting with Abbas, was the 2nd anniversary of the murder of 3 Americans by Palestinian Arabs terrorists when they blew up a US diplomatic convoy in Gaza:
TWO YEARS ago, John Branchizio, 37, of Texas; John Linde Jr., 30, of Missouri; and Mark Parsons, 31, of New Jersey, all died in Gaza as a direct result of Palestinian terror. They are among the more than 50 American citizens murdered by Palestinian terrorists since the signing of the Oslo accords, and none of their killers have yet to pay for their actions.[emphasis added]
...Just five days prior to the bombing, Palestinian television broadcast a sermon delivered in Gaza in which the preacher threatened "destruction for the United States" and noted ominously, "From this place [i.e. Gaza] we warn the American people that this president is dragging them to the abyss." Likewise, in another broadcast four weeks earlier, a Palestinian spokesman declared, "We will defeat America as long as it supports our enemy... we consider America to be our No. 1 enemy."
And lest one think that the Palestinians have been doing all they can to track down the killers, here is what the late PA military intelligence chief Musa Arafat told Reuters in September 2004: "Palestinian security forces know who was behind the killing of three Americans in Gaza nearly a year ago but cannot act against the factions while fighting with Israel continues."
...The vehicles targeted all had diplomatic license plates, and were traveling on a road that was closed to Israeli traffic, so it was obvious the attackers knew whom they were hitting, and that it was a methodical and intentional assault. [see also Washington Times editorial]
Another point of interest raised by Freund is that on October 15, the day before the 2 year anniversary, Bush signed another waiver of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1987:
President Bush extended a waiver to the congressionally mandated downgrade in the status of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Office in the United States with an October 14 memorandum to the secretary of state.
The waiver is effective for 180 days.
The downgrade of the PLO office was mandated in the Anti-Terrorism Act of 1987. Implementation of that provision of the law has been delayed because of U.S. national security interests, according to the memorandum. [emphasis added]
I can understand how someone can rationalize the delay of the implementation of the The Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act (synopsis) to move the US embassy to Jerusalem because of "national security interests", but to claim that it is in the national security interests of the US to not downgrade the status of the terrorist PLO offices--that's bizarre.
It's one thing for Bush the politician running for office in 2000 to promise to move the embassy to Jerusalem--politicians make all kinds of promises, even in good faith, and once elected realize that there are things that they promised that are just not practical. But to allow the murder of Americans by Palestinian terrorists during his administration to go completely unanswered, to the extent that the only action he does take is delay measure that would in some way signify American displeasure is just aggravating. It casts doubts on both his moral as well as political compass and makes one wonder just what Bush thinks his legacy is going to be.