Thursday, November 15, 2007

Annapolis Conference Is Not Inspiring Confidence

Is this any way to run a peace conference?
US keeps people guessing as Mideast meet approaches

Just two weeks before an international Middle East conference in Annapolis, Washington has the world guessing about a gathering aimed at jumpstarting the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Officials have not yet announced the conference's exact date, its duration, described the level of representation or released an agenda, sowing doubts about its prospects and causing confusion among Washington's allies.

American, Israeli and European diplomatic sources have all said that the full conference will be held on Tuesday, November 27, following a dinner the previous evening.

But US State Department spokesman Sean McCormack refused again Wednesday to announce a date.

"We may have a date, but I'm not prepared to share it yet," he said, triggering laughter. "I'm not going to make any announcements about the Annapolis meeting. Invitations have not yet gone out."

McCormack refused to say why the government of US President George W. Bush, which in July announced plans for an Middle East conference in the autumn, was keeping details secret and risking the impression it was badly prepared.
We are way past just 'risking' the imprerssion that this entire attempt at a peace process is badly prepared.

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