Though I think it is a little too late to start making like they are worried about an Israeli/Palestinian peace accord now, it is encouraging that Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal has agreed to attend the hastily thrown together peace summit in Annapolis;

Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations decided Friday to attend next week’s US-sponsored Middle East peace conference, but the Saudi foreign minister insisted he would not allow “theatrics” like handshakes with Israeli officials, saying the gathering must make serious progress.

Participation by Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal was a key goal of the United States to show strong Arab support for the conference in Annapolis, Maryland, which is to relaunch Israeli-Palestinian peace talks for the first time in seven years. Until Friday, the kingdom had balked at saying whether it would attend and at what level, seeking assurances Israel would negotiate the most difficult issues of the Arab-Israeli conflict in negotiations governed by a timetable.

The Bush administration’s last minute play for the history books may achieve some kind of results after all.  The question now is if Secretary Rice is up to the task.

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