Q Mr. President, as you mentioned, you know, as you approach the end of your term in office, you mentioned that you still feel that establishing the Palestinian state is still achievable. What is the exact vision that you have, you know, with this short time left?First, you notice that Bush must have his head where the sun don't shine and the air ain't clear because otherwise he would know that the Israel/Palestine situation is so bereft with conflict and years of aggressions that it won't be solved in 10 months. Hell, it hasn't been solved from the outset of the establishment of Israel. What makes him think that simply by having "Condi over there" that it will get done.
THE PRESIDENT: Sure, I appreciate it. First of all, 10 months is a long time. May seem short to you, but it's -- there's plenty of time to get a deal done.
Secondly, I have visited with the leaders, you know, on a one-on-one basis quite frequently, and I understand that it's -- this is a difficult subject. But I also feel very comfortable with the commitment they have made to try to work out subjects that have been difficult for other leaders to work out in the past.
The role of the United States -- we can't impose peace. We can help leaders come to agreement and come to the table and make hard decisions. We can help facilitate the bridging of gaps, if there are gaps. And that's exactly what our diplomacy is in the process of doing.
And by the way, there is -- and one of the reasons why His Majesty is so important in this process, as the other leaders in the Middle East, including my close friend, King Abdallah of Saudi Arabia and President Mubarak of Egypt, is that both these leaders are going to need the support of the Arab world in order to make tough decisions. But first it's up to them. And so I'm optimistic that they can conclude tough negotiations. And we'll try to facilitate that.
Second, if we "cannot impose peace" on any nation, why did we go into Iraq in the first place? Really, as more GIs return with mental as well as physical wounds and the number of flag draped boxes get flown for burial in Arlington, the rationale seems less and less legit for having done it.