Will America's Mideast Futility Continue?

Mideast generic image withh Israel and Palestinian flags, and Israeli tanks with a map of Israel in the background. 020312
This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.
The invitations have been sent, the place cards filled out. And son of a gun, everybody is showing up, including the Syrians and the Saudis.

So far the White House has been tamping down expectations for the Annapolis meeting on peace for Israel and the Palestinians. We should all hope for more. Remember the road map? It went nowhere. And now the problems grow more complicated.

The Israelis build walls to protect themselves, which only serve to further alienate the Palestinians who have watched dumbfounded as more and more of the West Bank has turned into Jewish settlements.

As the peace process has continued to languish, the reason so many Muslims hate the United States continues to grow. The United States is Israel's best friend. In their eyes, Israel drags its feet because America allows it.

If only the United States were really to lead the way to a two-state solution, the target on our backs would get much smaller.

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on many CBS Radio News affiliates across the country.