How Bush Got Religion

The once disinterested President is now pushing peace in the Middle East. What changed his mind?

Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas seemed uncomfortable in the official meetings with his Israeli counterpart, Ariel Sharon, and President George W. Bush at their summit in Aqaba, Jordan, last week. So Bush stepped in and did what he does best: he schmoozed. Leaving aides and interpreters behind, the President took the two leaders outside, where they sat under the shade of palm trees for 40 minutes and discussed ways to give a fresh start to the peace process. "I wanted...to observe the interplay between the two," Bush said later. "Did they have the capacity to relax in each other's presence? I...

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