Clinton Graces Gaza

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GAZA STRIP: Those truculent Republicans back home haven't dulled Bill Clinton's appetite for compromise. The two occasions that marked Clinton's day among the Palestinians -- his historic touchdown at the new Gaza International Airport and, later Monday, the Palestinian National Council's formal removal of the kill-all-Israelis clause from its charter -- were a package deal first proposed by Clinton at Wye last October.

"Clinton's landing at the airport was an important gesture to the Palestinians," says TIME Mideast correspondent Lisa Beyer. "And it gave Arafat the political cover to give Netanyahu what he wanted: a new meeting of the assembly to alter the charter." More compromise may be in the air: The White House announced that a Clinton-Netanyahu-Arafat meeting would be held early Tuesday morning. But Netanyahu still isn't ready for the land-for-peace process to start up again: He'd like to see the Palestinians publicly drop plans to declare themselves a state in May. It's a lesson Clinton might have learned from last Friday's sorrowful offering to GOPers: Give 'em an inch...