A Return to the Intefadeh?

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HEBRON: One day after President Clinton met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in search of common ground over the troubled Middle East relations, Hebron suffered its bloodiest riots in months as some called for a return to the Intefadeh. Jewish seminary students shot and killed one Palestinian, sparking five hours of fierce rioting in which Israeli troops fired tear gas and rubber bullets, killing two Palestinians and injuring dozens. While many on both sides believe the violence will continue unless the U.S. takes a more active involvement, Clinton said Tuesday he is not prepared to host a Camp David-style Israeli-Palestinian summit, as Netanyahu had suggested, or to make any other dramatic moves soon. "It is a tricky problem for Clinton," says TIME's Jef McAllister. "The prestige of the American president is something that needs to be uncorked carefully. You use it up and it's gone. It would be extremely risky for Clinton to call for a high profile meeting with both sides so untrusting of each other." Even if Clinton were to heave the weight of his position into the mix, McAllister adds, "There's not much the U.S. can do to make the Israelis and Palestinians want to make peace." While Arafat hurled invective at Netanyahu, Palestinians called out for a return to the leader who famously warned the U.N. not to let the olive branch of peace fall from his hand. During a funeral procession for the 23-year-old victim shot earlier in the day, mourners shouted down Palestinian Transportation Minister Ali Qawasmeh with a reprise of Arafat's speech to the U.N. more than two decades ago: "Let the olive branch fall," they yelled, "and the gun rise!"