I am one who is very grateful that we have a Bush, not a Gore, for president in these perilous times. However, as regards this supposed "road map" to peace for the Israel/Arab conflict, the White House is in sore need of a little humility. The biblical prophet Zechariah warns: "And in that day [when all around besiege her] will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it." [Zech. 12:3]

We have had president after president make fools of themselves with personal peace initiatives for the Middle East. Based on that experience, and Zechariah's warning, the president should withhold the prestige of the White House and of the secretary of state, and leave Middle East diplomacy to the diplomats until the parties (especially the suicide bombers) demonstrate changed behavior over time.

Edwin H.Beus