Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had planned to visit China this week in order to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of establishment of ties between the People’s Republic of China and the United States, but events in the Middle East have caused a delay in her travel. However, Rice said at this point she had not plans to travel to the Middle East. The president of China, Hu Jintao, urged that a diplomatic solution be found to halt the fighting in Gaza and restore peace to the region. Israel tanks and soldiers continued their push into Gaza while Hamas vowed to kill the invaders.
The foreign policy of the Bush administration in the Middle East has always been rather confusing. One would think that Secretary of State Rice’s primary focus at this time is working to immediately end the fighting and bring peace to the Middle East, but, aside from Bush remarks that Israel had a right to defend itself, the United States has remained rather silent on this matter. Hopefully, in the coming weeks, the United States will have a secretary of state who wings her way to the Middle East and focuses on discussions and compromise.