Elliott Abrams - New White House Director of Middle Eastern Affairs

(New York Times) Steven R. Weisman - Administration officials say Abrams was picked for the Middle East and North Africa portfolio under Condoleezza Rice, the national security adviser, because a strong manager was needed and the previous director, Zalmay Khalilzad, had been preoccupied with the reconstruction of Afghanistan. Abrams's appointment thrilled those who had criticized the administration for being too tough on Israel and too deferential to the Palestinians. Associates say he is likely to side with those who say the road map pressed by Secretary Powell does not make it sufficiently clear that Arafat must be removed, and that terrorism must cease entirely, before Israel makes any irretrievable concessions on withdrawal from Palestinian territories.

2002-12-09 00:00:00

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