The late February suicide bombing in Tel Aviv shattered a three-month lull in terror and brought key Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking issues into sharp relief.
The terror attack, which came just three weeks after Israeli and Palestinian leaders declared an end to more than four years of hostilities, forced both sides to define their new relationship more clearly.
It enabled Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to clarify his policy toward the Palestinians, finger Syria and the Hezbollah as potential spoilers, and re-emphasize his view that there can be no real peacemaking until the Palestinians dismantle their armed terrorists.
Rep. Porter Goss' distance from Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking was likely a plus in securing the nomination to lead the CIA.
In fact, Goss (R- Fla.), President Bush's choice to succeed George Tenet as intelligence director, is about as far from the CIA's peacemaking efforts in the Middle East as Tenet was close to it.