The flight from Newark to Tel Aviv is remarkably easy. Leaving at 2300, they serve a good dinner, turn out the lights and you wake over the Mediterranean with Orthodox passengers preparing for morning prayers and flight attendants bringing breakfast. Quite a pleasant flight. We arrived at Ben Gurion as the sun was setting on Thursday. Wonderfully warm weather. Balmy.
I've asked everyone I've met what they think of the American election. At the cell phone store, they thought it not so good for Israel. "They say he's a Muslim". Same with the driver of our minibus into Jerusalem. "I liked McCain ... he goes straight at things" (hand gestures). I drove in, though, with a particularly happy and friendly collection of Jews from London who all thought it was "brilliant" and that Sarah Palin was an idiot. One woman confessed she wanted Hilary, but she's pleased enough just to be rid of George. Today (Friday), all the Palestinians I met on the West Bank were delighted with Obama and then very wary of his selection of Rahm Emanuel as chief of staff. When asked who won the election, Estephan Salameh's 4 year old niece said "OBAMA" (her emphasis).