Rice: Young Palestinians losing hope for deal with Israel

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told an American Jewish audience that young Palestinians are losing hope for an agreement with Israel. "Increasingly, the Palestinians who talk about a two-state solution are my age," Rice, 53, said Tuesday in a somber speech to The American Jewish Committee at its 102nd annual meeting. Insisting that the Bush administration will never yield to dealing with Hamas militants, Rice said, "What you don't want is that the hopelessness and the vision of the extremists have no counter." Set to leave early Thursday for more meetings with moderate Arabs and Israeli leaders, after talks in London designed to raise more economic support for the Palestinians, Rice called on Israel to make "difficult decisions" to provide the Palestinians with the dignity of statehood.