Some pundits have declared that the mere fact of so many of Israel's sworn enemies agreeing to attend is a major concession in that the Arab states' willingness to attend the conference is an implicit recognition of Israel's legitimacy as a nation state. I must respectfully disagree.
The results achieved by such gatherings are a mixed bag indeed, especially when not preceded by the decisive military defeat of one of the conferees. The European peace conference at Versailles subsequent to the Great War resulted in what could be termed Act II recommencing in September of 1939 due to the Central powers not suffering a decisive defeat. The Allies, attempting to achieve through diplomacy what they failed to achieve on the battlefield virtually assured the resumption of hostilities as soon as Germany was able to recover. The diplomatic gymnastics "ending" the Korean war, Suez 1956, Six Day war 1967, Vietnam 1973 are only a few examples of diplomacy failing to resolve conflicts between sworn enemies.
It is telling that the Palestinian Arabs launched their operation "Autumn Storm" rocket attacks on the Israeli towns of Sderot and Nahal to coincide with the convening of the Conference. Could it be that they sense that Israel is negotiating from a weakened position due to the inconclusive recent round of fighting with Hezbollah as well as the U.S. President pulling back from recent guarantees of Israel's security?
It must surely be something in the water supply at the White House that results in presidents from Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and both Bushes to persist in the folly of forcing Israel to make concessions to the regional Arabs in the hope of being left in peace when each such concession only results in additional conflict.