"Just because there is a right-wing government in Israel does not mean that we should chuck in the towel." That is what King Abdullah of Jordan said in an interview with a leading British news paper ahead of a trip to Damascus on Monday.

Now Binyamin Netanyahu, the head of that right-wing government, is in Egypt to talk peace with Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president.

Netanyahu is said to want to take advantage of the current tension between Egypt and Iran to build a coalition, including the so-called moderate Arab states, against Iran.

But with the Israeli prime minister so far refusing to publicly endorse the creation of a Palestinian state and Egypt urging him to clarify his stance on the two-state principle, just what could this meeting achieve? And how will the meeting affect both nations' alliance with the country that provides them with billions of dollars of aid every year - the US?

So, was the meeting merely an exchange of views among allies or an attempt by former enemies to score points with the new US administration?

Inside Story with guests Dick Diker, a senior analyst at the Jerusalem Centre for Public Affairs, Imad Gad from the Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo, and David Mack, a Middle East Institute scholar and former US ambassador, discusses.

This episode of Inside Story aired from Monday, May 11, 2009.

Source: Al Jazeera