Dr. James Zogby, president of the Arab American Institute, sees a hopeful sign as some US Congressmen and Senators press for a ceasefire in Lebanon. In an article published in The Palestine Chronicle, Zogby expresses the view that a small but still significant sign of change is occurring in the discussion of the war on Lebanon.

Not only Democrats, but Republicans as well, are criticizing the Bush administration’s lopsided support for Israel in the conflict. This would have been unthinkable even a few weeks ago.

In the United Kingdom as well, there is movement as more English parliamentarians voice their dissent from the official government argument. More than 150 Members of Parliament (MPs), including a fifth of Labour’s parliamentary party, yesterday joined forces with 17 charities, including Oxfam and Amnesty International, to urge the recall of parliament to discuss the crisis in .

Lawmaker Jim Sheridan, a member of the ruling Labour Party said he was stepping down as a parliamentary private secretary to the Ministry of Defense.. "I can no longer support our government’s close relationship with the US and their objectives for the Middle East," he wrote in a resignation letter to Blair which his office released.

Sheridan criticized the stopover at a British airport last month of two flights carrying missiles to Israel. Sheridan criticized "the government’s position of calling for restraint on both sides of the current conflict in whilst facilitating the refueling of aircraft in our country carrying real weapons of mass destruction."

A group of anti-war campaigners yesterday claimed to have broken through security at Prestwick airport and boarded a plane. Campaign group Trident Ploughshare said five activists boarded a US Air National Guard plane just after midnight.. Strathclyde police confirmed a number of arrests had been made. Throughout the week groups have been arrested at the same airport, bent on the same mission – to stop the planes from refueling and the missiles from reaching Israel.

In the United States, Congressman John Murtha, one of the most respected members of the Congress, issued a personal call for a ceasefire as did Senator Chris Van Hollen, a Democrat who wrote a letter to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, urging her “to call for an immediate ceasefire".

Polls are showing that the public is confused. While it is a given that the public supports Israel, a solid majority now say that they believe Israel “ has gone too far” in its assault on Lebanon. A majority also expresses deep concern that the continuing conflict could lead to a wider war. Almost two-thirds of Americans disapprove of the way the Administration is handling the situation, also reflecting the public’s dissatisfaction with Bush’s handling of Middle East and foreign affairs, in general. . Politicians are beginning to respond to the public’s concerns.

Senator Chuck Hagel (R-NE), considered one of the most thoughtful analysts of ’s Middle East policy.said, as quoted in the Zogby article,
 "How do we realistically believe that a continuation of the systematic destruction of an American friend, the country and people of Lebanon, is going to enhance America’s image and give us the trust and credibility to lead a lasting and sustained peace effort in the Middle East? President Bush must call for an immediate cease fire. This madness must stop.”

Hagel also warned of the dangers inherent in an American Middle East policy which continued to support Israel at the expence of its Arab and Muslim relationships, characterizing it as an irresponsible and dangerous false choice.

Additionally, Senators Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), issued strong statements calling for an immediate ceasefire.

The Senate passed, by unanimous consent, a new resolution on , correcting its previous one-sided efforts.  Sponsored by Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) and other Democratic Senators, the resolution, while repeating some of the provisions of the first Senate bill, which favour Israel, adds language that calls for a cessation of hostilities, an international donors conference, and new support for the Lebanese government.

A group of 18 Congresspersons authored a letter to President Bush urging him to call for an immediate ceasefire and expressing their concern for the suffering of the Lebanese people.