Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas made heartfelt promises to work together for the sake of their peoples, while King Abdullah of Jordan expressed the dramatic urgency gripping a region whose frustrations over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict "feed hatred and ignite wars."
And Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak? He offered logistics.
When the talks fell apart amid Israeli and Palestinian intransigence, it wasn't Egypt's fault. But any future American ambitions for peace in the Middle East will hinge on the nature of the government in Cairo that emerges from the current tumult, as will Israel's future strategies for peace and security with its neighbors and a host of other key Western goals in the region.
"Egypt is not just another country in the Middle East," Shibley Telhami, the Anwar Sadat professor for peace and development at the University of Maryland and a past participant in American policymaking, wrote today. "It has been the anchor of the U.S. approach to the region since the 1970s, and what happens in Cairo will inevitably have consequences."
It's unclear just what will happen in Egypt, where Mubarak today was still clinging to power despite the street-borne opposition that in a matter of days has seemed to eclipse the president as a political force.
Omar Suleiman -- Mubarak's intelligence chief and newly appointed vice president, as well as the Egyptian official who worked most closely with the U.S., Israel and Palestinians on peace -- said today that the president authorized him to open talks with opposition leaders.
What is clear is that the stakes are huge.
Since 1978, when Mubarak's predecessor, Anwar Sadat, signed a peace treaty with Israel, Egypt has had the United States' back in the Middle East.
As Egypt received more than $600 billion in aid in the three decades since then, the government of Mubarak -- who became president after Sadat was assassinated in 1981 -- became what White House spokesman Robert Gibbs today described as "a source of stability in the Middle East."
The cold peace and a demilitarized Sinai Peninsula allowed Israel to reduce its military spending and focus more of its attention on other enemies but also on its own development. Any change of heart for the leadership of Egypt -- which boasts the strongest armed force in the Arab world -- would have existential consequences for its one-time enemy.
But Egypt's long-held alliance with the West is far broader than its coexistence with Israel.
Since Sadat switched from a political affiliation with the Soviets to partnership with Washington in the 1970s, Egypt has helped to bolster the U.S. standing in the eastern Mediterranean and across the Arab world on many fronts, notes George Friedman, the head of private political-intelligence provider Stratfor.
In the past decade, the importance of that relationship only grew.
"The support of Egyptian intelligence after 9/11 was critical in blocking and undermining al-Qaida," Friedman wrote. "Were Egypt to stop that cooperation or become hostile, the U.S. strategy would be severely undermined."
But with Egypt now in a state of uncertainty, an apparently nervous Syrian President Bashar Assad gave a rare interview to The Wall Street Journal describing the protests in Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen as the start of "a new era" for the Middle East.
Gibbs, repeating the dominant U.S. line of recent days, emphasized that the Egyptians will have to determine the fate of their government.
And as that happens, everyone else will be closely watching.