President Bush's reference Friday to economic hardship caused by the gulf crisis hits home in this ancient city, which has become a favorite of European and American tourists.

Here's a sampling of the problem:- In a hotel just outside Damascus Gate of old Jerusalem: "We usually have 35-40 percent occupancy (this time of year). This month we will be lucky if we have 1 percent," the hotel sales manager said, looking over a deserted lobby.

- A shop owner, specializing in popular tourist items such as olive-wood carvings: "My business? It is zero."

- The operator of a bus-tour company, standing in front of more than a dozen idle buses: "No tourists."

- Richard D. Hall