JOEL ROSENBERG has many good links and updates from the Middle East. From Cairo. Meanwhile, John Romero asks, Did we get sucker punched in Cairo?
FT.com opines Friday on President Obama's speech to the Muslim world:
Even before the speech, there were signs that thanks to his personal appeal, the US’s battered image in the Arab world was starting to improve. There were also hints that in Iran, for example, Mr Obama was perceived by the regime as more threatening than George W. Bush because of his ability to present a more moderate face of America.
But the speech also poses risks for Mr Obama. While he addressed masterfully the conflicting pressures the US faces in the region, he will find translating them into coherent policies far more challenging, if not impossible.
Mr Obama called for a joint effort to create a world where extremists no longer threatened Americans, US troops returned home, Israelis and Palestinians lived in secure states of their own, and nuclear energy was used only for peaceful purposes. It is an ambitious vision that would transform the Middle East, but it raises expectations far beyond the US’s ability to deliver.
As an American citizen and observer of history, I have to say the president continued his charm tour in the Middle East with typical and eloquent appeal and trademark attractiveness. It was a good speech (Joel has excerpts above if you click the link.) that makes you walk away feeling good. We love those warm fuzzies, don't we? And the Obamas are nothing if not warm fuzzy-making machines to those they deem fuzzible (I just invented a new word.)
While there may be new-found goodwill with some Arab/Muslim nations and their leaders as a result of this trip, and I hope and pray there is, have to say that extremist terrorists who are mass killers for Islam will not be the slightest affected by Obama's charm. If anything, they'll recommit themselves to wrecking much more havoc as soon as they can.
Words are important. Yet, how the president puts his words into action and some sort of US domestic and foreign policy will be most important test. If this leads Obama to continue to diss our American roots, our history as a Christian nation and our recent experience with Islamic jihad, then he may win a battle with Arabs/Muslims for a short time but lose the war---in more ways than one--especially with the American people.