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Obama Speech in Cairo
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Obama Speech in Cairo - June 4, 2009, 08:04 AM


I feel the most important statement he made was "Let there be no doubt: The situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable and America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspirations for dignity, opportunity and a state of their own."

followed by... "Hamas does have support among some Palestinians, but they also have to recognize they have responsibilities, to play a role in fulfilling Palestinian aspirations, to unify the Palestinian people, Hamas must put an end to violence, recognize past agreements, recognize Israel's right to exist,"

Obama has definitely addressed more issues than his predecessor Bush. Bin Laden has recently been trying to counter Obama by using his name and Bush's together. Do you fell this is working? Is Obama reaching out and establishing peace?


Obama Seeks Common Ground, 'New Beginning' Between West and Muslim World

Obama delivers speech he had promised during the presidential campaign, aimed at reaching out to the world's 1.5 billion Muslims.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Highlighting his own Muslim roots and embracing Islamic culture, President Obama defined himself as the linchpin in a "new beginning" between the West and Islamic world.

The U.S. president delivered a sweeping, hour-long address Thursday in Cairo, aimed at reaching out to the world's 1.5 billion Muslims, an address he promised during the presidential campaign.

Obama's speech cycled through the most contentious of issues between and among Western and Islamic societies -- from Iraq to Afghanistan to democracy and religious freedom.

"I've come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world -- one based upon mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive, and need not be in competition," Obama said.

The president sought to highlight Muslim contributions to the modern world and stress common ground between his country and Muslim states, drawing heavy focus to his early life in Muslim Indonesia as well as his Muslim family members. He noted that while he is a Christian, his father came from a Kenyan family that "includes generations of Muslims."

Obama quoted the Koran and greeted the Cairo University audience with the Arabic, "assalaamu alaykum." He used his full name, Barack Hussein Obama. The audience applauded thunderously when the president cited lessons from the Koran and at one point someone shouted, "We love you."

Obama declared he has experienced Islam on three continents, which has shaped an attitude of tolerance toward its religion and culture.

"That experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn't. And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear," Obama said to applause. He said neither Muslims nor Americans, though, can fit the "crude stereotype" they are sometimes assigned.

He closed his speech by citing passages endorsing peace from Christian, Jewish and Islamic scripture.

"There is one rule that lies at the heart of every religion -- that we do unto others as we would have them do unto us. This truth transcends nations and peoples," he said.

Obama expressed regret for the U.S.-led war in Iraq -- a war he opposed when he was a state legislator -- and called it a reminder of the need to use diplomacy over force when possible. But he attempted to convince Muslims that the current conflict against extremists in Afghanistan and Pakistan is a worthy one, and their fight as well, though he said the U.S. does not seek a permanent presence in the region.

"In Ankara, I made clear that America is not -- and never will be -- at war with Islam," he said, referencing his speech to the Turkish parliament on his last overseas tour. "We will, however, relentlessly confront violent extremists who pose a grave threat to our security. Because we reject the same thing that people of all faiths reject -- the killing of innocent men, women and children. And it is my first duty as president to protect the American people."

He continued: "Islam is not part of the problem in combating violent extremism -- it is an important part of promoting peace."
As he addressed a series of sensitive topics, Obama handled one in a way sure to stir added controversy.

The speech included a message to Hamas, which the U.S. Department of State labels a terrorist organization, calling on the network to join the mainstream Palestinian coalition. "Hamas does have support among some Palestinians, but they also have to recognize they have responsibilities, to play a role in fulfilling Palestinian aspirations, to unify the Palestinian people, Hamas must put an end to violence, recognize past agreements, recognize Israel's right to exist," Obama said.

Plus Obama waded deeper into the debate over the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

The president, while calling the United States' bond with Israel "unbreakable" and shaming those who deny the Holocaust, continued to step up pressure on Israel's leadership to follow U.S. terms for a roadmap to peace. He called on Israel to stop constructing settlements in Palestinian territory and declared that Palestinian statehood is the only resolution to the conflict in the region.

"The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace," he said Thursday. "It is time for these settlements to stop."

In the days leading up to his address, the president's prior call for Israel to abandon all settlement construction drew criticism in the Jewish state, and had been rebuffed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Obama also called on Palestinians to abandon violence, comparing their struggle to that of blacks in South Africa and slavery-era America and suggesting only peaceful resistance would be productive.

And he condemned Holocaust denial as "ignorant" and "hateful," as well as other anti-Semitic rhetoric.

"Threatening Israel with destruction or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews is deeply wrong and only serves to evoke in the minds of the Israelis this most painful of memories while preventing the peace that the people of this region deserve," he said.

Obama spoke at Cairo University after meeting with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. He first traveled Wednesday to Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, where he met with King Abdullah.

From Egypt, Obama will head to Germany and France.

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June 4, 2009, 10:12 AM

Well the only thing I can say is I can't wait for people to start going nuts over this and bring up the Anti-Christ statements again. I applaud him for his efforts and I think this is definitely one of the best steps towards, not necessarily peace, but a better sentiment towards the US in that region. I didn't vote for the guy but I'm impressed by some of his actions for sure. I would like to highlight that I said SOME, not all.

ok, rant over

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June 4, 2009, 10:15 AM

stupid politician playing stupid political games...

Last edited by Bubbagums; June 4, 2009 at 10:20 AM..
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I don't like you
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June 4, 2009, 11:01 AM

let's all hug it out, that will solve the problems of the world

RIP Jeff Vega 10/06/09 You will forever ride on in our hearts
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June 4, 2009, 11:02 AM

basically what bubba said. We are going to shit here in the United States. Why cant he focus on internal issues?
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