Obama’s Cairo speech: Surprisingly good

posted at 9:28 am on June 4, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

I didn’t get the chance to watch Barack Obama’s Cairo speech live, although I’m sure that it will be chopped up on YouTube within the next couple of hours.  Instead, I read the full text posted by Andrew Malcolm, as well as Andrew’s commentary, and in most ways, it wouldn’t differ from a similar speech given by any recent American President.  In fact, the Cairo audience may have been a little surprised about the depth of the defense of Israel’s right to exist in peace, as well as the strong denunciation of 9/11 Trutherism that has been wildly popular among Arabs, even though Osama bin Laden claimed credit long ago for the attack.

Not surprisingly, Obama emphasized the rights of Palestinians to live in their own state, which the Washington Post’s Howard Schneider reported via Twitter prompted a lot of head-nodding.  Obama added this scolding to Arab nations, though, that may have come as a surprise:

Finally, the Arab States must recognize that the Arab Peace Initiative was an important beginning, but not the end of their responsibilities. The Arab-Israeli conflict should no longer be used to distract the people of Arab nations from other problems. Instead, it must be a cause for action to help the Palestinian people develop the institutions that will sustain their state; to recognize Israel’s legitimacy; and to choose progress over a self-defeating focus on the past.

That was a not-so-subtle jab at the practice of various Arab and Muslim states to use the Palestinian issue to whip up anti-Israel sentiment for their own domestic purposes.  Egypt has diplomatic relations with Israel, but is not above doing some of that itself, which makes this jab a little more sharp, given the setting.  It seems a little surprising — and refreshing — that Obama would challenge this practice in a speech in Cairo.

Israel, Obama said, has to accept a two-state solution with real sovereignty.  Well, they have, on numerous occasions.  They’ve also withdrawn from Gaza; Obama appeared to blame Israel for the misery of the Gazans, rather than Hamas, who keeps launching wars against Israel.  Obama could have shown a little more backbone in pointing that out, and it seems like pandering to have avoided it.  However, he did instruct the audience about Israel’s right to exist:

America’s strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied.

Around the world, the Jewish people were persecuted for centuries, and anti-Semitism in Europe culminated in an unprecedented Holocaust. Tomorrow, I will visit Buchenwald, which was part of a network of camps where Jews were enslaved, tortured, shot and gassed to death by the Third Reich. Six million Jews were killed – more than the entire Jewish population of Israel today. Denying that fact is baseless, ignorant, and hateful. Threatening Israel with destruction – or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews – is deeply wrong, and only serves to evoke in the minds of Israelis this most painful of memories while preventing the peace that the people of this region deserve.

Speaking of baseless, ignorant, and hateful, Obama tried to set the record straight on 9/11, and set a baseline for American security:

The situation in Afghanistan demonstrates America’s goals, and our need to work together. Over seven years ago, the United States pursued al Qaeda and the Taliban with broad international support. We did not go by choice, we went because of necessity. I am aware that some question or justify the events of 9/11. But let us be clear: al Qaeda killed nearly 3,000 people on that day. The victims were innocent men, women and children from America and many other nations who had done nothing to harm anybody. And yet Al Qaeda chose to ruthlessly murder these people, claimed credit for the attack, and even now states their determination to kill on a massive scale. They have affiliates in many countries and are trying to expand their reach. These are not opinions to be debated; these are facts to be dealt with.

Make no mistake: we do not want to keep our troops in Afghanistan. We seek no military bases there. It is agonizing for America to lose our young men and women. It is costly and politically difficult to continue this conflict. We would gladly bring every single one of our troops home if we could be confident that there were not violent extremists in Afghanistan and Pakistan determined to kill as many Americans as they possibly can. But that is not yet the case.

Most of the rest of the speech was standard boilerplate, heavy on the compatibility of Islam and America and historical examples going back to our founding.  Obama didn’t mention the Barbary Pirates, but he did note that the US has over 1200 mosques and claimed that almost 8 million Muslims live in the US.  That number is the subject of dispute; CAIR claims 8 million, but the CIA and other surveys put it at less than 2 million.  For the purposes of this audience, Obama used the highest number, apparently to make the biggest impression.

Did it work? Schneider says it only received light applause at the end, so perhaps Obama told a few too many hard truths for Egyptian tastes — which is why we questioned that decision.  On the whole, though, Obama defended American positions on Israel and Afghanistan with more strength than he does here at home.

Of course, the big question will be whether this does anything at all for our standing in the Muslim world.  Frankly, I doubt it; this may wind up eroding Obama’s standing instead.  Still, a much better effort than I’d feared.

Update: Yid with Lid strongly disagrees with me on Obama’s defense of Israel, so be sure to read all of his post.

Update II: I note on Twitter that plenty of people are upset with Obama’s quoting of the Koran and his positive spin on Islam, ie, “religion of peace,” “Golden Rule,” etc.  He is in Cairo, after all, and to quote an old aphorism, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.  Appealing to people’s better natures is a rhetorical device with a long history — and a long history of mixed results.  However, I don’t hear anything in this speech that Bush didn’t say himself.

Update III: I would also say that I didn’t see much apologizing for America in this speech, but that there was some; Obama mentions Gitmo and the 1950s coup d’etat in Iran.  Also, Michelle takes my point about the tenor of this speech sounding a lot like Bush’s, but she consistently objected to that in Bush’s speeches as well.


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Did he make any apologies for nasty old America?

Del Dolemonte on June 4, 2009 at 9:33 AM

He obviously had to walk a very fine line with this speech. From what I read it looks like he did a pretty good job. I’ll give him credit where it’s due.

But I’m also doubtful that it will accomplish anything, and will likely end up being one of his ‘historic’ speeches that no one can quote a line from 3 months down the road.

BadgerHawk on June 4, 2009 at 9:34 AM

Might I remind you, he also said whatever was necessary to win an election.

regal on June 4, 2009 at 9:35 AM

So, he tells them that there are 8 million Muslims in America after telling them that there are fewer than 6 million Jews in Israel…

I think that is going to be the al Jazzeria soundbite of the day. “The Great and Glorious Obama says that American Muslims will wipe out Israel!”

myrenovations on June 4, 2009 at 9:35 AM

We are a Muslim nation so I guess the speech was fitting..

Pam on June 4, 2009 at 9:36 AM

That was a not-so-subtle jab at the practice of various Arab and Muslim states to use the Palestinian issue to whip up anti-Israel sentiment for their own domestic purposes.

Too bad he won’t tell Sharpton, Jackson, Wright, NAACP, or the democrat socialists to stop doing the same thing with the race card here in America.

SouthernGent on June 4, 2009 at 9:36 AM

Obama’s Cairo speech: Surprisingly good, -Ed

‘ANY WORLD ORDER THAT ELEVATES ONE NATION OVER ANOTHER WILL FAIL’… -Hussein

This could only be said about a “world order” imposed upon nations. Hussein wants parity for the US and, what, Chad?

Man.

Akzed on June 4, 2009 at 9:36 AM

As long as there wasn’t any apologizing for the USA I can live with this one.

gator70 on June 4, 2009 at 9:36 AM

However, he did instruct the audience about Israel’s right to exist:

But as Yid with a Lid notes, he as careful not to say that it had a right to exist as a Jewish state.

That is what the Palestinains will not accept. They want a right of return so they can move enough Muslims back in, and given the demographics, the country will have minority of Jews in a generation. Then it merges with “Palestine” and “Israel” ceases to exist. The remaining Jews are treated as other infidels are in Muslim countries. Or worse.

Wethal on June 4, 2009 at 9:37 AM

Chas Hurt at the NYPost has the best analysis yet…

Link here.

But if world peace is attained by complimenting those on the other side into submission, he made some serious progress.

Obama really buttered them up in Cairo.

He thanked them for everything from algebra to the pen, though he curiously failed to mention that they often throw people in prison for using it.

He even went so far as to tell the audience that he considers “it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.”

Wow. That won’t be the last time you hear that line.

And anyway, where exactly is that in the oath of office he took?

kevinkristy on June 4, 2009 at 9:39 AM

The speech is already up in parts 1 2 3 and 4 on Foxnews.com/video.

therightscoop on June 4, 2009 at 9:39 AM

Published before the speech:

Obama Will Not Make a Difference

What (LGF bannished) Yid With Lid said.

There already is a “Palestinian” state: Jordan.

Shy Guy on June 4, 2009 at 9:39 AM

I like much of what he said. Of course, his talk about a nuclear-free world is ridiculous. How about a MISSILE free world? If you don’t want to pressure Iran to stop nuclear development, at least work on missile development. Israel will probably help the world towards Obama’s nuclear-free goal later this year, anywa.

I wonder how this speech plays in an Arabic culture. Take this, for example:

It is agonizing for America to lose our young men and women.

Wouldn’t their culture consider it noble and brave for those men to sacrifice their lives? And wouldn’t they also consider female soldiers to be a sign of barbarism or extreme decadence?

I’m not even sure all Muslims would consider folks in the Twin Towers to be innocent. They might consider most of those people to be infidels, workers in industries that push Western decadence into countries all over the world.

Does Obama really have a better understanding of Islam and Arabic culture than previous administrations?

hawksruleva on June 4, 2009 at 9:40 AM

Once again, Morrissey is a typical, Lefty Obama apologist.

Pfffffft.

Jazz Shaw on June 4, 2009 at 9:40 AM

This is a pleasant surprise. The media has drooled over his glistnening pecks. I wonder if and how they’ll comment about his backbone showing.

shick on June 4, 2009 at 9:40 AM

But Ed, Obama also emphasized how the Israelis are humiliating the Palestinians. I’m sorry, but that is a bunch of hogwash. Also, Obama is great with words, but horrible with deeds. He has shown that he has no interest in making our world a safer place, only a more dangerous one.

Lance Murdock on June 4, 2009 at 9:40 AM

I am still not sure how all this NEW World Order pandering is going to effect our country in the years to come. How are we going to make up to the world for being so utterly evil by being an infidel? The obvious naivete’ is becoming nauseating. I’m sure the Muslim leaders with respond in unison to his appeal to be nice to each other.

volsense on June 4, 2009 at 9:41 AM

Looks pretty lame to me from a quick glance at the BBC report.

He said “violent extremists” had bred fear and that this “cycle of suspicion and discord must end”.

Presumably he means there are violent extremists on our side too, eg Bush.

Mr Obama said Islam had “always been a part of America’s story”.

Yeah, especially the 9/11 story. And then there were the Barbary pirates…

“Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel’s right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine’s,” Mr Obama said.

Since when has any Israeli government, or the majority of its people, denied the right of Palestinians to have a state, so long as it’s not a base for attacking Israel?

Straw men everywhere, as usual.

I say get Cheney to make a speech in Jerusalem.

They’re taking the speech to pieces at The Corner and The Weekly Standard. Hewitt is on it as well.

Read it a little more closely Ed.

EnglishMike on June 4, 2009 at 9:41 AM

However, I don’t hear anything in this speech that Bush didn’t say himself.

Perhaps that’s because George and Barack are both beholden to the King of Arabia.

Shy Guy on June 4, 2009 at 9:41 AM

http://shirt.woot.com/

It’s timely and it’s cool.

Asher on June 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

So, he tells them that there are 8 million Muslims in America after telling them that there are fewer than 6 million Jews in Israel…

Where did that number come from, anyway? The number I see from the State Department puts us at 2.3 million.

Oh – he got that number from Newsweek. Pew, the same year, put the number at 2.4 million.

hawksruleva on June 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

The one problem with congratulating a liberal for good behavior is that it can go to their heads and reinforce the idea that they can do nothing wrong and then continue to do everything else wrong.

shick on June 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

Jazz Shaw on June 4, 2009 at 9:40 AM

Need to add more salt when you are stirring the pot.

WashJeff on June 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

Ed, it’s called the soft bigotry of low expectations. I’m much closer to Yid with Lid on this one.

Attila (Pillage Idiot) on June 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

to recognize Israel’s legitimacy

Well I’ll be…

ladyingray on June 4, 2009 at 9:44 AM

A simple question (that many other ask in different forms): If the Palestinians choose to love their kids, family, friends and communities and focus on making a better life for their future that they would not be able to live in peace next to Israel? Anyone? Anyone?

WashJeff on June 4, 2009 at 9:46 AM

This speech was a total piece of sh!t. It was stupid and dangerous.

As to your idea that Israel got anything more than a boot on the head, the part that says it all is as follows:

At the same time, Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel’s right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine’s.

Here, the Traitor-in-Chief and chief muslim apologist puts the Palestinian savages on the same level as the state of Israel. Insane. The arabs in the territories have no right to anything. Seeing that they were on the losing side of umpteen wars against Israel, they are lucky that they are still alive. They have made nothing but menaces of themselves for decades and have to live with the problem of their own creation.

The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements.

This is the hammer coming down on Israel, which is to be blamed for everything.

This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace.

What previous agreements? Name one agreements that the savage arabs in the territories have ever upheld. Just one. Can’t do it. But Israel is in violation and is undermining peace?

This is a direct threat to Israel. DIRECT.

It is time for these settlements to stop.

The Chicago thug has picked the only nation on Earth that he takes a hard line with. The only nation that is the recipient of threats from this despicable moron in the White House is the nation of Israel.

The rest of this speech is equally stupid and dangerous, but given this intensely nasty attempt of the Traitor-in-Chief to blame everything on Israel and set Israel up for coming embargoes and blockades (that this POS Precedent is planning) should give people fair warning of what absolute sh!t this world is headed into.

Anyone who doubted that The Precedent is looking forward to the destruction of Israel should have no questions left after this pathetic and dangerous speech.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:46 AM

However, I don’t hear anything in this speech that Bush didn’t say himself.I sure don’t remember Bush ever claiming that it was his personal responsibility to right negative stereotypes about Islam wherever they may appear.

outOfElement on June 4, 2009 at 9:46 AM

Did he make any apologies for nasty old America?

Del Dolemonte on June 4, 2009 at 9:33 AM

Big time.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:47 AM

Thanks for manning up and giving credit where credit’s due Ed. It wasn’t a bad speech, and there are some of us who ::gasp!!:: don’t want to vilify and spit vitriol at the muslim world every chance we get.

ernesto on June 4, 2009 at 9:47 AM

Yep, Yid With Lid has a much better take on the Israel portion of the speech.

His take is closer to what the Muslim world is going to “hear” from this Obama speech.

myrenovations on June 4, 2009 at 9:48 AM

Ed, you are not reading the speech well. He is also subtly pinning blame on the Israelis for denying “Palestine’s right to exist.”
He suddenly loves his middle name and Muslim roots, which he hid throughout the campaign.
Also, that we invade countries. Dude, he went there.
Obama: Blame America First.

jencab on June 4, 2009 at 9:49 AM

However, I don’t hear anything in this speech that Bush didn’t say himself.

No offense, Ed, but this was all you needed to say.

Obama is carrying on Bush’s pleasingly tough, but not yet backed up by action, words. He can still act to unleash our energy resources and minimize or eliminate our dependence on foreign oil. He can act to ensure that not a penny more of government money is handed to groups like Hamas. He can also act by extending a warm handshake to Bibi and offering support to neutralize Iran’s nuclear weapon capabilities.

Unless he acts, all he’s doing is towing the line which, while better than we expected, isn’t doing anything but delaying disaster.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:50 AM

Hussein wants parity for the US and, what, Chad?

Man.

Akzed on June 4, 2009 at 9:36 AM

Don’t forget Togo!

Del Dolemonte on June 4, 2009 at 9:51 AM

He is in Cairo, after all, and to quote an old aphorism, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar

But you can catch the most flies with a steaming pile of bullcrap.

thomasaur on June 4, 2009 at 9:51 AM

First, as regards the speech, I thought it was pretty good – credit where it’s due. I don’t think it will do any good as far as assuaging the muslim angst, but admirable effort all told. However, I almost could not read it after perusing the breathless account of the LA Time reporter. Get a room, honey. Finally, and this is a minor and nitpicky point, but how many “Make no mistakes” and “Let me be clears” can this guy utter in one speech. Another day, another “MAJOR” speech from The One.

Huckabye-Romney on June 4, 2009 at 9:51 AM

almost 8 million Muslims – actually just heard that part on FoxNews and he said almost 7 million, but what’s a million anything to a politician?

But the part I didn’t like was how he apologized for Democracy in Iraq. Did you not hear that? And in fact he said that there isn’t any one “right” form of government and we shouldn’t say one is better than any other. Ok, communism is fantastic, in other words, except well, for the human rights violations because of the required fascism, everywhere it’s tried.

kirkill on June 4, 2009 at 9:51 AM

What a winning attitude, appeasing those who want to kill us!! More-so since, the terrorist are always saying, “Please, we want to work w/America, we just want to talk” before they cut off the head of the innocent, or shoot a soldier!

Surprisingly good? quotes from the koran, appeasing the muslims, hmm, well each to his own, just not something I want in a leader of AMERICA. Odd how not one msm is picking up on the husseins trail, covering up his true religion, and not just for the campaign trail, but years ago, gee, one might think his government placement was, uh, I don’t know,..PLANNED?

christene on June 4, 2009 at 9:51 AM

Listened to the speech live on KTLK 100.3 FM. Here is what I gathered,. Soetoro thinks no one country is better than another( BS,, democracy trumps tyranny every time) Israel must not settle in occupied areas. ( BS.. Israel has the right to keep Hamas and Hezbollah as far away as possible). Soetoro made no effort to refer to terrorism. I don’t give a rat’s patoot if he was in Cairo. I will not honor a country’s culture when immigrants legal and especially illegal will not honor my country’s culture. The speech was short on reflecting on the sacrifices made by the United States monetarily and physically and long on kissing the asses of the collective Islamic world. He said he would do everything in his power to stop Islamic stereotyping in our country. He’s a coward and an opportunist…. but not a United States President by any stretch of definition other than elected.

MNDavenotPC on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

Bill Sammon was just on Fox talking about how terrorism wasn’t mentioned in the speech. We just had a terrorist attack on US soil a couple of days ago that killed and injured US citizens.

The “Obama Doctrine” seems to be “If terrorists and terrorism go unacknowledged, there are no terrorists and terrorism”.

Buddahpundit on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

Much has been made of the fact that an African-American with the name Barack Hussein Obama could be elected President.

Much has been made to deny that the name ‘hussein’ ever existed … even at this site.

This is craziness and indicative of The Precedent’s dishonesty. How silly does HotAir feel for screaming about being smeared by the ‘hussein’ mention, now?

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

Oh and the bigger point about saying that Democracy isn’t the answer, he’s basically abandoning any HOPE for the people that live in tyranny in the Middle East.

kirkill on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

This analysis is what happens when you start with really low expectations and a burning desire to appear “fair.”

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

American is pursuing a partnership with Islam.

How does that work, exactly? We send them GM cars, and they send us virgins?

Daggett on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

+1, Ed is great, but he is a journalist.

kirkill on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

Nice Valentino mustache.

redrock on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

This is craziness and indicative of The Precedent’s dishonesty. How silly does HotAir feel for screaming about being smeared by the ‘hussein’ mention, now?

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

Not at all. They enjoy dancing to the Left’s tune. It makes them appear so reasonable.

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:55 AM

Thanks for manning up and giving credit where credit’s due Ed. It wasn’t a bad speech, and there are some of us who ::gasp!!:: don’t want to vilify and spit vitriol at the muslim world every chance we get.

ernesto on June 4, 2009 at 9:47 AM

COngrats to Obama for consistently LYING about the number of american muslims.

“nearly 8 million”

huh! everyone reputable says between 1.5-2.5 million, 1.5 practicing, 2.5 “at one time I was a Muslim and i’ll say it for a poll”

Obama’s new math:

America has been around for 7,000 years

I am the 3rd President of the US

There are 12 states in America

My aunt’s gyno liberated an Iranian death Camp during WOrld War I.

The US Civil war was fought in 1979.

***THERE ARE NOT 8 MILLION MUSILMS, OR 7 MILLION MUSLIMS, OR 6 OR 5 OR 4 OR 3 LIVING HERE. Your president just repeated a talking point by CAIR, directly sticking his finger in the eye of American Jews by saying “ah muslims are bigger”

From all his speeches, and his campaign things, and his MINISTER….

….is there any doubt left that Obama is anti-Semitic???

battleoflepanto1571 on June 4, 2009 at 9:55 AM

I am going to read the speech before I render an opinion. My only thought at this point was that the speech was fraught with potential… and most of it negative as in a “no-win” situation. I’ll probably view the text through that lens.

I am not entirely certain why he felt compelled to do the speech in the first place. Arrogance? Naivte? Best intentions? It was a hell of a tightrope to begin with.

D2Boston on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

That’s right. Keep focusing on what’s really important.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

So let there be no doubt: Islam is a part of America.

– The Precedent

What good did islam ever do for America? Someone needs to name one contribution islam has made to this nation.

Islam was forced on this nation, but it has never been part of it.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

I am not entirely certain why he felt compelled to do the speech in the first place. Arrogance? Naivte? Best intentions? It was a hell of a tightrope to begin with.

D2Boston on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

Send a signal of unity with his roots?

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:57 AM

Just words, as Ogabe himself once said. Back it up with action, Ogabe or that’s all this speech will ever be, just words.

Sell the Apache helo’s to Israel, take Iranian nuclear ambitions seriously and quit bowing to the oil thugs.

Bishop on June 4, 2009 at 9:57 AM

That’s right. Keep focusing on what’s really important.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

Put your head back in the sand.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:57 AM

To expand on a thought I made in the other thread…

Ignoring for a moment:

1. The problem of how a nation can a partnership with a religion

2. The inconsistency between this idea and the “separation of church and state”

3. The question of what benefit we get from such a “partnership” (free virgins?)

Can you must imagine what would happen if the Fresh Prince of Bill Ayers had announced a partnership with Christianity? Or (gasp) Judaism?

Daggett on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

For all I recommend Robert Spencer’s analyses.

jerrytbg on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

Put your head back in the sand.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:57 AM

You mean, “get off your knees and wipe off your chin.”

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

The “Obama Doctrine” seems to be “If terrorists and terrorism go unacknowledged, there are no terrorists and terrorism”.

Buddahpundit on June 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

“The Obama Doctrine:

When a tragedy strikes:

Step 1. If a Christian does it, it’s wide-scale terrorism

Step 2. If a Muslim does it, it didnt happen at all

Step 3. Blame “failed policies of the previous administration”

Step 4. If it was your policy, blame Israel”

battleoflepanto1571 on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

Don’t forget. He referred to it as the “Holy Koran”. He also stated to no nation has the right to tell another nation whether they can be nuclear or not. This man does not believe in American Exceptionalism. His words and actions prove it.

kingsjester on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

Hmmmm,

I think Israel is kicking itself for not taking on Iran between Nov 5, 2008 and Jan 19, 2009.

Bush should have locked that down instead of throwing money away on TARP, GM & Chrysler.

izoneguy on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

I am not entirely certain why he felt compelled to do the speech in the first place. Arrogance? Naivte? Best intentions? It was a hell of a tightrope to begin with.

D2Boston on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

Because he cannot shut down Gitmo. Because he is keeping the right to re-visit EITs. Because he is keeping warrantless wiretaps. Because he is keeping up the drones. Because he cannot just up and leave Iraq. Because he had to send more troops to Afghanistan…

myrenovations on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

Nice Valentino mustache.

redrock on June 4, 2009 at 9:54 AM

Lame attempt at street cred with the audience? No time to grow a full beard?

Wethal on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:57 AM

I totally agree. Anyone who bothers with frivolous things that don’t involve the president’s middle name when discussing a major speech really needs to wake up. I mean, dude, his middle name kills puppies.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

That is why the U.S. government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab, and to punish those who would deny it.

I wnder what Turkey thinks about this …

Of course, what would Turkey know about islam and how it always pursues the power of state?

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 10:00 AM

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

Classy.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 10:00 AM

kingsjester on June 4, 2009 at 9:58 AM

But hey, it was “surprisingly good.” Barf!

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 10:00 AM

So…yeah. Great. Someone wrote some neat lines for him to read on clear screens.

Can you please get Hannity’s interview of Rush last night? I only have basic cable.

Thanks! :o)

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM

So what of the other religions which exist in the region, the ones that aren’t muslim, do they get a voice too? “Partnering with Islam” completely ignores them and the knifes-edge existence they lead.

Bishop on June 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 10:00 AM

Hey chief sycophant, you really want to go back down this road again?

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM

And finally, just as America can never tolerate violence by extremists, we must never alter our principles. 9/11 was an enormous trauma to our country. The fear and anger that it provoked was understandable, but in some cases, it led us to act contrary to our ideals. We are taking concrete actions to change course.

The Precedent can’t open his mouth without bad-mouthing the US. He disgusts me to no end.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Islam was forced on this nation, but it has never been part of it.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM

I wonder how long it will take for traditional American patriots to begin to push back on the catastrophy that is the Obama administration?

How far will this guy go to destroy all the positive and productive aspects of the United States?

When the wheels come off, what’s next?

saiga on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

I mean, dude, his middle name kills puppies.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

(giggle)

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Hey chief sycophant, you really want to go back down this road again?

TheBigOldDog on June 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM

You started with an insult. What road are you talking about?

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Ed, you are not reading the speech well. He is also subtly pinning blame on the Israelis for denying “Palestine’s right to exist.”
He suddenly loves his middle name and Muslim roots, which he hid throughout the campaign.
Also, that we invade countries. Dude, he went there.
Obama: Blame America First.

jencab on June 4, 2009 at 9:49 AM

Ed got caught up in the cadence of the words, not what was actually being said…maybe? I am not sure why Ed thinks this speech is “surprisingly good”.

SouthernGent on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Surprisingly good? Surely you jest, Ed.

Buy Danish on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Can you please get Hannity’s interview of Rush last night? I only have basic cable.

Thanks! :o)

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM

I DVRed it. It didn’t live up to the hype. I fast-forwarded through much of it.

Daggett on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

To be honest, Obama had a HUGE opportunity.

The first Muslim president could have said “ok so-called ‘Palestinians’. put up or shut up. you’ve acted like criminals. you’ve had your own state in gaza since 2005, and today gaza is a hellhole where the sewage runs in the street. other arabs pretend to cry for you, but they don’t house you or make you citizens or give you money — they put you in refugee camps, and in lebanon they attack those refugee camps. You’ve tried this “violence” thing, and it hasn’t worked over the last 60 years. Do you think it will work in another 60 years? will your ‘goals’ be accomplished by 2070 or 2130? so it’s time to put down your guns and live like civilized people. and you know what? israel won’t lift a finger to you. this is 90% your fault, and if you act all pissy about it, the death will just continue. your move, sherlock”

…but he DIDNT. he didnt say a danged thing. had to take cheap shots at israel.

THIS WAS NOT A BRAVE SPEECH. this was FECKLESSS.

battleoflepanto1571 on June 4, 2009 at 10:03 AM

So when should my wife go for her hijab fitting appointment?

angryed on June 4, 2009 at 10:03 AM

However, I don’t hear anything in this speech that Bush didn’t say himself.

Comparing EVERYTHING Obama does and says to Bush is getting old, Ed. Bush gave plenty of pandering speeches to the Muslim world, and I hated it then. Bush is not the gold standard.

fourstringfuror on June 4, 2009 at 10:04 AM

BTW,…Does this mean the media will stop referring to Hussein as African-American, I think it’s pretty crystal,…Arab-American.
ooops, another Hussein lie,…SHOCK & Awwww.

christene on June 4, 2009 at 10:04 AM

I note on Twitter that plenty of people are upset with Obama’s quoting of the Koran and his positive spin on Islam, ie, “religion of peace,” “Golden Rule,” etc. He is in Cairo, after all, and to quote an old aphorism, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Appealing to people’s better natures is a rhetorical device with a long history — and a long history of mixed results.

The problem is that the justification for Islamist attacks lies in their founding documents.

Basilsbest on June 4, 2009 at 10:04 AM

I DVRed it. It didn’t live up to the hype. I fast-forwarded through much of it.

Daggett on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Anyone else think Hannity is lame?

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:05 AM

Not bad
Not great

Boilerplate

Expected it. He’s not going to go to Egypt and denounce Islam

blatantblue on June 4, 2009 at 10:05 AM

“…you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.”

Everytime I ever hear or see this phrase, it sounds good, but the person using it is usually trying to screw me over on something or make me do something to accomodate someone else while taking it up the *()$%^$…

catmman on June 4, 2009 at 10:05 AM

Ed got caught up in the cadence of the words, not what was actually being said…maybe? I am not sure why Ed thinks this speech is “surprisingly good”.

SouthernGent on June 4, 2009 at 10:02 AM

Because Ed thinks Obama has “personal charm” (he has written so) and because he has a certain vulnerability to having his ears tickled (my opinion).

BigD on June 4, 2009 at 10:06 AM

We have 3 1/2 more years of this guy. I wonder what the USA will be like when he is done?

saiga on June 4, 2009 at 10:07 AM

This speech was a total piece of sh!t. It was stupid and dangerous.
progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 9:46 AM

+1,000.
The speech was an outrage.
Hussein Fauxbama was basically saying that 3,000 Americans died on 9/11 and over 4,000 soldiers died in the WOT because the U.S. had a “misunderstanding” with Islam before The Won came to power.
This man needs to be impeached.
No POTUS should ever give a speech like this-where he gives more credit and comfort to our enemies than our own country–overseas.

Jenfidel on June 4, 2009 at 10:07 AM

Surprisingly good for a Muslim buttkisser.

Am Yisrael chai!

TexasJew on June 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM

Obama also insisted on the right of a woman to wear a hijab (Muslim veil) in America. What about the right of a woman NOT to wear a hijab or burka, or to get an education, in Muslim countries? Why do women get stoned for being raped in Muslim countries, while men get away with it?

Steve Z on June 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM

Too bad Ogabe isn’t going to visit Israel to offer his official support. You would think he could manage a quick day-trip over to Tel Aviv while in the area, drop in just to say hi or something.

Bishop on June 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM

The unicorns are happy. Peace is at hand.

drjohn on June 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM

I totally agree. Anyone who bothers with frivolous things that don’t involve the president’s middle name when discussing a major speech really needs to wake up. I mean, dude, his middle name kills puppies.

MadisonConservative on June 4, 2009 at 9:59 AM

That quote was from his speech moron. He was the one who brought it up. When did he ever bring that up in a speech in America? When was ANYONE ever allowed to bring that up in America?

BigOldDog was right about what you were busy doing. Get back to it.

progressoverpeace on June 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM

this was FECKLESSS.

battleoflepanto1571 on June 4, 2009 at 10:03 AM

Pretty much sums up the entire administration. Great word choice.

Can I get someone to tell me if GW traveled as much, gave as many speeches (all billed as the “most important” OR “best”, etc.) ? The impression I had of W was that he GOVERNED. Not like I want O to “govern” anymore, if what he has been doing is any indication. It’s just, my gosh. He is always campaigning and it is super old.

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:10 AM

You don´t expect the President to go to Cairo to tell the Muslims off, do you? Wouldn´t be prudent. Of course it was a diplomatic, bridge-building kind of speech. Of course Obama glossed over a few uncomfortable facts. Goes with the territory.

But he also said some true things that people in that region don´t hear to often. I have no problem to give him credit for that.

Overall I get a mixed impression from this speech – there´s parts I like a lot less – and I don´t think it will do much good anyway. The big question with Obama is always whether his words still mean anything tomorrow. I´d say no, but we will see.

el gordo on June 4, 2009 at 10:10 AM

We have 3 1/2 more years of this guy. I wonder what the USA will be like when he is done?

saiga on June 4, 2009 at 10:07 AM

Led by a turkey, the USA will be like Turkey.

Steve Z on June 4, 2009 at 10:10 AM

Jenfidel on June 4, 2009 at 10:07 AM

True. Totally true.

Mommypundit on June 4, 2009 at 10:11 AM

Everything to everyone.

Count to 10 on June 4, 2009 at 10:14 AM

With that thin moustache, maybe he’s channeling a 1980′s “Kid Creole and the Coconuts” look.
But with additional treasonous Islamophilic goodness!

TexasJew on June 4, 2009 at 10:14 AM

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