We might suspect that the man means well! We might that is until we think about what he has actually done since attaining office; Guantanamo closed, but not closed, torture condemned but the torturers given immunity from prosecution, American troops withdrawn from Iraq, but not really withdrawn and for those who have been withdrawn the flight home just might be in a wooden box via the Hindukush. Still, he might mean well, so, while I cannot share the western media’s enthusiasm for the speech he gave in Cairo yesterday, I will adopt a “let’s wait and see” attitude. Oh, what exactly did he say?
He said his “salaam aleikums” and that and his quotes from the ‘quran’, his praise for Islamic culture and a few other bits of rather vague praise earned applause from the audience at Cario University, oh the audience; photo in the ‘Süddeutsche Zeitung’, six female students, two headscarves, lots of well groomed young men in nice suits. Yes, the type who will be waiting for the climate between the US and the Arab world to thaw so they can get themselves off to an Ivy League school as soon as possible. However, he was generous and he told us that Iran can be a partner for peace if it gives up on its nuclear programme and he told us that ‘Hammas’ has a role to play in the peace process if it recognises Israel’s right to exist and, of course, he told us that Israel has to stop building settlements.
A reasonable, rational, caring chap this “hype” fellow and I am almost tempted to “re-baptise” him back to the “hope” man. However, this guy really is just as hopeless as his predessor and not only is there no mention of Israel actually dismanteling the settlements they are already in but Israel will also continue to expand the settlements under a new guise such as extending the boundries of East Jerusalem where the some 200,000 settlers there are not actually viewed by the Israelis, or the Americans for that matter, as part of the equation.
Yes, Guantanamo closed but not closed, American soldiers leaving Iraq but not leaving, Iran a fair and equal partner if it helps do “Uncle Sam’s” dirty work, while at the same time abandoning its nuclear programme and recognising Israel, and finally, a role for ‘Hamas’ if it gives up its resistence to the Zionist occupation . In the meantime, there was a tentative word directed at those “moderate” friends, Pakistan, Egypt, Saudi etc, suggesting that they might want to pursue democratic reforms. Still, we wouldn’t really want that, would we? After all, weren’t the ‘Hamas’ elected in free elections and is there not a chance that the ‘Hizbollah’ is going to be elected in the Lebanon and is it not very possible that Ahmadenejad is going to be re-elected in Iran? No, by the end of Obama’s term in office, the settlements will still be there and they will have, at least, got a bit bigger, the corrupt little sychophants will still be in place in the Middle East and our “hype” fellow will still be spouting drivel. “Newspeak”; George Orwell never even began to fathom the extent of it and do I really have to give Obama the benefit of the doubt?
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