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More Reactions to Obama’s Ankara Speech
More Reactions to Obama’s Ankara Speech
As the dust settles from President Obama’s first address to the Muslim world from the Muslim world, commentators continue to take stock of its meaning and implications. In The Daily Star, Rami Khouri observes that Obama “made some important new statements and changes in style, while repeating some silly old bad habits and simplistic insults…he gets high marks for intent and execution, and medium marks for substance.”
Wednesday, April 8,2009 15:57
pomed.org

As the dust settles from President Obama’s first address to the Muslim world from the Muslim world, commentators continue to take stock of its meaning and implications. In The Daily Star, Rami Khouri observes that Obama “made some important new statements and changes in style, while repeating some silly old bad habits and simplistic insults…he gets high marks for intent and execution, and medium marks for substance.”

Meanwhile, Middle East Strategy at Harvard has compiled comments from over a dozen analysts on the president’s speech. I recommend reading the entire post but here are a few highlights:

Scott Carpenter: “In the speech, the president struck mostly high notes…There were a couple sour notes, however…he once again invoked the tired bromide of the so-called “Muslim World”[and] also continued to avoid the “D” word (democracy).

Michele Dunne: Echoing Carpenter’s sentiment, Dunne points out “[w]hat was peculiar about Obama’s speech…was his strong emphasis on democracy (mentioned at least eight times) as the tie that binds the United States and Turkey in friendship, and yet his unwillingness to apply the same principle in the latter part of the speech to U.S. relations with the Muslim world. There, the “D” word was banned.”

Adam Garfinkle: Arguing that the speech was rather anti-climactic, Garfinkle writes “[t]his was a box-checking speech, full of duck-billed platitudes and not a single deliverable. The only things noteworthy about it were that: a) it happened; b) there was no quid pro quo protocol equilibration to Greece; and c) the speech abjured the old language that Turkey is a “moderate Muslim nation.”

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