Obama’s speech to the Muslim’s World

I was moved by the speech which I watched on direct transmission from the BBC yesterday. The 55 minutes address from Al-Azhar, the Islamic learning institution was eloquently delivered but more importantly it showed the sincerity of the person of Obama. He gave in straight manner his reading of the situation of the Muslim World and proposed peaceful paths to living in harmony with the whole of humanity. He definitely clarifies the position of the United States on the hot issues: Israel and the Palestine, nuclear arms, Women liberty, occupation of Iraq, war in Afghanistan.

As a toastmaster, I am reviewing his speech, available on several sites on the web, and take lessons in speech craft. Reading his transcript, I found , is  a better way of studying Obama’s  rhetoric art. From the numerous appropriate citation, namely of the Koran, Obama and his team must have worked diligently there on.

As a world citizen, I can only rejoice am be delighted to hear a peace maker. He has put in persepective the present world view of Islam and the crude stereo types proponed  by a great number of persons in the west which is not conducive to greater peace and harmony.

I only wish and pray his words are transformed in deeds and that his words are taken by his administration.

Since I last visit to Egypt, 12 years ago, I had since a soft spot for this country which could be considered as a moderate Arab state with a rich history. Choosing Egypt to address the Muslim world is very appropriate for the President of the US. Do you know that Egypt Arab is the standard Arab just as BBC English would be the world Standard English?

Should I find interesting lessons from my studies from the angle of speech writing I shall share them to you in due course. Mean while I advise you to listen to this speech which gave me so much pleasure.

1 comment so far ↓

#1 joseph on 06.05.09 at 9:09 pm

Arab news comments today
Speech draws mixed reaction
Galal Fakkar & Sultan Al-Tamimi | Arab News

JEDDAH: Local reactions to US President Barack Obama’s speech in Cairo yesterday were mostly positive, with a few expressing reservations over whether the president’s eloquent words would result in actions — especially pertaining to Palestinian sovereignty and the statehood.

“In all of Obama’s seven-part speech, the part about the Palestinian issues was his weakest point,” said Yasser Darwish, a Palestinian supervisor at food processing company in Jeddah. “He did not necessarily say anything new other than mentioning that the current Israeli settlement activity has to stop.”

Darwish added that Obama’s statements in support of Israel seem to him to have the same tone as previous presidents who made statements in support of Palestinian statehood while their administrations actively supported Israel’s strategies for preventing this autonomy.

Najeeb Adel, an Egyptian pharmacist in Jeddah, was more optimistic, calling Obama’s statements “honest.” “Especially the parts when he talked about spreading the culture of forgiveness, and the part about minority rights, especially the rights of Christian minorities in Lebanon and in Egypt.”

Adel said he doesn’t recall a US president ever publicly addressing the Coptic minority in Egypt or the Maronites of Lebanon.

Jeddah-based Jordanian architect Mustafa Abu Himdah called Obama “sincere and honest.”

“He wants to reach out to Muslims and start a new page based on tolerance and cooperation and living together. It was in a way surprisingly a new attitude,” he added.

Aish Hazazi, a Yemeni teacher, said it was novel to hear a speech like this from a US president. “He talked about hijab and women’s rights and talked how it is ingrained in our Islamic tradition,” said Hazazi.

“He talked about giving women the freedom to choose the way they dress or whether they want to live in traditional ways. These are all good points that I have never heard from any other US president.”

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