The Arab World Reacts to Obama’s Speech

By Sadie Bass

Jun 4, 2009 2:49pm

Reactions to Obama's speech are pouring in from around the globe.  Opinions are mixed, but one thing is clear — the world was listening.  Below are a few reactions from people living in predominantly Islamic countries. “I give him a B. His speech was amazing, but he did not come with details that we the Arab people expected he would have.  At the beginning I was touched with the new tone, but I was disappointed at the end. I think it has been received positively by all, but will it make a change?” — Amin El Haj, a student at The American University in Dubai    “Obama managed to say everything without promising anything.  To be honest I did not see anything new in this.” — Nakhle Al Hage, News Director of Al Arabiya in Dubai “I don’t believe (the) speech is a big effort.  No, (the) big effort is working.  Do something on the ground, that’s the big effort.  The speech, anyone can make a speech, not only Presidents.  It’s just wishes, descriptions, beliefs, good feelings. I think we need more than speeches.”  Ribhi Asfour, a store owner in Ramallah “This is a new step for peace in the Muslim world.”  Anthony Sulistyo in Jakarta, Indonesia “Enemy is enemy.  He's the enemy of Muslims.  What good will he do? We don't expect anything.”  — Muhammad Shaban in Islamabad, Pakistan “In this world America is a king without a crown, and if they have sincere efforts they could certainly solve many of the problems.  I definitely see him better than the previous regime, but so far nothing very optimistic has come out.”  — Abdul Rauf in Islamabad, Pakistan

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