Nov 16 2010
YAWN. Muslims in America were less than impressed with Obama’s latest tributes to the ‘world’s greatest’ religion while he was in India and Indonesia.
Politico Barack Hussein Obama’s speech in Indonesia did little to inspire Muslims back home. Their overwhelming response to his remarks on Wednesday: It was a nice gesture, but we weren’t impressed. Using a tone reminiscent of the mutual respect and understanding he used in his Cairo speech to Muslims, Obama laid out his vision of a genial relationship he hopes for the United States to have with Muslim countries.
Directors of four groups representing Muslims — the Terrorist Front Group CAIR Council on American-Islamic Relations, Muslim-Brotherhood affiliated the Islamic Society of North America, the Muslim Public Affairs Council and the Muslim American Society — all expressed to POLITICO that they were disappointed with the progress the Obama
administration has made to address the concerns of Muslim-American communities.
“We just wish the rhetoric would turn into policy that could have a positive impact,” said Hooper, who said Obama’s speech in Indonesia was one he had “seen before in Istanbul and Cairo.” (Yes, it’s about time the Flag of Islam was flying over the White House, damn it)
Muslim Americans “want the administration to push for more progress,” (in turning America into an Islamic caliphate) and they are seeing a gap between what Obama has accomplished so far and the promises he made during the campaign, said Alejandro Beutel, a government liaison at the Muslim Public Affairs Council.
Obama’s Muslim critics cited the presence of troops in Afghanistan, the failure to shut down Guantanamo Bay, a sub-par effort to protect Muslim-Americans’ civil rights, and the country’s ambivalent role in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as areas Obama hasn’t met his objectives.
“There have been no serious dialogues on these concerns by members of the administration,” Bray said. “The rhetoric doesn’t meet the domestic or global realities.”
He added that Obama has also fallen short in taking appropriate actions at home. “He attended a mosque in Cairo, one in Istanbul, one in Asia. He’s attended churches and synagogues — but he’s yet to go to a mosque less than 30 blocks from the White House,” Bray said, referring to the Islamic Center in Washington. (Why bother when there’s a Mosque in the pentagon?)
Sarah Thompson, communications director of the Islamic Society of North America, empathized with the White House and said the Muslim community is not unaware of resistance the administration faces. “Extremists, far-right political figures and people in the media … have a campaign against Obama the Muslim sympathizer, ” Thompson said. “There are some extremely well-funded, extremely far-right campaigns mobilizing against Muslims, and what people hear the most is what they’re going to believe.” (No, they are just ordinary Americans coming to grips with the repugnant fact that there is a Muslim in the White House, who may or may not be there legally)
The challenge for Obama and his administration, she suggested, will be to clarify the distinction between terrorists others of Muslim background. (There’s the rub, it hard to distinguish between the two when they both have the same goals, just different tactics for achieving them)
While the groups’ spokespeople agreed that traveling around the world holds benefits for the United States, some of them questioned whether the timing of the trip was a sound strategic move.
“It seems as if our president has adopted a ‘philosopher king’ kind of approach,” Bray said. “People are looking for a more hands-on, direct approach from their president, but Obama isn’t giving the impression to the American people — be it Muslims or non-Muslims — that he is really engaged.” (Actually, we are looking for a more hands-off, stay they hell out of my life approach)