Friendship among nations has always been a fleeting affair. As history so aptly has proven, when friendships and communication flourish trade increases, treaties for peace are maintained, and the future always looks brighter for the citizens of all respectful parties. Of course the key to peace is communication. Even when it took months for nations to communicate, there was always the hope that a deal or compromise could be worked out and that peace would prevail whenever war was imminent. As of late, given our ability to communicate with such ease you would think that the world would be a much safer place to live in.
You would be wrong. Rogue nations and established ones alike that feel no need to communicate with their neighbors or countries that maintain no speaking polices with others because of actions of certain groups of people in those countries, have placed us in a constant state of fear. Do they have nukes or don’t they? We don’t talk to them because they are terrorist! Least we forget that when one lives in a constant state of fear, it isn’t long before one begins to find themselves in a state of paranoia. Everyone suddenly becomes the enemy.
We have spent far too long on a path in the Middle East that seeks not to open doors but to keep them sealed and locked, out of fear and paranoia created by small groups of people, who even though they live in caves, have the ability to communicate very well it seems. The President’s speech to the world of Islam was the first step in a long overdo process that if successful will finally begin to bring us all a bit closer together; not as targets but as mutually respectful friends. Of course depending on who heard it, reviews have been mixed. The speech appears to be a meal served to the world that had a little bit of something in it for everyone but without a doubt it said, “lets talk!”
Following on the steps of a presidency that was touted in book after book for misspeak and poor speech, President Obama spoke with both eloquence and clarity regarding not only the differences between Islam and America but also more importantly the similarities between us. Calling on them not to stereotype us and telling Americans that we can no longer lump all Muslims in the same basket as well, he made no apologizes for fighting the bad guys and several attempts to rekindle an image of America long forgotten in the Middle East; one of being a negotiator in crisis, not an attacker.
The President spoke openly of his Muslim background and his personal history of association with the Muslim world. For those that said he denied his background or at least played it low key he appeared to come out of the closet telling the Muslin community that in so many words he understands their pain because his father was a Muslim and he grew up in a Muslim country for a while. While this may one day be great fodder for those who will criticize in future elections, it set the tone for a speech long overdue.
He quoted the Koran and openly added he has a great understanding of not only our history but theirs as well, stating it was Morocco, a Muslim nation, that first recognized America’s sovereignty. Few Americans knew that I am sure. You can link to the speech and it’s contacts here, and begin to change for yourself a frame of mind that has gotten us nowhere, and take that first step down a path that for far too long has grown cold; the path to friendship and better understanding of others!