I appreciate the symbolism of Obama's speech in Cairo. It's a significant gesture and took some guts. I am also tickled that my president has a new nickname in the Arab world: Abu-Hussein. For the rest of it - well, we shall see.
Other people are better qualified to pontificate. Among the most interesting:
The Arabist, an Arab journalist in Cairo, writes paragraph by paragraph response.
As'ad Abu-Khalil has extensive coverage. His long, no-line-break rant here, worth reading. His News Hour appearance here. His link to another commentator here . I don't care to take on Abu-Khalil's negative view of events, but he knows whereof he speaks, and his critique must be considered. He gives no quarter to corruption and abuse of power.
Juan Cole's roundup and comment, invaluable.
Philip Weiss, who was there in the room with our President, having just returned from a visit to Gaza. Weiss has had a transformation in the last five years. Scales of prejudice and tribalism have dropped from his eyes.
Ali Abu-Nimeh provides further criticism.
Richard Silverstein likes the speech and has hope.
Colonel Patrick Lang, Middle East expert and retired US Army Intelligence senior officer, says Baby Steps.
BBC roundup of reactions, including Hamas, Hizbullah, Teheran, Israel and other parties. Alison Chaiken points out that the NY Times (and the BBC) quote negative Hamas statements, whereas Al Jazeera pulls a more positive quote from the same spokesman.
Tony Karon wrote this on Facebook:
The most important part of Obama's speech today, I thought, was his invoking of the Nakbah and the Holocaust. In fact, urging the Muslim world to reckon with the legacy of the Holocaust in understanding Israelis is far more honestly a legacy of South Africa than is Obama's false suggestion, in passing, that the ANC's struggle against apartheid was based on non-violent civil disobedience a la MLK... For the record, Bam, the ANC never renounced violence until the regime agreed to democracy... But here's my 2006 piece on What Arab Holocaust Deniers Should Learn from Apartheid.
Saifedean Ammous posted a note on Facebook which he permits me to reprint, below the jump.