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NYT editorial praises `strong’ Obama for his Cairo speech

Cairo, June 5 (ANI): An editorial in the New York Times has praised US President Barack Obama for his speech to the Muslim World from Cairo.

“It takes a strong president to acknowledge the mistakes of the past. And, it takes a strong president to press himself and the world to do better,” the editorial said of Obama.
It further goes on to say that Obama spoke, unwaveringly, of the need to defend the country’s security and values. He left no doubt that he would do what must be done to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban, while making it clear that Americans have no desire to permanently occupy Afghanistan or Iraq.

He spoke, unequivocally, of the United States’ “unbreakable” commitment to Israel and of why Iran must not have a nuclear weapon. He was also clear that all of those listening — in the Muslim world and in Israel — must do more to defeat extremism and to respect the rights of their neighbors and their people.

“Words are important. Mr. Obama was right when he urged leaders who privately speak of moderation and compromise to dare to say those words in public. But words are not enough. Mr. Obama, who, after all, has been in office for less than six months, has a lot to do to fulfill this vision. So do others,” said the editorial.
“We couldn’t agree more when he said that the elements of a peace formula are known. We are now waiting to hear his strategy to move the process forward. The audience was undoubtedly waiting to hear how Mr. Obama handled the issue of democracy — and its depressing scarcity in the Islamic world. He avoided President Bush’s hectoring tone and did not confront his host, President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt. But we suspect everyone in the hall knew who he was talking about (they applauded at key moments) when he said that governments must maintain power “through consent, not coercion” and that “elections alone do not make true democracy.”

“We hope he made those points directly when he met Mr. Mubarak and King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia,” concludes the editorial. (ANI)

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