Obama's Historic TV Interview On Arab TV( video)
by BigDog, Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 07:27:40 AM EST
[Cross Posted from Polcampaign at stuartoneill.com]
[Personal comment: There was a diary of this event at DK and a good portion of the response was semi-negative since he choose a network other than AljazerraEnglish. I do not, as an experienced politico,understand why anyone with a brain doesn't understand this is a positive historic event that needs recognition and support.
The most important part of the event is that fact that for the first time the Arab, Muslim and Persian worlds can hear an American President articulate his vision on one of THEIR networks. It is a significant step forward to those groups. I frankly do not understand why so many in the 'progressive left' (a term I think is being misapplied these days) have such politically tin ears. An American President on Arab TV gives that President a forum to reach everyone! It is,in fact, historic and huge diplomatic step forward.]
On 1.27.09 President Obama took the historic step of being interviewed by the Al Arabiya Television network. It is the first time any high ranking official has ever granted an interview to Arab or Muslim TV networks. Seen widely in the Arab and Muslim world it is an affirmation of Obama's campaign promise to reach out to that world.
At points in the formal interview Obama says
"Now, my job is to communicate the fact that the United States has a stake in the well-being of the Muslim world, that the language we use has to be a language of respect.
I have Muslim members of my family. I have lived in Muslim countries." He went on to criticize phrases like "war on terror.""The language we use matters," he said. "We cannot paint with a broad brush a faith as a consequence of the violence that is done in that faith's name."
Al Arabiya Network has posted a two part interview on YouTube. PolCampaign and The Political Dogfight bring you both segments. This is a full length comprehensive interview. This interview breaks new ground and sets a new stand for American diplomacy. Is it a breakthough moment? Judge for yourself.
The 2 part You Tube video and full transcript is at PolCampaign.